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How do I get my daughter to stay at daddy's house w/o freaking out?

My daughter is 5 and a half and my ex husband and I have been separatedd for 3 yrs. She will refuse to to talk to him for 8 months at a time and then all of a sudden she wants everything to do with him. 4 days ago she said she wanted to go to daddy's house and I explained to her that she will have to go and mommy stay here. Every morning for 4 mornings she would ask if she could go. Finally, today he has a couple days off and comes and gets her for the weekend. I made sure she REALLY wanted to go. Now that she is there, she is screaming and crying that she wants me. My ex feel hopless, like giving up, and said he will never take her again. How can I get her to go w/o flipping out when the sun goes down? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Asked by Kymmiluv at 11:03 PM on Jul. 23, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (7)
  • It has to be for a few hours at first/ then add afew more hours/ then an overnight visit- especially if this is something they r both not used to on a regular basis. Young kids love their normal routines.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:18 PM on Jul. 23, 2009

  • My advice: baby steps. Let her go over there for a few hours on a consistent basis, and when she's more comfortable with the new environment, attempt another over night. She's so used to her mommy being there for bed time, it's probably quite a shock for her.

    Just make sure her visits are consistent. That's the key.
    GL mama, I bet this is hard on you too!

    Answer by milfalicious08 at 11:19 PM on Jul. 23, 2009

  • I agree with the pp's. Let her go over, during a good time of day, if she is a morning person, then first thing in the morning, and spend a few hours with him. Make sure he has fun planned, like going to the park or ice cream, something she will enjoy for the first visit. Let her get used to him and then work towards more time.

    Answer by Petie at 12:00 AM on Jul. 24, 2009

  • My brother had the same problem when we were children. His dad would have him call and tell my mom all about what he was doing at his house, and tell her goodnight and stuff. It helped him alot, he didn't even complain about goign over there after awhile. Good lukck I hope it works out and he takes her more often.

    Answer by crzy4luvfrmu18 at 12:03 AM on Jul. 24, 2009

  • Take baby steps and make sure you are being very positive. Maybe go in his house and hang out with her for a bit and let her know you are proud of her for hanging out with her daddy and can't wait to hear about her adventures with him. Don't let her see you be sad when you leave and reassure her that she will have a good time. Her dad probably should line up a fun activity for her maybe even exchange her at a park or somewhere fun and distracting. Maybe have her go with him in the morning and come home at night and then eventually add overnights. I would stick to a schedule with visits if possible since kids her age need routine and something to count on. In time she will get more comfortable and enjoy her time with her daddy. Good luck to you.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:32 AM on Jul. 24, 2009

  • here's a thought, do you both have a webcam? when she is at dad's house tell her she can talk to you via webcam before bed.
    I had 3 girls with my ex and they went through this. All I could do at the time was tell them that it was daddy's turn. They would cry at the drop off ( we met half way ) but come back all happy spilling over with happy things they did. sometimes I wonder if it's nothing more then them controlling the whole situation. Some kids like to have their control when things are out of their control.

    Answer by wheresthewayout at 12:37 AM on Jul. 24, 2009

  • Would switching homes with your ex for a night work out? This way, they can be together and she will be in a familiar environment

    Answer by rkoloms at 9:54 AM on Jul. 24, 2009

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