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7 months old won't stay with DH

(6 Posts)
NicknameAlreadyTaken Sun 31-Aug-08 09:30:32

My DD spends most of the time with me but when DH is home I try to let him spend as much time with her as I can. I still BF her and she sleeps in bed with us.
She's been having what looks like a separation anxiety since she was around 5 months old - first crying in friends' houses and when spoken to by strangers, then crying when I was leaving the room etc, but was mostly OK when left with my DH. Now she's fine with strangers, but won't stay with DH more than a couple of minutes and won't let him rock her to sleep or comfort her when she's crying.
DH becomes increasingly miserable and feels offended and desperate and I'm getting increasingly tired as I can't get any help from DH with DD's night wakings.
It looks like DD thinks that when DH picks her up it means I'll be leaving, so she immediately starts looking around for me, reaching out and crying and will immediately wake up if half asleep, etc.

Any ideas on how to help DD to let DH get involved?
Or shall we just wait till her separation anxiety diminishes?

AbbeyA Sun 31-Aug-08 09:46:53

As it looks as if she thinks you will go as soon as DH has her I think it would be a good idea for him to do fun things with her while you stay in the room but don't get involved. She will gradually associate him with pleasure.

ilovemydog Sun 31-Aug-08 09:51:30

Agree with Abbey - she associates daddy with mommy leaving. Do it in stages. Daddy comes home, and you still hold her. Daddy comes into the room and maybe he holds her, but gives her back to you. Then gradually, leave her with him with you still in the room, but she leaves etc.

AbbeyA Sun 31-Aug-08 09:55:50

You could also let him do more, bath her etc while you stay in the room. Don't get involved, but be around doing odd jobs or reading etc.Be there but ignore them,she needs time to build up a relationship with him and she won't do it while anxious.

PavlovtheCat Sun 31-Aug-08 10:00:12

I found that I was the only one who could console DD whilst she still fed from me, DH would be able to have a cuddle, but not much else.

Not that it stopped him. He would change her nappy even if she cried, would wash her even if she cried.

He also became quite upset at some points, felt rejected, and unwanted.

However, I stopped feeding her at 10 months, not for that reason, and it was almost instantly that she showed more affection for DH, he could passify her, spend more time with her, but her to bed.

I think the bond you have when breastfeeding does, certainly for some babies, make the relationship you have almost exclusive to all others for a while.

NicknameAlreadyTaken Tue 09-Sep-08 12:56:00

Thanks to all who replied!
DD is now better with DH in many situations after I kept staying in the room after handing her to DH. Although trying not to be involved mostly doesn't work. Maybe she thinks I'm ignoring her and gets even more upset.

The thing that helps a lot is trying to make a game out of hand-over itself. I will count to 3 swinging her back and forth towards DH and then rocket her to DH. He then passes her back to me in the same way. After passing her back and forth like that a couple of times she's more calm and stays with DH better. It also helps to play bo-peep with her when one of us is leaving the room - hiding behind the door and showing up a couple of times before leaving.

Although she still won't stay with him in the evening, when she's tired, etc. But hopefully it will come.

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