Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Stranger Danger!

Ava has recently wandered into the not-so-fun territory that is stranger anxiety. In fact, two weeks ago her grandpa came into town to see us and BBQ during the World Cup final match, and she screamed bloody murder anytime he came near her. While part of that was that she was in desperate need of a nap, she still has become extremely wary of strangers.

I know that this is completely normal, and can appreciate that it's healthy for her development (and for later in life) that she recognizes certain people are safe and trustworthy, but is there a way I can ease this? The reason I ask is that in three short weeks we're heading to California so that Ava can finally meet my family (besides my mom, no one on my side has ever seen her!), and I'm worried how the already potentially stressful trip will go if she freaks around strangers.

Any tips/advice? Anyone else going through this??

5 comments:

  1. We're going through this as well. The best thing I've come up with is to sit next to the new person while she plays a little bit... once she wants to come and see me (usually after like 30 seconds, she's a Momma's girl!) I'll pick her up and put her on my lap. Eventually she will warm up to the new person and everything is fine. I've found that if they get too close before she's ready, she'll flip out and be weary of that person for longer periods than if she's slowly introduced. I think it helps when I'm more confident about it too... she can sense if I'm nervous about whether she'll cry or not. If I'm happy and act like nothing is different, she's less likely to pitch a fit when a new person is around :)

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  2. I have yet to experience this with Jack. I actually wish he would be a little more wary of strangers. He lets anyone who wants to hold him. One time we were at a cook-out where he knew no one. Someone was holding him while I went and got some food (and was out of eye sight) and he did perfectly fine! Lately I've noticed him looking for me more and reaching for me, but this is mostly when he's tired. I think it helps if you are not nervous and you show Ava that the person is acceptable. Slowly introduce her to new people. It might be tough when she'll be meeting so many new people at once, but hopefully she'll soon realize that they are nothing to worry about! Jack hasn't met anyone from my family either (well accept for my mom, dad, and grandma) and I know it'll be crazy when we finally go visit. I have a HUGE family. That's exciting that you're going to CA and get to see your family. I hope Ava does well and you all have a great time!

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  3. As far as D goes- I am a big believer in baptism by fire. Toss him into the mix and let him figure it out. He's a big boy.

    James started stranger fear about the same age. Honestly, there isn't much you can do. Go slowly, let her set the pace. She will grow out of it on her own. As far as next week, let her be comfortable. Don't force anyone on her. She may surprise you after a bit of taking it all in.

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  4. I have noticed this a little bit with B.... but nothing too bad yet. He usually doesn't freak out so much, but he stares!!! Like "who the heck are you?" haha. Good luck and have fun in Cali!

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