Parenting Guide

Parenting Guide

Making Bye-Bye Better

A Routine for Separations

“Goodbyes are not forever. Goodbyes are not the end. They simply mean I’ll miss you until we meet again.”


  • Goodbyes Can Be Difficult for You Both!

    You have probably experienced the clinging, clutching, and crying that often accompany a goodbye. Babies, and sometimes even toddlers, don’t make it easy for you to leave—even for a quick run to the store. Being upset when you’re not with them is perfectly normal, and can start at any time during the first three years.…

  • Separation Anxiety is Normal

    Initially, you’re the center of your child’s universe. Your newborn is totally dependent on you, and imagines that you are an extension of her. At around four months old, your child begins to realize that you are separate from her. This new awareness makes it difficult for her to understand that you still exist whenever…

  • Saying Goodbye Helps Your Child

    You may be tempted to sneak out and avoid a scene, but that only tends to make your child more anxious. You can ease separations that are painful for both of you by establishing a consistent way to say goodbye, much as you might have already done to ease the stress of bedtime. The repetition…

  • Using Transitional Objects to Stay Connected

    Like Charlie Brown’s best friend Linus and his blue security blanket, children often find comfort in the familiar, soft touch of a lovie or cuddly toy. These items are called transitional objects. People of all ages use transitional objects, ranging from students taking their stuffed animal to college to adults with heirlooms that have special…

  • Create Your Bye-Bye Routine Using the CuddleBright® Experience

    • Designate a special place in your house, like your child’s room, where you can focus on each other for a few minutes before you say goodbye. • Give your child a heads-up. Sit at eye level, look into her eyes, and calmly tell her, “Mommy will be leaving in five minutes.” (Hold up five…

  • Resources for Further Reading

    Bowlby, J. (1969). Attachment and loss: Volume 1. New York, NY: Basic Books. Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University. (n.d.). Key concepts: Brain architecture. Retrieved from Kaplan, L.J. (1978). Oneness and separateness: From infant to individual. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster. Kopp, C. B. (1982, March). Antecedents of self-regulation: A developmental…

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