Toddler crying

I work outside the home about 30hrs/wk. My MIL stays with my 18 month old son while I’m at work, an arrangement we’ve had for over a year. Over the past couple of weeks, my son has started crying when the doorbell rings in the mornings (signalling her arrival), which I understand because he doesn’t want me to leave, and associates her arrival with my departure. He’s easily consoled – we usually read “one last book” before I go, to help him transition. However, he will also occasionally cry after I come home. Then he runs to me and will relax after we sit and chat and snuggle as he cries for a few minutes. Never long (I’m good at distractions), just a couple of minutes. Why the tears at my return?

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One Response to Toddler crying

  1. Mommy Psychologist says:

    At 18 months, babies go through another period of separation anxiety. There are two big windows of separation anxiety that usually occurs. One is at 9 months and the other is at 18 months. When you are leaving in the morning, he is crying over your departure. However, he quickly settles down because he is also attached to your MIL. So, when you come home, he has tears because he knows that another person he cares about (your MIL) is going to leave.

    The good news: It will pass shortly.

    The even better news: He’s a really attached child. He is secure in his relationships and knows which people he cares about.

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