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Old 11-15-2019, 07:36 AM
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Default The Infant with Separation Anxiety Who Shoves Everything and also Hates Me

I've got that kid. 13 mos, only child, parents seem typical of this generation of white-collar American parents--a little too clingy but not over the top.

Infant has been here for two and a half months now, full time, and isn't adjusting one little bit. We have hunger strikes that last 3/4 of the day, swatting the bottle away and flinging the food on the floor. I think feeding is also a challenge because I suspect the parents are feeding "healthy" non-nutritious food that doesn't get shoved away.

Naps last all of 10 minutes, and because this child's default state is to open their eyes and then open their mouth and whine, they keep the other infant awake, too.

It's an hour of fussing, half an hour of cheerful play, an hour of fussing, half an hour of cheerful play . . . every day. Picking this kid up gets me shoved in the chest and swatted at. If I make too much eye contact or get down on the floor with them, the fussing starts.

I've tried my regular method of babywearing to get the kid used to me. That has worked with other kids who just needed to learn I'm a safe, kind of chubby place to cuddle and rest, but this one just shoves continuously. It's a behavior. I've seen the parent bottle-feeding and the kid is shoving the bottle away from the parent, too, but keeps getting fed.

I'm waiting to interview some other folks. The issue is that my big kids all aged out this summer and my other enrolled infant's family is BFFs with this infant's family, so if I term now I'll probably be without any income for a few weeks and that's not ideal right now; we've had a lot of medical bills recently and we're already having to tap my mom for some expenses. So I need to have a few families on my wait list before I terminate, just in case quitting this family also means that I lose the other one.

I'm not in hell. I'm just not enjoying this, and I like enjoying my job. Getting shoved when I offer emotional comfort is making it hard for me to develop the warm fuzzies for this kid. Having somebody's face crumple into a perfect picture of emotional agony every time they look over and remember you exist is not boosting my ego.

Any advice for older infants who shove all the things and all the people? Do you take the shoved food away, or is that not appropriate? When you are shoved, do you put them down and walk away? Sit close to them? (This kid hates when I'm sitting close.) Hold them anyway?
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Old 11-15-2019, 08:06 AM
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If I were shoved, I'd walk away. Maybe this kid doesn't like touching. Maybe some sensory processing issues will become apparent later on. Maybe they just only have eyes for mom. It probably has nothing to do with you. I'd try to ignore the behavior. Put the food in front of her if she eats it fine. If not fine. I'd be switching a 13 mo. To a sippy rather than a bottle anyway. She's probably perfectly capable of feeding herself from a cup so let her instead of driving yourself crazy trying to get her to take a bottle. You can still offer a bottle to transition but it doesn't sound worth the effort to me if a cup is an option. Basically, I'd ignore the behavior. Nap issues are a big NOPE for me. I really hate the struggle with disruptive nappers so I don't have many ideas with that. I wish we all had homes big enough to separate each child if needed.... In a perfect world (sigh) hopefully she adjusts. If you can separate her temporarily that'd probably be helpful. Try to teach her that waking and fussing doesn't get her your immediate attention.
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:11 AM
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I think she is just expressing her overall hatred with everything! Ignore would be how I would handle it. No eye contact, shoved food gets taken away, I play fun things by myself and she joins or not. She will warm up but it has to be on her terms and the more you “suck up” or try to please her, which I suspect is what the parents do, the more she will hate it.
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:47 AM
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I to would stop trying to feed her a bottle,cup only.I would put her down and just play next to both babies.Sometimes I think they know we want them to want us.Food offer and just take away when their done.Sleeping wise could you separate them.I also had great luck with using the radio at nap.I picked a soft rock station and it drowned out the other sounds in the house.I would stick it out,tough time to loose both clients and then the one left would have no one to play with.I always found 15 months was a turning point.Good luck happy Friday.
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Old 11-15-2019, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosieteddy View Post
I to would stop trying to feed her a bottle,cup only.I would put her down and just play next to both babies.Sometimes I think they know we want them to want us.Food offer and just take away when their done.Sleeping wise could you separate them.I also had great luck with using the radio at nap.I picked a soft rock station and it drowned out the other sounds in the house.I would stick it out,tough time to loose both clients and then the one left would have no one to play with.I always found 15 months was a turning point.Good luck happy Friday.
Sound machine is my go to! I literally have 3 in my playroom positioned near the screamers/talkers/singers
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Old 11-16-2019, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariana View Post
Sound machine is my go to! I literally have 3 in my playroom positioned near the screamers/talkers/singers
I've wondered if sound machines are worth it. I have fans all over my house for white noise. One in every sleeping area and one in the hall to drown out any cleaning etc I may be doing during nap
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