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What are we in for? My son is going to be starting daycare soon at 18 months.

My son is going to be starting daycare soon (he'll be 18 months old) and I'm starting to freak out that the transition might be really hard on him. I have to go back to work - I've already been home for way longer than I planned. I found a place that seems really nice and although I don't believe anyone can care for him like I can, this place seems like a great second to mom. He's only going in the mornings, and I plan to still pick him up after his nap so we can have time together (the husband and I are working together to make this possible). He seemed to like the place during our visits, but I know I'm currently the center of his world (like I should be) and I have heard that separation anxiety peaks at around 18 months. I'm just worried.

Has anyone started their kids in daycare/preschool around 18 months? What was the transition period like? How long did it take? I know people say it's "hard" but what does that mean? Is there anything you wish you did before starting your kid there? I know to just say goodbye and leave because lingering just makes things worse. I'll probably call to check in during the day until he's used to things. I just want to know what to expect and what can I do to make this easier on him.

And no bashing!! If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all.

Thanks for the help!!!


Asked by Sebbiemama at 10:25 PM on Jan. 1, 2011 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 22 (12,447 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (3)
  • My son started at 6 weeks, so I don't know as to the age thing, but I will tell you this...he will cry...and so will you...and that is okay. Don't let him see you cry though. I STILL cry when dropping my son off sometimes because it is hard to walk away from your child when you want to stay. It will be hard for both of you at first, but it WILL get easier, I promise. I would let your child bring a comfort item, like a blankie or something to ease the transition. Children thrive off familiarity, so this would be the first thing I would do. I also let my son stay at his daycare for only an hour a few times so that the first time wasn't so dramatic...this isn't a necessity, but it helps. After a while, he may be EXCITED to go to daycare. He is going to make friends there that will advance him in ways that will AMAZE you. My son was around kids much older than him, so he started talking, walking, etc. WAY early.GL!

    Answer by TitusMom7 at 1:53 AM on Jan. 2, 2011

  • I say take him there and stay for the first few times, before you are meant to start back. Stay the whole time. Until he is used to the place, maybe starts getting comfy with the routine and the new woman or women who will be caring for him.

    Walk out the door, come back. Go to the bathroom. Walk out for 5 minutes. 15 minutes. Teach him that you are coming back and always will. Then when it gets longer and longer between you coming back, it won't be traumatic.

    Anyway, that's what I would do.I think it would be so scary to suddenly be left in a strange place with strange people who you don't know or trust at all. But idk how much time you have. If you have flexibility with time, that's how I would do it.

    Answer by Bellarose0212 at 5:14 AM on Jan. 2, 2011

  • Aww it will be okay....having worked in a daycare this is probably the hardest age to start! Not to scare you.....but in a few days I promise he'll be fine. Since he is going consistently then there shouldnt be any problems...When you say goodbye make it short and not prolong it if he is throwing a fit...get out asap, that only makes it worse!

    Answer by MrsPilat at 3:23 PM on Jan. 2, 2011