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Seperation anxiety aand/or high needs baby?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I know they say seperation anxiety does not start for months, but I also know for a fact that ODS had separation anxiety starting at 2 months. He'd scream even if DH held him and quiet the second he touched me. He also had EVERY of a nigh needs infant as described by Dr. Sears. He has grown into a spirited toddler--he is an introvert and intense (extremely intense) and very sensitive.

Now LO is starting to show signs of separation anxiety. He freaks out if I put him down. He never liked the swing, but now refuses the bouncy seat. He'll tolerate his exercise mat but that is about it. He has many of the features of a high needs baby, though not every single one like his big brother. He stilll tolerates DH holding him although it takes DH much longer to calm him.

So, are your LOs experiencing separation anxiety yet?

Is early separation anxiety tied in with high needs kids?

How do you deal with TWO high needs babies, especially if you have 2 under 2?

Like always, I feel like I am drowning.....and it doesn't help that DH is gone 14 hours for work today and I am on my own for bedtime.
post #2 of 13
This one is my first and I think she is high needs. It didn't help that she had colic due to food allergies/sensitivities in my milk. I feel like I am the only one who can comfort her and I have to go back to work next week.
My husband can comfort her sometimes but not always and he will be taking care of her while I am at work. Any advice you can give that might help would be welcome.
post #3 of 13
I don't consider N high needs... she usually doesn't cry as long as I"m holdin her. She used to be fine in swing/bouncer but is just starting to get cranky when I put her down, she screams like "what do you think your doing!?" I think it's cause she's more aware of her surroundings now. DH can hold her but he has to hold her facing out and usually standing unless she falls asleep. Noone else can really hold her. I wear her ALOT, alternating between the MT and wrap depending on her mood. I'll lay her next to me on the floor with her diaper off when awake while I do some computer work or help P with somethin, doesn't last long but gives me a little break from holdin. She must feel comfy with the diaper off. Sometimes I can lay her down while she sleeps but that's my favorite part, holding a sleeping baby, so I don't do it often. I swaddle N in the kiddopotomus swaddle when she seems really tired and is fighting sleep... Not sure if that helped or not
post #4 of 13
I don't have any advice...just .

I think mine is a pretty typical baby and she's still a lot of work, so I know you two are working very hard.
post #5 of 13
My DD hates baby carriers, she arches her back and trys to fling herself out of them. I have only just barely gotten her used to the baby hawk and only if I am constantly bouncing while I am wearing her. She hated to be swaddled too. She wants constant movement most of the time. I can (now) lie down with her and nurse her to sleep *sometimes*. She is definitely a handful.
post #6 of 13
My first was and is just as you described. From birth honestly he never wanted anyone else to hold him. He was a rather intense and sad baby, quick to temper or tears, introvert and has continued in this vein. He is also very unscheduled and we had lots of night crying.

Aiden is opposite in almost every way. He delights to see new people and places and likes to be held by different people. He is happier and laughs and smiles a lot. It makes me feel better because we are raising him the same way, its just a personality thing, not my parenting! Aiden is very scheduled and predictably falls asleep and wakes up around the same time each day since very early on.

I feel bad that the demands of my high-needs toddler take away from time just admiring the new baby, but such is life. It is hard and as you said, I feel like I'm drowning at times too. I think 2 kids might be it for us.

Oh yes, early separation anxiety is definitely tied-in. Our first son would not allow us to leave him with anyone, would not stay with daddy or grandparents, would certainly not stay in a nursery situation. I stopped going to church, attending classes, and going to the gym because the nursery attendant would come get me after 10-20 minutes each time saying he cried the whole time. He is 3 and pretty much still like that even when I've tried taking the hard line and just making him go in the nursery despite tears. On that note, a friend once gave me the advice never to feel guilty for taking some time away if you need it and I stand by that. If you need it, baby will be OK while you go on a walk or swim or restorative trip to the drugstore- you deserve to have a hot bath and a nap sometimes.

Bedtime is rough. I sleep sandwiched between the two some nights with standing instructions for DH to take him to his own bed when he gets home. GL!
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Steedalyn--both my boys have required constant movement while worn. With ODS, I bounced on an exercise ball while watching TV, did laps around my house in bad weather, walked outside in good weather. With YDS, I chase ODS while wearing, walk laps around the house, or just stand and bounce.....and yes, I do this 8 hours a day. It is exhausting.

I am glad to know I am not alone. It would be nice if one of the boys weren't high needs.
post #8 of 13
Both my kids have expressed a strong, almost passionate preference for me from a very early age.

Mine is just like Shine describes. I wouldn't say high needs, b/c actually she's quite content as long as things go her way, but boy, its a lot of work being the only one she wants. Poor DH can get a little love from her if I hold her facing him, and she does like to go with him to hang out outside in a hammock between two trees (for a little while).

Its totally exhausting.

Hugs to you and I hope you get a little respite, a little "me time" to recharge, etc. I have seen some of the "high needs" babies we knew grow into very self-assured, self-contained kids, so it happens.
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Emma!

I also should add that APing has definitely paid off with ODS, as he can play on his own occasionally now and can self-soothe. : If anything, my biggest problem with him is that he is very determined and intelligent and can figure out how to get into all sorts of trouble.

ODS was the way Emma and Shine describe--happy as logn as he got his way. YDS just isn't a happy baby, even if I do what he wants, so it makes it a bit harder for me. Reading and re-reading Dr. Sears is reminding me that I am doing the best for my YDS, but it is hard on some days.
post #10 of 13
My dd7 started seperation anxiety at about 2 months old and was so bad I'd have to cover her head in the car because she'd cry sooo hard and loud even when sitting next to one of her older sibs- she was fine when alone in the back and couldn't see anyone. No one was able to hold her except her dad or I- this lasted till she was over a year and then it was only family she was ok with. At 2 I had to put her in daycare (for work) and the fits i got on a daily basis was so heart breaking. It has gotten better to this day- but she still at 7 doesn't like sleepovers away- except for at my mom's. But she not at all shy around others. And not what I'd call high-needs (I've got 2 others that are)- she acutally on a consistant basis my easiest- temperment wise (maybe its because we are both Libras? )

My ds4 is my extremely high-needs child- extreem in everything he does.High intensity. I have to get him out of the house daily to wear off his energy and remember just to be paitent w/him AND myself. I need regular breaks too (like twice weekly) from him- sometimes it makes me feel like a bad mom and "what am I/have I done wrong" "why can't I do this w/him"- I've gone through early childhood w/4 others and feel did it well but he's soo different and there are days I feel as if i am failing him. But I try to remember its not just me and its not either of our faults- he is what he is and i am doing my best.

As for the Caleb he too is changing what worked to sooth him- last month it was all the swing and Not the bouncy seat. Right now he loves the bouncy seat and the swing is collecting dust (saving us on batteries thou). He was one that liked to be in his own space (ie not held all the time) now he's more aware that there are others out there and wants to be in the middle of things and not miss a minute of anything (he's starting to get bags, and circles under his eyes from lack of sleep- because he's fight all his naps and bedtime). I am starting to just lay him in the middle of the floor and leave him till he's ready to be done. i think it'd be easier on him if i had an excersaucer or something for him to sit upright in and play- he'd be more in the middle and could see a lot more! I know 6 months from now it will be completely different.

My oldest 2 are 14 months apart- I remember how hard that was. Hvaing to deal with 2 los that could't meet any of their own needs- i felt so pulled.which one did I care for first- the babe or the toddler. I was a sinlge mom at the time so i didn't even have a s/o to ask for help. But my mom did she took dd at least once a week and usually at los nap time so I could rest or do house work. I just tried to concentrate on what was the most important thing for the day or hour or minute. i found it got so much easier as ds got older and we were able to all enjoy things like the park and crafts and such. But believe or not in someways I found their age spacing easier than my others that are 3-4 yrs apart.

Hugs! and good luck! you're doing great!:
post #11 of 13
It is good to hear that I am not the only one feeling like a failure as a parent. I was just asking myself this morning "what am I doing wrong?" because DD was screaming her head off in the car and none of the usual things were working to calm her down. We went and bought a rocking chair this morning because my back is so sore from bouncing with her in the baby carrier all over the house all day yesterday. And I almost cried when I read what heatherweh said about her LO being unscheduled. I have never heard this term but this is totally my DD. She fights sleep and it seems impossible to get her on any kind of schedule. Then when she does go down for a nap she wants to sleep for like 2-3 hours in the middle of the day, wakes up for an hour or two, then wants to go back to sleep. Then she is up when we want to go to bed and fighting sleep again. It is exhausting to say the least. I also have to be very quiet when she is napping because she is an extremely light sleeper (is very sensitive to noises even when awake) so I can't get much done. Dishes are too loud, laundry is too loud, I might be able to get away with vacuuming sometimes because it is a droning noise but there isn't much else I can do. The bathroom stays clean because cleaning in there doesn't involve much noise. Plus my husband is stressed to the max as well since he is studying to take the BAR exam in a few weeks and I feel so bad asking him for help. I feel like I just keep waiting for it to get better and asking myself what am I doing wrong. Aside from not wearing her constantly I try to anticipate her needs as much as possible. She nurses whenever she wants (which is about every hour during the day time) so she doesn't even really cry much when she is hungry, at least I am good at recognizing when she wants to nurse before she gets upset. She also sleeps in our bed with us at night and many times I have to stay with her for her naps even. When will this start to get better? I have to go back to work next week (3 days a week) and I am soo worried about what will happen when I am gone for 8 hours. My husband will be taking care of her, I don't think she would do well in a daycare situation at all. And on top of everything else I am on a total elimination diet because she had such bad colic.
post #12 of 13
riley is a very happy little chica, but would probably prefer to be in my arms 100% of the time. i mean, could you blame her? why wouldn't a baby wanna be in his/her mama's arms all the time?

she's way more content than my other kiddos were but screamed for a couple hours when i went to get my hair cut b/c she was in a new place (my MIL's house) and not with me. poor thing. but if all is well with her world, she's a happy camper!
post #13 of 13
Originally Posted by steedalyn View Post
When will this start to get better? I have to go back to work next week (3 days a week) and I am soo worried about what will happen when I am gone for 8 hours. My husband will be taking care of her, I don't think she would do well in a daycare situation at all. And on top of everything else I am on a total elimination diet because she had such bad colic.
I'm glad my post helped a bit, in solidarity if not in practicality! I felt so blessed to have been able to stay home with my first son, because he HATED anyone else holding him, would completely freak out, as I mentioned above I had to give up gym membership, church services, and classes. He was even miserable on playdates or visiting with grandparents, etc. Many, many a ruined holiday with crushed expectations on all ends when DS simply melted down at the very sight of a loving relative trying to approach him!

I finally went back to work part time when DS was just 2 and honestly- he cried every day for hours when I was in training, then would nurse right when I got home and fall asleep on my lap exhausted. It was the worst two weeks ever and if I had tried it before he was 2 I don't think I could have steeled my resolve enough to do it. When does it get better? DS is 3 and cries and freaks out the moment he notices I'm not around. He has completely dissolved a few times at playdates and stuff when I've run to my car or the bathroom without telling him first and he then thought I had left him. He will stay with daddy now at least, so that has been a big improvement. He is very intense and as hard as it is to meet his needs as a baby, it is now even harder as a toddler and I need a break sometimes honestly.

You do what you have to do and obviously you're conscientious and will do the best you can to soften the blow to your LO. Try leaving for a couple hours at a time now to get your LO used it it a bit. Good luck! Hang in there!
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