Wednesday, June 26, 2013

For the Love of Babab: My Little Tot's Comfort Object

Oh Hello there!

Does your little one have a comfort object? Mine certainly does and she might be just a little bit obsessed with it.

Comfort objects, according to Nickelodeon Parent Connect, are sometimes called transitional objects, security objects, lovies, blankies or other made-up names. Usually babies between 9 and 12 months choose their comfort objects and once chosen, the object may be a part of the family for years to come.

My little girl's strong attachment to her comfort object began when she was around 7 or 8 months old. I gave her this red pillow to replace her old newborn pillow. And now even if it's old and used (sometimes stinky), she can't sleep without it. She sometimes sucks her thumb and walks around the house with it in tow. And just recently, this clock bag became one of her comfort objects. I think she's drawn to the plush material. She loves rubbing her hands on them and that's what gives her comfort.

According to Nickelodeon Parent Connect, a child's attachment to comfort objects is perfectly normal. It is even healthy and can maintain a feeling of security. Comfort objects help maintain a sense of security which may bolster a child's confidence in new environments.

It didn't really bother me but sometimes I wonder at what will she grow out of it or will it be a problem later on. And here's what I learned from;

Don't worry about your toddler earning his diploma with his teddy in tow. Sometime between ages two and five, most kids are ready to bid bye-bye to their blankie (though they may occasionally cling to it during times of stress). The attachment is rarely abnormal, but do keep an eye out if your tot is always snuggling his T.O. instead of playing with toys, running around outside, or socializing with peers. If so, consider whether there's an underlying cause, such as a stressful situation at home or a problem with a child-care provider.
They also cited a few things on what we (parents) can do about it.
 First, what not to do. Never tease your child about his attachment to a beloved object, and don't insist that he give it up. You can, however, take these steps to make it easier for him to let go when the time is right:

  • Set limits, if possible. Tell your toddler that his teddy can be carried around in the house but not to the playground. Or that it can go in the car but not inside the store. (He may surprise you by actually listening to reason — "Let's keep Teddy at home where he won't get lost or dirty.")
  • Enlist your child's help. Ask him to find a special place in the house where his blanket will be safe while he plays outside. Or suggest he buckle it in the stroller or car seat before he leaves for day care.
  • Schedule laundry visits. Get your child used to having his lovey washed (when he's asleep overnight is a good time). Your nose (and his) will thank you.
  • Buy a duplicate if possible. You can whip out the twin (and head off a meltdown) when the original goes AWOL.
  • Keep his hands busy. He'll have less time to cling to Teddy if he's got interesting things to do, such as crafts, puzzles, and building toys.
  • Crank up the comfort. Make sure you give lots of hugs and reassurance so his T.O. isn't his only source of solace.

Now at least it's comforting to know my little one won't be going to her high school prom with Babab in her purse.

Have you experienced the same with your child? Did you wean him/her off her T.O. ? How did you do it? I'd love to know.

Thanks for dropping by! :)

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