Is this normal? A sign of abuse? What do I do?

Discussion in 'Baby Club' started by hopeful4bfp, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. hopeful4bfp

    hopeful4bfp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Messages:
    652
    Likes Received:
    0
    My daughter is usually a happy, friendly, smiley baby. She has started getting some stranger anxiety, where when strangers talk to her she hides her face but then smiles at them while her head is on my shoulder. She also will only let me or FOB really hold her (though that may have more to do with teething at the moment). What I am worried about it that she is easily startled and frightened. If there is a loud noise or if something pops out unexpectedly, she jumps. If we are in the living room and someone comes through the door, she freaks out and tries to climb me in order to 'get away' from who ever is coming through.

    Today, she was playing in the living room, across the room from me, our roommate came out of his room and I was trying to get Noiee to say hi to him as she usually loves him and is always happy to see him. All she would do is look at me and smile as she must not of heard his door open. He finally said something and the look of panic on her face was heartbreaking when she realized there was someone in the house and she was so far from me. She tried to take off crawling toward me but couldn't get to me fast enough (in her opinion) and finally gave up and sobbed on the floor (this all took place in less than 30 seconds). When I scooped her up and she looked at who it was that talked she was all smiles and bouncy happy to see him like usual.

    I just don't understand why she is afraid of other people. How does she know to be afraid? Is this a sign of abuse? Should I be looking at her childcare worker or something? She never had any bruises or marks, and she always seems happy to go, never crying or anything. How does a 7 month old know to be afraid of someone coming through the door or afraid of someone that she cant see and didn't realize was there?

    I would really appreciate some advice or insights.
     
  2. SarahP13

    SarahP13 Mummy to a princess :-)

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2010
    Messages:
    898
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh the poor little tyke!

    I really do not know too much about the signs of abuse so don't want to mislead you in any way, however if my daughter did the same as yours I don't think it is a conclusion I would leap to.

    I also believe that around seven months, babies often go through a clingy phase. DD2 hasn't really done it but I distinctly remember DD1 going through a very clingy phase around 7 months. She didn't even like Daddy taking her away from me and she was a proper daddy's girl. Even now she, aged two, she freaks if she is close to the phone when it rings or the doorbell and comes running to me. Although she is, in general, a tough little thing.

    I'm not sure I've been any help but I guess I'm saying don't worry but maybe keep an eye on things. :flower:
     
  3. iluvmyfamily

    iluvmyfamily mom to 5 babies 1 angel

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2012
    Messages:
    4,246
    Likes Received:
    0
    I read your thread and gave myself some time to reply because I wanted to make sure I was reading everything right. It's hard to say if she's being abused. I know my son is very, very close to me and there was a period of time where he would cry when people would go near him and he would run to me because he only wanted me. I think he even did this with his dad, where he would run from him and come straight to me. Is your daughter choosing you more than she's choosing her dad? Or is it equal, just so that she's away from someone else? It's possible she has separation anxiety disorder and she's only happy and content when she's in your arms or your DH's arms. It seems as though she feels safer with you two than she would with anyone else. That's why she'll look at the other person in the room and smile but from a distance. She's only 7 months so it could really just be a phase that she's going through. It doesn't necessarily point to abuse of any kind but I do think if you're concerned you should talk to her pediatrician. I knew this couple who were very odd and they had two kids, a boy and a girl. The guy's sister had told me that anytime he's about to change his own daughter's diaper she would panic and cry hysterically. No one knows for sure if he abused his daughter but there were rumors of him raping a girl in the past and actually trying some things on his other sister when they were younger (she was 12 and he was 18, so he knew right from wrong!). Anyway, my point is, usually when a child is sexually abused they show signs of it during diaper changes and bath time. I don't find it to be 100% true though because if a child is very young how will they know what's happening to them is wrong to the point they'd cringe when someone is changing/cleaning them? In my honest opinion, it's hard to tell when a child is being physically and/or sexually abused so your best bet would be taking the child to the doctor to be checked. If you suspect it's happening at childcare I would refrain from letting her go for a while until you get to the bottom of it. It very well could be nothing more than just a little separation anxiety disorder, which is what we would all pray for instead of it being something worse. Please let us know how you get on and just keep an eye out for other signs she may exhibit. I do think it's nothing though, but to ease your mind, it's best for her to be seen. Good luck to you!
     
  4. hopeful4bfp

    hopeful4bfp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Messages:
    652
    Likes Received:
    0
    she is fine when she is with me or daddy, more so with me when she is teething. It just seems she is so fearful when she doesnt know what or who is on the other side of the door or who the unexpected voice came from. It could just be a phase and I hope so, but I just wanted others opinion.

    ETA: I also wanted to say I dont suspect sexual abuse at all. there has never been any changes in her genitalia, no redness or bleeding or anything. not even diaper rash ever.
     
  5. amjon

    amjon Guest

    One of ours will scream at unexpected noise. DH burped next to him the other day and started him off. I think it's normal for them to get scared at things they don't expect. Ours are always with us so we know what is always going on with them (except the rare times we leave them with family).
     
  6. staralfur

    staralfur Love my girlie!

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2011
    Messages:
    8,362
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think that sounds pretty normal. Babies and toddlers go through phases of separation and stranger anxiety (not necessarily just strangers, basically anyone other than mom or dad).
     
  7. medic76097

    medic76097 Baby #3 on the way!

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2012
    Messages:
    1,068
    Likes Received:
    1
    I cant really say for certain with your little one, but I can tell you that everything you have described is exactly whats going on with out little guy.
    I think its more the age that they are. My little one is 10 months now and he knows a new face right away. He seeks comfort from a number of family since he sees them everyday (like myself, hubby, his unlce that lives with us, grandparents) but still plays shy with my sister, who he sees about once a week or so. I don't think its an abuse issue. I think its more separation anxiety. There are some new situations where my son gets unsure of himself and he gets clingy. If he hurts himself and gets too upset about it, he doesn't seem to get the comfort he needs from anyone but me. Maybe research it a bit and see... but I would say that abuse would be low on the list of things to look at as long as you don't have anyone around baby that you would suspect of hainvg the opportunity to abuse baby
     
  8. FAB mama

    FAB mama Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2013
    Messages:
    2,262
    Likes Received:
    0
    To me it sounds pretty normal, but if you are concerned then keep watching for signs of abuse. I can tell you that I am with my son 99% of the time and yet, a few weeks ago he was playing with my mom and I walked into the room and said something (he didn't see me come in) and he JUMPED and crawled into her arms. And that was MY voice! Sometimes he just gets startled easily. He also hides his face in my shoulder most of the time when around strangers. The stranger anxiety is normal, and expected at this age according to my pediatrician. At our 9 month check, he marked that like it was a good thing.
     
  9. hopeful4bfp

    hopeful4bfp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Messages:
    652
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks Ladies.. I am feeling more reassured, it sounds like it is normal and just a phase. My mom mentioned something about it and asked if me and FOB yell a lot around her but we dont fight in front of her. So it just got me thinking especially after the melt down this morning if it was something else.
     
  10. Duejan2012

    Duejan2012 mommy of dd, ds, & preggo

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Messages:
    4,105
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with everyone else. My Los doc warned us that from about 6 months to 10 or so they will have alot of stranger enxiety (SP?) And sure enough they do theyonly want you. My ds even started crying with his grandparents during this time. Its a phase i think and it will pass. I dont think it would be abuse as she would be crying everytime she went to daycare and such. xx
     
  11. Mrs Mc

    Mrs Mc Mummy of 2 and pregnant

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    Messages:
    957
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sounds totally normal behaviour to me.

    Our twins are very shy around strangers. One of them cried in the supermarket today when a man smiled and waved at her :dohh:

    They know my parents very well, only as they see them much more than OH parents, but around other family they will only stay with me and OH for the first half hour or so until they're comfortable.

    We had a guy round to do a quote for some work were planning the other day and they cried when he came in the room.

    O and one cried hysterically when OH sneezed the other night and gave her a fright :rofl:
     
  12. New Mrs W

    New Mrs W Frankie and Mickey's Mama

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    Messages:
    2,837
    Likes Received:
    1
    I think it sounds like completely normal behaviour. I read somewhere that at about 7 months old babies begin to realise that you and him/her are separate entities and are not always together and of course thats scares them so they want to be with you as much as possible. The jumpiness sounds normal too, I would shit myself if I was in a room with just one other person and suddenly a voice came from seemingly no where. I don't find any of what you've described as odd at all. I think that if someone else described this behaviour to you about their child then you wouldn't be concerned. We are designed to worry about our own children and because it is a change in her behaviour you are immediately concerned. It shiws that you are a good mama xx
     
  13. GracieGoo

    GracieGoo Mammy to 2 beauts! xx

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,940
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with everyone else, I wouldnt put this together with abuse tbh. Babis go through serious changes from one min to the next, and seperation anxiety is a normal problem throughout childhood. Do you have any other concerns abuout your childcare provider - or is this it? Hope that all the responses have eased your mind a bit x
     
  14. lanaross

    lanaross Mom to Bella and Greyson

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    Messages:
    4,266
    Likes Received:
    0
    my daughter still does this and she's 3,5. It's her personality trait, she needs to warm up, get to know a person better and then she'll be fine but she definitely has the stranger=danger issues.
     
  15. hopeful4bfp

    hopeful4bfp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Messages:
    652
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was worried for a minute about her daycare. When I picked her up a few times she was visibly upset and was obviously left to cry for a minute or two and then she came home with some bruising on her forehead. The daycare worker said she fell on some toys (and I believed her as she was just learning to pull to stand and thought it was fun to let go and then she would fall) We had a talk and I asked a lot of questions and talked about things i dont like and nothing like that has happened again but I just wanted to make sure I want missing something in her behavior.
     
  16. Zephram

    Zephram Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2012
    Messages:
    3,489
    Likes Received:
    1
    There is nothing in your description of her behaviour that would cause me any concern. Stranger anxiety and separation anxiety are normal behaviours that babies go through. It can happen even with people they know that aren't mum or dad, it's also normal for them to behave with trepidation when they can hear someone coming or hear strange noises. It's just an increasing awareness of the world. My LO has behaved this way from time to time over the last few months and still crawls over to me and clings when someone comes over, even if he knows them. He warms up quickly enough though!
     
  17. television

    television Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2011
    Messages:
    872
    Likes Received:
    0
    My dd is going through exactly the same thing,it makes me worry that someone has scared her but i think its quite normal. My ds came in yesterday from being at his dads hes 7 so quite loud also he had his face painted and she went mad she was so upset. He wiped his face and she was fine. very strange.
     
  18. WANBMUM

    WANBMUM I am a mama

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,037
    Likes Received:
    1
    your poor little pet. Another option is 'hearing'. A faze where it becomes really good, alot better than b4, so sounds they were used to suddenly sounds REALLY loud and different to their norm. All normal developmentally.
    For your own peace of mind, monitor your daughter especially ay daycare drop off, see if her reaction has changed of late.
     
  19. ShelbyLC

    ShelbyLC Twin girls & baby boy!

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    2,682
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sounds normal to me. My girls went through a phase like this. :thumbup:
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice