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  1. #1
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    Complete change in demeanor for 2 year old dcb - What to do?

    Hello everyone.
    I have had a 2 year old dcb in my care for a year now. He has certainly come a long way this past year, shares, loves to read and learned so many new things and words. His mom is always saying how much he has learned with me.
    However, his behaviour the past week or two has me questioning if I should keep him on.
    He has been crying and clinging to dad at drop off each morning for almost 2 weeks. Previously he would walk right in to my house and barely even acknowledge dad - he was ready for the day! Now he arrives cringing, and after dad leaves, no matter what I try to distract him he stand there and looks like a sad puppy sucking his thumb, puppy dog eyes. He just literally stands there. I try and try to distract and engage him but he will usually start walking towards the bedroom area where his playpen is. The other kiddos can see that he is upset and will walk over and hand him toys, pat his back etc - its really cute actually seeing a bunch of almost 2 year olds be so empathetic with him. I end up putting him back in his playpen and bring him back up again after an hour. Same thing again most of the time. Its so frustrating. He is becoming a disruption to my attempts to do crafts, circle time etc.
    He also is barely eating. Snacks or lunch. He will literally just sit there in his highchair sucking his thumb or covering his face in his hands and not touching his food.
    I have spoken to Mom, texted her photos of him thoughout the day and we chat almost every day at pickup. Both of us have no idea what has gotten into him. Nothing has changed here at daycare, routine wise, no one new. Same at home, hes on the same sleep schedule and routine at home.
    I am less than 3 weeks away from my due date so things here have been very laid back as well the weather is not helping with us having to stay indoors quite a bit.
    I am truly at a loss. I don't know what to with this little guy. I am not minding him wanting to go back to the playpen so much right now, but after this baby is born and the weather is nicer we will be spending as much time as possible outdoors and I cant' accomodate him wanting to stay in his playpen all day.
    Any suggestions??? Thoughts??? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    He's maybe entering his version of terrible two's. Kids go through these clingy weird stages. I've had it happen lots of times for no reason. He should come out of it eventually. I wouldn't let him stay in his playpen all day though. it seems really counter-productive. just keep doing what your doing. if he gets in a mood, ignore him. it he gets disruptive, give him a time out.

    I wouldnt read too much into it. kids can be fickle at times

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  4. #3
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    I think that something has changed at home even if mum says not. Any time this has happened to me something has changed and I have heard the same thing from many many providers. Perhaps it is just that mum doesn't think that anything is significant enough to warrant this change or isn't comfortable discussing the specifics with you. Parents arguing for example can quite often effect the child and a lot of people may not want to share that with you thinking it is unrelated when it is huge, even a couple of odd nights late to bed that isn't every night so doesn't seem like a big deal to the parents could be enough to send the child off a bit.

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  6. #4
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    Thanks. That is what I figured - terrible twos'. I just feel bad for him because all he wants to do is go back to his playpen. I feel like I am letting him down somehow?
    I really hope that he snaps out of this soon because it is affecting the activities for the other little ones they really are noticing his change in behaviour. If it continues it will be something that may be cause for terminating.

  7. #5
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    If he doesn't snap out of it, I would readdress the issue with mum and clarify no changes at home. Maybe explain that you don't mean to pry but something at home may be the cause of this attitude change and it may be helpful for you to know. You could give her some gentle suggestions of what it could be while giving positive reinforcement to the parent that you have the best of intentions and want to do what you can for the child and the family. She may respect this approach and open up to you if there is in fact something going on.

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  9. #6
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    I agree, it could be something at home, it could be terrible two's or maybe he is coming down with something and it's affecting his sleep, eating and attitude. I can tell weeks before my kids get sick because they are all out of sorts. Talk to mom and keep an good eye on him. He might get passed it.

  10. #7
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    Could Mom be pregnant? I have seen this happen many times, the child usually senses the pregnancy very early on and their behaviour will often change.

  11. #8
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    I think we are also missing a big thing here. Sassygirl, you are pregnant and due soon. This is a big change as well and I don't know about your plans once the baby is born but if you are closing for some time there is probably some talk about these changes, where he will be going etc. I would hazzard a guess that a provider having a child in home daycare can be akin to their own parent having a child as they spend so much time with us and we often don't leave on a mat leave.

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  13. #9
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    Torontokids you may be onto something!
    He is the only one out of my crew - 4 toddlers ages 18month to 2ish including my own 23 month old who has not aknowledged my pregnancy at all! All the others, boys and girls, are all over my belly "baby baby" carrying around the baby dolls, etc. He hasn't made any reference to it at all and hes' the oldest one here.
    Hmmm he may be sensing that babys arrival is fast approaching. He also has NOT done well whenever I have had a newbie start since he's been with me the longest.

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