Nothing can ruin a morning commute like a tearful and torturous goodbye with your child. Of course the question is, who is really more tortured, the parent or child? I am willing to bet that Mommy or Daddy is the one holding on to the emotions resulting from a terrible goodbye.
In my experience, the children being dropped off in my daycare are usually finished with their goodbye drama before their parents are even in their car. Many times it is a show that is created for the audience of Mommy and Daddy.
This morning, a two-year-old little girl had a huge tantrum in front of her mother at drop-off time. I felt so sorry for her Mommy, because I know how hard it is to deal with this first thing in the morning. But, within two minutes of her mother leaving, this same girl was in the best mood. She asked me for a hug and kiss and wanted to play in the housekeeping corner. It was obvious to me that the drama was just that – a theatrical performance.
Let us be honest. Children, especially toddlers, cry for many reasons. Some are completely valid. They are frustrated, hungry, tired, teething, coming down with a cold, scared, hurt, etc. I don’t want to invalidate the feelings of anyone, especially a child. The problem, however, is that children quickly learn how to use crying or screaming to their advantage. So, some become master manipulators.
Children are also incredibly in tune with their parents emotions. If you are stressed or in a hurry, your child will not cooperate for a reason. If you are sad or distressed, your child will pick up on these feelings and will respond in ways that may cause you more distress.
This is why a second-time mother will usually have more success nursing. When a mother is confident in her abilities and relaxed, then her baby will be more relaxed and receptive to the nursing. This idea is applicable to all children as they grow.
I would not allow your child’s goodbye drama to ruin your day. More than likely it is not a reflection that your child is hating daycare or angry with you for leaving him/her for the day.
If you are having a difficult time dropping your child off at daycare or school, I have created a post with advice to Ease the Pain and Parent Guilt of Your Child’s Goodbye Drama for DC Metro Mom.
Does your child create goodbye drama? Please visit the Tiny Steps Mommy Facebook page to continue this discussion.