Posted by: rita | 2003/12/15

change in child pls help urgently 5 year old daughter seems to have changed alot since the birth of my 2nd child now 1 and a half.due to complications i was in hospital for much longer than expected and she was not allowed to see me.she was very upset then and continiously asked me why i had lied to her and stayed for so long in hospital.she never showed any hatred to the baby but became obsessed with her doll.although this has stopped now and she adores her sister,she still
1.refuses to sleep in her room
2.has become very,very shy in PUBLIC. (N.B. not at home )previously she was a complete extrovert! people say this is normal as kids grow but i'm most upset by this as i have to force her to reply to people.
3.refuses to stay over with anyone eg.granny-when she was smaller she stayed anywhere!
4.if i have to leave her for an hour somewhere she becomes upset-never crying aloud but wipes her tears away quietly so that 'nobody sees crying' times is more open towards our domestic worker than to me!
recently i had to go overseas and left both kids- this seems to have affected the above even more.
pls help as i want to have my child care free and relaxed again especially since she starts school next year.

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Dear rita,
Not too unusual and not likely to become a long-lasting problem. By chance, there have been two episodes, your hospitalization which unexpectedly lasted much longer than she expected and longer than she had been told, and your trip overseas, which have lead her to feel insecure, and scared that you can disappear for lengthy periods, causing a flare-up of separation anxieties. And it makes sense for you to be concerned at this time, as school will require longer periods of separation each day. A consultation or 2 with a child psychiatrist / child psychologist could help to settle these issues with her ( sometimes an informed third person can clarify things for her easier than someone as close as you ) before she starts school, or at aoround that time,.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: Zeena | 2003/12/15

Firstly: does she spend time in a creche at all? (Since the problems could lie there). If she doesn't, consider that she is one of those terribly sensitive children, where the slightest upset in her routine, in her "security zone", can cause her to be extremely insecure.

If you have made sure the problems did not begin outside your home, you might have to make allowances and realise that she is very sensitive to changes and atmosphere. The fact that she does not even want to stay with granny points to fearfulness and insecurity, which is not your fault at all. She just cannot cope with ANY kind of drastic change (you being in the maternity home for a while). When you leave to go shopping, she fears you won't come back at all because you once "disappeared" and didn't come back for what, to her, must have seemed like an eternity.

You have probably tried several ways to make her stay in her room, but I'll just mention the best tactics again (from experience): a night light and an open bedroom door; a new soft cuddly toy to sleep with her, or even a real kitty; a soothing bedtime story about fairies and elves in an enchanted wood (make it up!!) and suggesting that she is also as safe as a fairy in her bed (or something along those lines). It sounds so silly -- but I used to tell my sleepy little boys that they were like tiny fairies sleeping safely on leaves blowing in the wind outside ... up into the air, covered and warm ... etc!!!

I know it sounds silly, but your daughter probably has an over-active imagination, so use it to her advantage. The suggestion of warmth, safety, "nothing can touch you" and a soothing low night light might work wonders. And, of course, Mommy and Daddy are always there for her.

Reply to Zeena

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.