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If your baby is antisocial

(9 Posts)
passingthrough1 Tue 21-Feb-17 08:34:12

Not sure what word to use other than antisocial, though it sounds quite ridiculous to describe a baby.

My baby is perfectly happy and laughs regularly with myself and DP. Has never smiled at anyone else that I can think of. More generally, if I'm carrying him or he's in my lap and someone smiles at him or waves he will usually burst into tears (even people he should be familiar with). I've noticed that if I wave at other babies in similar situations they will often beam back, which is the only reason it has occurred to me that my baby isn't doing this. He does not enjoy lots of attention or people looking at him but will be perfectly content playing in the corner with me or his father. He's 7 and a half months. I know this can be a clingy phase but he's never smiled at others that I can think of ...

My question is, if your baby is like this how do you get childcare and go back to work? What kind of setting is best and how the hell do you manage?!

Is there anything I can do? We have some time as I'm taking the year but honestly I can just see him crying non stop. I go to some baby groups but don't enjoy going to them every day but do try and do a few. He's fine at them but too much attention from the session leaders and he'll get upset.

Bluebellevergreen Tue 21-Feb-17 08:38:48

I like your baby. He has personality, he sounds a bit like me smile

Sorry not helpful, I think nothing wrong with him though, humans have different personalities.

He sounds great 😀

passingthrough1 Tue 21-Feb-17 08:50:33

Haha thanks. I think basically he's got this from me as I'm an introvert.

When I spoke to the HVs (again looking for advice re: childcare) they were just checking for eye contact and milestones as if I'm looking for some kind of diagnosis .. I'm definitely not looking to label a small baby with ASD or something! I'm just freaking myself out with the idea of him in a loud, busy nursery inconsolable.

I'm trying to be as gentle a parent as I can be remembering how I was (and how my mother would try to tear me off her legs when I got shy or told me off for "flapping") - so I'm bedsharing and ok to breast feed for as long as he needs, and I don't ever leave him with anyone other than his Dad. But all of this doesn't seem to bode that well with leaving him 9 hours a day 5 days a week very soon!

Thegiantofillinois Tue 21-Feb-17 08:54:21

If he's like Dd, he will cry when left, then attach to certain caregivers. Due to circumstances beyond our control, Dd ended up in nursery, then 2 different cm. Same issues each time. She's now in school and has attached herself to her teacher. She's still my no.1cling-on though, which makes me feel v suffocated.

GandTforme Tue 21-Feb-17 08:55:25

One of my twins is like this. Happy and smiley with me, DH or my mum but anyone else talking to her/picking her up (even other relatives that she knows and sees regularly) often causes a meltdown. Her sister isn't so bad so I think it's a personality thing! She is 8.5 months now and has been like it sInce 4 months ish. I had the same worries as you, how on earth would she cope in a childcare setting! But luckily I am only going back part time and my lovely mum has agreed to look after them, bless her. If family isn't an option maybe you could look for a childminder that your DS could build a relationship with? I find the more often my girl sees someone the more likely she is to be ok with them (or at least the meltdown doesn't last as long grin )

AChickenCalledKorma Tue 21-Feb-17 08:59:12

My older daughter was similar as a baby. She went to a childminder and I think the quiet environment of someone's home was better for her than a nursery would have been. Being honest, it did take quite a while for her to settle in, and there was a lot of crying in the first few weeks. But she wasn't going every day and I think it would have been easier for her if she was seeing the childminder more frequently.

Once they had got used to each other, things were fine and they still have a great relationship 14 years later! ( Childminder is also a friend).

Taking the long view, i can totally assure you that she bears no scars from those early days of settling in. She's still pretty reserved, but she functions perfectly well at school, has nice friends and is growing into a fine young woman. We are just quiet people, and that's OK.

Ds1 was a d to some extent still is incredibly shy. He never smiled at strangers and even as a small baby would hide his face in a hood or hat. He preferred nursery to 1 to 1 type places. Even at a year old because there was far less focused attention on him and plenty going on around him to distract him. He did bond very well with 2 of the nursery workers and it was so lovely that someone else got to see the funny happy little boy we seen at home.
He's 11 soon and is still very introverted and quiet in new situations but his confidence grows all the time. He would have loved to avoid birthday parties and things when he was small but I took him to them all. Let him watch from the side not leaving him but not letting him cling on either. Reassuring him I wouldn't leave so he was fine sitting beside me. He eventually realised people were having loads more fun than him and nothing awful was happening to them. He was older than some of his friends before he was happy to stay at a party alone but now he loves going to most of them.
He still doesn't smile much at strangers to the extent I could actually name situations where he has and he still likes group situations where there is less focus on him individually. But a lovely warm caring nursery really helped by not forcing him and having the luxury of not being tied to lots of enforced socialisation of a smaller child minder ratio. He had more opportunity to just mill around a bit watching and joining in his own time at nursery.

passingthrough1 Wed 22-Feb-17 19:49:44

Thank you for your comments. This reassures me that somehow we'll get there. I think I'm going to try and go to more library rhyme time type sessions as at least then he can see a lot more adults and babies without anyone trying to interact with him (as they do at the groups we go to, clearly outside what he is comfortable with). I've made an appointment to visit the nursery we are supposed to be going to and I'll see what they think about settling in, and if it doesn't seem right try and approach some childminders.

CobsAhoy Wed 22-Feb-17 21:28:31

My DD was like this up until about 15months, then she suddenly became much more sociable for no discernible reason, so there might also be a developmental angle to it. They are so different at a year than they are at 7months, yours might be social butterfly by the time you return to work!

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