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Why does my 6 month old behave differently at daycare?

My 6 month old is cared for by his Grandmother 3 days a week, a cousin 1 day, and he goes to an in-home daycare 1 day a week. He is the best baby until he goes to daycare.

I'm told he cries the entire time he is at daycare. The caregiver is unable to put him down without him crying. He has been exposed to other children, not to this extent, but he has been around and interacted with other children and babies.

When he's anywhere else including home, he will sit and play by himself for long periods of time, but at daycare she claims she has to be within arms reach the whole day. She's telling me that she can't continue to neglect the other children. What can I do?

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Children and Separation
by: Mother of four

Depending on the age of your child and how long they have been with mommy, it takes more time when they are older for the separation from you.

It is never easy to leave your child when they are crying. I know the feeling several times over. I would try and get out for a couple of hours, I would leave my two oldest with family, and they were approx. 2 & 4; they screamed like they were being killed.

It took many times before they stopped. The earlier you can start leaving your children with others the better.

I know the initial home time is necessary but after the first 4-6 weeks it is best to start letting the grandparents and your sisters and brothers, allow to keep the baby over night.

It will make it much easier for you when the real separation starts and keeps you away everyday.

Some Solutions to Try
by: Anonymous

Tell the daycare provider that this is normal. My mom does daycare and she has 2 kids around a year and a 7 moth old, they do the same thing.

What she does is stop picking up the kids when they cry to be picked up. Instead she only carries them when they are eating and talks to them and plays with them.

If she is carrying him and giving in to it every time your son is going to take advantage of it and keep crying to be picked up. Babies are smart!

They know who will and won't give in. With you and your parents your son knows not to do that, but with the daycare provider he has learned he can get away with it.

The only other reason he could demand attention is if she keeps him in a playpen most of the time. You said she has to stay in an arms reach of him and if she is saying she is neglecting other kids for yours that means she is probably staying in one room while the others are playing in the other room.

So, since he is alone in the playpen and there is nobody to play with if she leaves the room he feels alone and abandoned. Those are the only things I can think of.

I would say try out a different daycare and see if you have the same problems. If not, then she was doing something to make him demand attention or she was giving in to every cry.

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