Help me help a frustrated 8-month old to communicate better. . .
January 10, 2013 7:45 AM Subscribe
Our daughter is eight-months old. She uses a blood-curdling scream whenever she is frustrated or wants something, which is usually her mom. The screams are so frequent--and so intense--that they have frayed the nerves of everyone else in the house. Any suggestions on how we might help her find a more effective way to express her frustration would be invaluable right now.
posted by ajr to human relations (31 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
She had colic as an infant and it seemed to have resolved itself when she was four or five months old. The screaming, however, returned about six to eight weeks ago.
My wife stays at home with our daughter and has nursed her since she was born. We also have a son, who is almost four-years old, who requires a lot of our attention when he's not in school (which is only on weekday mornings). Regardless, our daughter gets lots of time and attention from us. Over the last few weeks, however, she has increasingly started using this intense scream whenever my wife is not in the same room as her and, often, when she is not holding her and giving her undivided attention. To put it mildly, she is emotionally sensitive.
As soon as she gets picked up, she stops screaming and crying. Clearly, however, she can't be held all day. She's usually OK to play on her own for the first hour or so after sleep, but once she gets a little tired, all bets are off. She's quite verbal and already standing on her own, so I'm having trouble distinguishing between actual distress and her attempts to "manipulate" us to get what she wants. Clearly, we don't want to leave her in distress, but I don't want to create a little Veruca Salt either.
My wife is meeting with one of the social workers/child development specialists at the local parenting center this week, so we've got that angle covered. I figure someone has actually dealt with this though and we need all the help we can get right now.