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Well, my DD is experiencing separation anxiety. She freaks out if people get too close, even if I'm holding her. Taking her to my in laws' church on Sunday was a disaster b/c everyone wanted to hold her.<br><br>
So many times separation anxiety is framed as a personal weakness of the child that needs to be cured with a little tough love. What can I say to people to put a positive spin on it - something that emphasizes DD's growth and development or individuality. Help!
 

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MY eldest DD went through this, and really still doesn't like strangers being in her space.<br><br>
When people would make comments, I would just smile proudly and say "Yup, she knows where the good stuff is ~ with Mama!"<br><br>
Seriously, I know that people can be so rude in their comments. I don't think there is a MORE judged group on Earth than Babies! They are held up to standards that we certainly don't hold for ourselves or our fellow adults. Imagine, if you were to enter into a room full of strangers and a woman suddenly jumped up and pulled you into her lap! It's ridiculous, really.<br><br>
If you think about it, it is adaptive to have the reaction that your daughter has. These are people that are not known to her, and why should she feel comfortable being in an uncertain situation? With Mommy = safe & secure.<br><br>
Also, remember that babies are not even able to distinguish themselves from being distinct from their mothers until they are almost a year old. They think of Mama & themselves as being one entity, and separation from Mama is biologically ingrained in them to be strange.<br><br>
HTH! Forget about them. Smile & love her up <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Remember, it's not what they think that's important, it's what you know to be true.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Anyone else?<br><br>
Also, my DH's feelings have been hurt lately b/c DD doesn't seem to enjoy his company like she used to. Any words of wisdom for him?
 

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We're going through the same kind of thing. It amazes me that people can get offended at the reaction of a 6 mo baby.<br><br>
I often say that he is "startled" and needs time to get used to his surroundings before he will go to other people.<br><br>
Sometimes I'll say that he's tired, and cranky because he didn't get his nap. (This provides a perfect opportunity to snuggle him down and away from the stranger.)<br><br>
It's not really a positive spin, but it keeps feelings from getting hurt. Most of the time when this comes up, it would be pointless to get into a debate about attachment parenting. Sometimes it's just easier to say something that they can't argue with. I don't want to invite any criticism about how I'm raising my son, so I say whatever will shut down the conversation fastest.<br><br>
As far as your dh's reaction, maybe it will help if he talks with other dads. Your dd's behavior is completely normal for her age, and he may need to adjust his expectations. Do you three have plenty of time to spend together? It seems like dh and ds have much more fun when ds knows I'm in the room. Does he agree with AP? Here's a relevant link from Dr. Sears:<br><a href="http://www.askdrsears.com/faq/fb3.asp" target="_blank">http://www.askdrsears.com/faq/fb3.asp</a><br><br>
Maybe someone else will have better suggestions. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

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Hi, we're going through the same sorts of things. DD is 11 months and is tentative when there's more than a couple other people around. It's just weird to me because when I take her to the in-laws for instance all the attention automatically goes on her, and she's expected to act a certain way. My dh is always saying that she's just tired, needs a nap, etc if she's not all smiles. I used to say that, but generally I don't make excuses anymore. I mean, she's allowed to just be who is she is and I don't feel the need to explain her moods.<br><br>
A few weeks ago, my nephews godmother and her baby was at SILs house and so we brought dd over there for them to "play". Well we got there and MIL and FIL and SIL and these other people were there. Dd and other baby were on the floor and everyone else was sitting in the room in a big circle just staring at the babies waiting for them to do something. It made ME feel awkward anyway. Then dd starts to cry really sadly and everyone starts LAUGHING and she's just sitting there crying and dh says something about her needing a nap and I just took her to me and sat her on my lap and held her and said, "oh just leave her alone!". Poor thing! Then after a while she was fine but I do agree that people hold babies to this standard and it's just really weird to me.<br><br>
Anyway! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I totally know where you're coming from. Oh, and she's hot and cold on her daddy. She loves to play with him but when she wants me, she wants me! And I wouldn't have it any other way! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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<div style="font-style:italic;">Anyone else?<br><br>
Also, my DH's feelings have been hurt lately b/c DD doesn't seem to enjoy his company like she used to. Any words of wisdom for him?</div>
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I think sometimes people are offended or embarassed when a small child doesn't react to their attempts at interaction and then they react/say something in the negative.<br><br>
I would just respect your dd's feelings during this period, and try not to worry about what others think. I know it's a hard stage, it will get better. Smile politely at others during those moments, and feel good that you aren't forcing your dd into the arms of someone that she doesn't want to be with. Like someone else posted, you could say something like "Shes tired" or "It's just a little busy in here." Truthful and respectful.<br><br>
With regard to your DH - One of my son's went through a period where he didn't want much to do with my DH as well. It does pass, and I think my DH's patience with it helped the situation immensely...even if it was frustrating for him.<br><br>
Good Luck <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/heartbeat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="heartbeat">
 
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