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Kids' Health Kids' Health

4 year old anxiety?

Posted by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 12:43 PM
  • 8 Replies

Looking for ideas regarding my 4 year old boy. He has always been a "momma's boy", but the last month has been the worst. He will not join in at Sunday School, family functions, story hour or daycare for nearly an hour after we get there. He has started kicking and screaming when I leave him at daycare, but doesn't for my husband. He has never had an issue with this. The only trigger I can think of is having had his tonsills/adenoids out at the beginning of March...roughly a month ago. I wasn't so concerned until he started not joining in at family get togethers for nearly an hour after we get there. He stands by me, wants to be held and won't interact with anyone, including his grandparents who he adores. Yet, if they come to our house, he's fine. What gives?

by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 12:43 PM
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Replies (1-8):
TerriC
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 1:05 PM
1 mom liked this

I think he sees you as a source of comfort now, even more so than before.  After he had the tonsills etc taken out, it may have scared him (for lack of better words) and he is clinging to you because you gave him comfort at that time.  Hopefully it is just a phase!  Good luck!  =)

Vertical15
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 5:12 PM

Yes, maybe it is a just a phase.  I would keep working on it-keeping him as involved around other people as possible to let him know its ok to move away from you. 

new_mom808
by Andrea on Apr. 19, 2012 at 9:47 PM

 They do go through phases of seperation anxiety, where they seem to almost regress. I'm going through similar things w/ my 3 year old.

I would wait it out. There are times when I can, and it's appropriate, that he gets the extra cuddles, and attention that he's looking for. There are other times that I just have to be firm about things.

TonyaLea
by on Apr. 20, 2012 at 1:19 PM
1 mom liked this

My almost 4 year old daughter goes through stages like this.  We were recently having trouble with her crying when I dropped her off at daycare.  She was always happy and playing when I picked her up.  She had some separation issues from DH being gone with the military, and she also is a little shy, though it is getting better.

The only real things that I can suggest are just to encourage him to participate.  I used to tell DD how to ask other kids if they wanted to play, or how to walk up and introduce herself and ask the other kids' name, once she had the words she would sometimes be brave enough to approach them.   

For the daycare thing, i finally resorted to bribing.  I just had to get her past that initial freak out.  I started offering her a "special treat" of her choice after daycare if she was brave and didn't cry when I dropped her off.  After a few times of getting to go pick out stickers or go to the mall and get quarter candies, she became excited to go to daycare and show me how brave she was.

staceywinter04
by on Apr. 23, 2012 at 9:31 AM
1 mom liked this
Thanks! I think I'm going to try taking him to new playgroups on my days off, to help him adjust to new things. I also asked him why he doesn't like daycare...he tells me he doesn't like a little boy there who picks on him. Truth verified by daycare provider...this I didn't know. :(
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PrincessZ20
by on Apr. 23, 2012 at 12:26 PM

Hae you asked him why he's acting like that?  My 5 year old was throwing a fit over going to school every day, and it turned out that it was because he didn't like taking a nap.  We talked it through (he doesn't have to sleep, but he does have to rest), and he's been going without a problem now :) 

Good luck!!

staceywinter04
by on Apr. 26, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Well, this all came to a head yesterday at daycare. I had my son home with me over the weekend and the beginning of this week, as I was off work for a few days. We had 4 GREAT days. We went to the zoo, we met with a speech therapist for a speech screening, visited the chiropractor...all in all, great. I took him back to storyhour yesterday (which he refused to go to) and then dropped him off at daycare for a few hours so I could run some errands. I have never seen my child act the way he acted. Kicked/screamed/hit/ran out her house and flopped in the driveway, while becoming completely irrational. She finally took him from me, and I left. He did settle down after about 30 minutes. About 3 hours later, he was eating a snack with the other little kids when he looked at the little boy he says he doesn't like and proceeded to punch, kick & bite him. The daycare providers broke up the fight, but my son repeated this after they broke it up. One little girl told on my son, to which he screamed "Don't tell on me!!!!" as he took her by the head and shook her. If this didn't break my heart for him, I don't know what would. This is NOT my little boy. I took him to his medical doctor today, just to rule out anything medical (i.e. ear infection, bad tooth, sinus infection), but need to get to the bottom of this problem soon. :( My heart aches for my little boy, who is too little to express in words what he is feeling.

new_mom808
by Andrea on Apr. 30, 2012 at 9:01 PM

 You mentioned a speech therapist. Could he be frusterated? Could he be getting teased?

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