Attachment & Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is a part of a child’s social-emotional development. At age 6-8 months, children may start to realize that they are separate from their parents and began to start missing them. Children’s anxiety about being separated from parents may peak between 10-18 months, yet for some children this anxiety may continue into their third year.

Parents also may experience anxiety when leaving their child; this too is a part of parenting. Separation anxiety is something parents can prepare for. Check out these tips to assist with preparing for this situation.

  • If your child is in the care of someone else, make sure the caregiver is trustworthy and knowledgeable
  • Prepare your child for the transition to another’s  care – make sure the child has familiar items in his new environment (i.e. favorite blanket, food they like, etc.)
  • Talk your child about what is going to happen. Use words appropriate for their age and speak calmly.
  • Maintain open communication with the child’s caregiver. Ask about their day when you pick up the child.
  • Know that if your child cries when you leave this does not mean your child does not like your caregiver, rather it means they miss you, their parent.