DD will be 18 months in a couple weeks. We do the whole AP thing: BFing on demand, cosleeping, rocking to sleep... etc etc. I'm a SAHM and when DD was two months old we moved across the country, far from any friends or relatives. Consequently, DD has never had a baby sitter. It is time. It is time for me and I feel it is important for her to be able to be comfortable with someone else ... but how do I do it?
I've had a babysitter coming a couple hours at a time, twice a week. I hide upstairs in my office, getting things done while the babysitter plays with DD, takes her for walks etc. But DD has never gone the full two hours without crying for me and begging to nurse. It is getting worse and worse. Now when the babysitter arrives DD starts getting clingy. I've tried both sneaking away while DD is engrossed in something and the opposite - saying a big goodbye before heading upstairs. Nothing works.
Today we tried a different tactic. Babysitter arrived, I went upstairs, within 5 minutes DD was screaming to nurse. From previous experience I know she can go a long time like that and does not calm for the sitter. So I nursed her. Then I said a big goodbye, got in the car and left. It was awful, she screamed like she was being tortured. Ugh.
So tell me, how do I make this a smoother transition? Will I ever be able to do anything without DD? How do I help her get used to the sitter? How do I persuade her she can wait until the sitter's time is over before she nurses?