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Fear of separation from preschoolers

Fear of separation from preschoolers


The fear of separation or separation is caused by negative feelings such as the restlessness, loss, loneliness and sadness that are first experienced by the child when separating from important people in his life.

It first appears in the baby stage, but may reappear at preschool age. This phenomenon is most common in infants who are separated from the mother (when she returns to work) or the nanny (if she changes) and is considered a normal step in the child's development.

When the child is emotionally attached to more people (mother, father, grandparents, grandmother or grandchildren), there is a lower incidence of fear of separation. It seems that these children understand that separations are only temporary (even if it lasts longer) and that if a person is missing, one of the others will take care of him.

Separation anxiety in preschoolers

It is considered that the development of the cognitive ability of the child contributes greatly to diminishing the fear of separation. From the age of 2, the child begins to develop cognitive skills that help him keep in mind the image of the person leaving until he returns, which is just one of the methods he uses to cope with the fear of separation.

However, even if your baby has grown up and overtaken separation anxiety at the age of a baby, it is possible to go through this experience once he reaches preschool. It is the age at which one separates from the family environment to go to kindergarten or school, and the feeling of fear can reappear and can manifest itself in various ways.

Anxiety mainly manifests in the first weeks of school for children. Preschool age is one in which children learn to negotiate independently, a concept that is wonderful and attracts them, but at the same time it is scary for them. With the awareness of the idea that he is a person with his own needs and desires, comes the realization that the parents will not always be near him, which produces a strong fear.

How do you deal with separation anxiety in preschoolers?

There are several things you can do to lessen your child's feelings when it comes time to go to kindergarten or school. Go to grades / school several days before you start - help him become acquainted with the location, area and environment by visiting him from time to time, talking about him to know what awaits him.

  • Establish a routine to say "goodbye" - the first step is to say each time "goodbye" and create a routine for it (a joke, a song, hugs, etc.);
  • be blessed when you part with him - don't let the child see how scared you are to leave him for so many hours alone;
  • be relaxed, as long as the little one sees you happy and happy you will know that everything is fine.
  • never ask him "are you afraid or afraid of the first day of grades / school?" - does not induce the idea that they must have these experiences you may not feel them, but if you remember or pay attention to them, you will become aware of them and live through them.

Better tell them about the fun and fun parts of going to school or school. Make sure you trust the kindergarten / school you chose - only then you will be quiet and you will be as confident as the teachers take care of your little one and nothing will be left in the hours when it is far from you.

Always be there on time to take him home - do not delay, especially in the early days, because he will be very scared to see you alone there, which will further accentuate your anxiety and may cause him to stop coming. another time.

There are other tricks to help your child feel closer to him every time you separate:

  • temporary tattoos (from sweets or snacks) - choose 2 at the same time and do both at the same time - explain to them that you will always be close to them and will not have to worry about them;
  • put each day a surprise or leave a message or a nice greeting in the lunch package, with which to increase their enthusiasm and show them that you are close;
  • read them educational stories in this regard (choose specific topics).

Separation anxiety in babies

The fear of separation usually begins around the age of 6 months and culminates around the 10th month. It usually ends on the first anniversary. In some children it can continue for up to 2 years. There is a hypothesis that this condition develops until the disease stage in people up to the age of 18, but there are no clear arguments to support this theory. The intensity and duration of this fear of breaking up with the mother depend on the temperament of the child and the attitude of the mother.

Here are some suggestions on how to proceed:

  • prepare emotionally before you leave home;
  • if the baby is upset, keep your confidence and calm even when you do not feel that way;
  • always remember that the fear of separation is a normal behavioral aspect of your child and also a sign that he has reached a new cognitive and emotional level;
  • let him get used to the fact that you're leaving;

When the fear of separation begins to manifest, it leaves home for longer periods of time. At first you can leave for 20 minutes, then miss more. Try to schedule walks for when you wake up or after eating. Children support separation from their mother more easily when they are not hungry, when they are not tired or sick.

Bona can diminish the impact of mother's departure on the baby by playing games that distract her and telling her that the mother will return quickly. Developing the child's independence from the mother can help eliminate the protest and can be achieved by letting the baby play alone (but when under supervision). It has been found that the baby gains self-confidence and a sense of security if parents respond to his emotional needs with a constantly loving and understanding attitude.

Tags Separation anxiety babies Preschool anxiety Separation anxiety Children emotions Parent-child relationship Child sadness Bona child