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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know you're all thinking I'm lucky, but sometimes I feel like this is weird. My DD (11 months) has no fear of strangers at all (she loves them, in fact) and does not seem to mind it at all or really even notice when I am gone. I mean, she's obviously fond of me, smiles at me and hugs me, but she shows no distress if I disappear. If she can hear my voice she may come and seek me out, but that's about it.

I am a SAHM, but she is very much co-parented during all the hours that my husband is home. She is a happy kid and doing very well developmentally, so I'm not concerned that she has a problem, but it's just...strange, sometimes. Anyone else have a kid like this? It's noticeable enough that others comment.
 

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My DS, 22 mos, has some anxiety but does well if left with DS or my mom. He will ask for mama but is reassured when told I'm going to be back soon. He is not clingy in social situations but comes to me if he needs reassurance or something startles him or makes him unsure. He's more confident than a lot of kids his age. I have friends whose toddlers really cling and don't want to talk to anyone but Mommy, but my son is very social in comparison. So while he is not as independent as your child, I kind of know what you mean.

I bet your DD is very confident and secure. She will probably grow up to be a very outgoing and assertive person, which is great! Look at it this way, all the work you have done to make her feel secure is paying off early, probably because she just has that kind of personality.

The only thing I think we have to be careful of is instilling a sense of caution eventually so that they do not just go running up to any stranger! It's a tricky balance, but I guess that's another thread.

I'm sure your DD is perfectly normal!
 

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My 18 month-old DS has been like this from day 1. Sometimes it's awkward because have moments of wanting to be a very private person, and yet I have this little Holly-go-Lightly child.

While I agree that it's a great thing (although I should mention that with tiredness in the equation he's a cling-on), he has no "filters", for lack of a better word. No sense that there is danger in the world. I relish that, and yet, I find myself fearful. (IE: he'll run up to any person, animal, inanimate object with a smile and an open heart). Now that he's faster than the tasmanian devil, I have to watch VERY carefully in crowded situations, but living on an island eases my tension.

It's a mixed blessing. I think with children like that there's a very delicate balance at this age between accepting and encouraging the inherent trust in the world, and introducing the concept of discerning situations, if that makes any sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by IslandMamma
My 18 month-old DS has been like this from day 1. Sometimes it's awkward because have moments of wanting to be a very private person, and yet I have this little Holly-go-Lightly child.

Oh yes, me too! I am not introverted per se, but I'm not someone who goes up and strikes up a converstaion with total strangers, and that's basically what my child does. I have to be prepared to chat with random people at all times--it can actually be a bit embarrassing.

I am also concerned about safety when she gets older. I feel like she would go with anyone who smiled at her and spoke to her in a friendly way.
We frequently get comments that she is a "flirt," which I find creepy.

I do realize that in some ways this is lovely (people find her very charming and fun) but it is just a weird experience for me. And I read the stuff that says that stranger and separation anxiety are normal and a sign of good attachment, and can't help feeling weird.
 

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My dd was like this until just recently (she just turned 15 mos.). She was about 13 months before she even said "Mama" and I used to joke that we only had a business relationship.
Well, right now she is 180 degrees from what she used to be. She wants me ALL THE TIME, freaks out if I step out of the room, and when anything happens that doesn't suit her she immediately starts calling for me. Example: Daddy won't let her stand up in the highchair, it's "Mama, Mama, Mama, Maaa-maaa." It's been kinda nice, but today for the first time it was a little overwhelming... it's a lot of responsibility when you're the only one that will do, 24/7!


Anyway, you never know, your little one may change in the blink of an eye.
 

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My ds (20 mo) had no stranger anxiety up until about 2-3 months ago. I thought it was a little odd, but really appreciated the ease of interacting with people he didn't know. Now, he needs to "warm up" to new people for a while before feeling comfortable with them interacting physically with him. Sometimes if a stranger crosses his comfort zone and gets too close before he's ready, he'll let out an ear piercing siren that obviously communicates that they've gone too far. Sometimes it's a little embarassing because it startles people within a 1/2 mile radius (
), but I appreciate knowing that he won't go off with just anyone. Sometimes I do miss the lack of the screeching siren that he does now.

So don't worry, she may develop a little more stranger anxiety as she gets older and more physically independent from you. She may just feel entirely safe right now, knowing you always will be there for her. I think as some kids gain more independence by crawling, walking, exploring, etc., they begin to realize that they are not actually attached to you.
 

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Both my kids had very little.

My dd had gone to daycare before I finished college. I chalked it up to other people partly raising her. But---- my ds was the same way and I almost never left him.

My kids are loving and warm, I feel they have had a good life but I was baffled that they always cried when they saw me arrive to pick them back up; instead of when I dropped them off.

Once in a while dd would give old ladies the wary eye but nothing like I've seen with some kids.
 

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My son used to be that way. Sometimes he still doesn't care whether I leave or not. But he's more "parent-oriented" now.

Slightly off-topic, philomom, but I read somewhere that the reason your children may have cried upon your arrival to pick them up was because they feel comfortable releasing all the tension with you and not with their alternate caregivers. Just a thought.

Cheers and Happy New Year!
 

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My daughter is very extroverted and easy going around strangers. She won't always go to them right away, but in a very short time she will.

This is tremendously satisfying to me because from birth to, oh, about 9 months my inlaws would go on and on about how she's 'overbonded' because of the co-sleeping and because we never let her lay there and cry. (It's good for them, apparently. snork.) They were (and still are) mad that we never leave her with them, and they told us she'd be a nervous, clingy child.

Now they go on about how she has no fear and is so secure, but of course they still don't make the connection that it has anything to do with our parenting. (And maybe it doesn't, but I'd still like to get the credit for something good for once!!!)
 

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One of my twins has a little separation/stranger anxiety (not real clingy though unless he is sick or tired) but the other hasn't shown any signs of separation anxiety and very little stranger anxiety either (they are 10 1/2 months). I was actually worried till I read your post! It is hard not to compare my guys! Anyway, my pediatrician told me at 9 months not to worry that he would have it to some degree eventually--and I read that it peaks at 10-18 months...so maybe our babies will have it late (or very little!)
 

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DS#1 was like that. He didn't even flinch if I left him. That made it a lot easier when we had to take him to daycare at 18 months. I first time I left him there, he didn't even notice I left. I was bawling, but he was happy as could be. But that didn't last......... at around age 3 he started to get anxious at times, if I left him at playschool or with friends who watched him for me. He's still not bad, though. He understands I'll be back.

DS#2........ as soon as someone new walks into our house, he instantly runs to me or dh and asks to be held. He then buries his head into my shoulder. If someone "new", says "hello" to him at church or in any situation, he hides his head. He is very shy. It takes a while, but he eventually warms up to the new person...... and he is never happy if I leave him. (Although I am told, he stops crying as soon as I leave.)
 

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My son (15 months) has no problem being without me. I am a SAHM, but my mom will watch him on occasion, and it's almost like he could care less if I leave. He will even wave at me as I go. He loves people and will go with anyone, which scares me too. I have been wondering if his behavior is normal, so it is somewhat reassuring to hear that other children behave as he does.
 

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DD1 is the same as all yours. She is not shy and will go to almost anyone. Now at 2yrs old, she does reacts more with stranger anxiety but it doesn't last.

When she was 14mths, We went to a LLL meeting, well, she hugs the ladies there during the meeting. We had never meet anyone before. She would go see one and sit on their lap or hug them. They were all surprise. I was too.

She is so social that she needs the interaction with others. It's only been since this summer that she will wait a few before going to someone. Also if I talk to someone, she will warm up faster than if I don't know the person either.
 

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Connor was like that up until about 18 months and then a complete turnaround. He was shy, wouldn't look at people, would bury his head in my shoulder, etc. Now at 23 months he's just starting to come out of it and be friendly again.
 

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My 2-1/2 yo is an extrovert and has been since he was born. As an infant in his sling, he used to smile, wave, do anything he could to engage any person he saw. I can't tell you how many times the person behind me in the grocery line said, "Babies always seem to love me" which of course was funny because he acted the same way to everyone (but we never told them that!).

When we arrive at the park, he yells, "hi friends!" to complete strangers. He remembers people's names incredibly well. He'll hold hands, sit on laps, and energetically play with new people, young or old. And he'll cry when they leave. What I've learned from all this is that people really get a kick out of being found to be special and fun, even if all the attention is coming from a toddler. Everywhere we go, people who I don't really remember DO remember my son and his name.

It's been interesting, in part because I'm not an extrovert! He's never seemed to have separation anxiety, but then again I've only left him once for 4 hours, and he stayed with his grandma. He is very attached to me, though, and only mama will do in many circumstances.

Truvie
 

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our separation anxiety didn't emerge until after 1 year old... to the OP maybe yours never will, but there's something about object permanence I think that develops around 1 year old. It's definitely better now that she's almost 2. But 13-16 months was really rough.
 

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Very much so! My four year old has never been reticent, although she's not overly engaging with strangers. But there's no fear there. My 16 month old is very engaging-she smiles at everyone and interacts with everyone. I keep an extra close eye on her because heaven forbid someone were to grab her she would probably not protest.
 
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