Best way to drop off at daycare

I take my 15 month to daycare in the morning‘s and find that it’s extremely difficult for me to leave without her crying and clawing at my clothes and reaching out for me, not wanting me to leave her. What are your thoughts or advice on how to leave? I stay a few extra minutes to try and play a little bit but doesn’t help. Best to distract her with something and sneak out when she’s okay? Or have her see that I’m leaving and just tell her bye??

  • Schuyler
    Nov 06

    I’m a nurse so my sweet husband does 90% of pick ups and drop offs. He was having the same problem with our oldest, so he started going into her room with her and having her point out his car from the window. She would watch him leave and it was the transition she needed - no more meltdowns, she would run to the window and see his truck and wave at him and blow kisses when he backed out and left.

  • Amanda
    Nov 06

    Have you tried asked someone to give treats to your little one? With mine, they give some Cheerio when he starts crying. It works a lot... 😎 Sneaking out is gonna make her be more attached to you next time cause she will be wondering when you’ll do the same.

  • Eva
    Nov 06

    I hate to tell you this but there isn’t much you can do except just push through it. I went through this exact same thing when my little one was about your little ones age and let me tell you it was really tough. I’d cry each morning dropping her off. I’d sit in the car feeling like a terrible mother cursing my full time job but it gets better! Hang in there and remember it’s a phase. They will eventually get into the groove of things and have fun with their peers and teachers. I’ve read that it’s better to not drag your time there. Walk them in, verbally tell them they you will see them in a few hours and wave goodbye as you walk out. We did this and of course she would cry watching us thru the window but it gets better.

  • Julie
    Nov 06

    It gets better!!! But do not sneak away. It’s actually worse for her to suddenly realize you’re gone. I have a 15 month old as well and I make drop offs as quick as possible. If there are any issues or concerns I leave a message at the front desk and call later to confirm the message was received. What I do is I walk her in and hold her in my arms, explaining I have to go to work and I will be back at 4:15. I quickly unpack whatever stuff I’ve schlepped in for the day (sippys, blankets, whatever). I hang her coat in the cubby and give her a nice hug and kiss on the cheek and say, “I love you and I’ll see you soon.” Then I hand her to a teacher. If a teacher isn’t available I wait for one to be, I am not comfortable leaving her crying on the floor and I communicated this to them early on and they’re aware and very understanding. Then I make eye contact and say bye one more time and walk out the door. I put my shoes on out of sight of the windows to her room and count to 20. When I peek back in as I leave she’s always fine and playing happily. Never feel bad about calling the front desk 5 minutes later and making them go check in on her. They are almost always fine within a few minutes of you leaving!! It’s tough but you gotta be strong. My daughter has been a lot better recently. Most days she now willingly goes to her teacher and then turns and blows me a kiss. I’d like to say that’s nicer but it also makes me sad. Lol. Good luck!!

  • Debora
    Nov 06

    My husband and I had a hard time also. Some friend suggested us to use a couple of books to help my daughter understand that we will always come back. There is a Llama Llama book called Llama llama misses mama which was so helpful for my daughter. She recognized herself in the same situation, including her daycare friends...

  • Celeste
    Nov 06

    Both my twins go through this and when I drop them off I tell each of them that I understand they don’t want me to leave , but mommy has to go to work and that mommy always comes back and they will have lots of fun with their friends . Then I give them to one of the teachers and leave . I feel extremely bad to but I feel like the lingering makes it worse . And yes they cry for a little but they always end up having a fun day .

  • Shundra
    Nov 06

    As a caregiver working in a daycare I believe the best way to help your child through the anxiety is to actually spend time during drop off in the room. Maybe go play in a area with the child for 5 minutes so that your child can see you interacting with the environment that they will be spending some time in. It helps them with trusting that they are some where safe. Eventually drop offs will be bliss.

  • Erin
    Nov 09

    We developed a "goodbye ritual" . It initially consisted of two high fives and a hug. We practiced at home. After getting settled at day care, I ask if they are ready for high fives. Normally, they are. If they are not, we wait a few minutes and try again. If it goes too long, I say we can either do the high fives, or I can just go. This way, they know I'm leaving, but still retain some control of their lives. It's not always worked perfectly, but it has improved things 80% or more.

  • Claire
    Nov 09

    I definitely think drop off and walk away, giving a firm but loving goodbye, works the best

  • Heidi
    Nov 13

    Either distract her with food or have a teacher occupy her while you leave but don’t sneak out. Just say I love you. I’ll see you later. Have a great day and hand her to her teacher and walk out. Ripping the band aid is harder on us but easier on them. Sticking around usually makes it worse for them. Teachers can usually have a smile back on their face within a min or two. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind sending a picture to you when she’s ok or you could all to check in and make sure she’s better. I tell parents to peek through the crack of the door and see that they are ok. It’s amazing what that little click does. It’s usually all it takes for them to be ok. Most of the kids that have rough drop offs in my class are ok by the time their parents get to their cars at most. It’s really tough leaving them crying though I know from experience. But it will get better with time too! I promise!