Tips for Parents When Saying Goodbye

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Hard To Say Goodbye

For parents and the child, beginning child care can be both an exciting and emotional time. It is therefore important that a childminder provides helpful and effective tips to make the experience less emotionally stressful. There have been a lot of teary-eyed goodbyes when parents have to leave to go to work and need to send their child behind with a babysitter. This can be a very painful experience especially if it is the first time that the parents and the child are separated from each other. In order to make goodbye less heart-wrenching, often parents try sneaking out while their child is not looking, or busy playing with other children. This is absolutely not recommended because it can impact the development of the child. At the same time, the child will think that the parents abandoned him or her. The child will also think that his or her parents used deception. While the child is still settling-in, it is always best to encourage parents to say goodbye short and simple. It does not have to be grand, long and dramatic. As a matter of fact, it should not be long so not to give a painful separation a chance.

In the early stages of the placement, a childminder should provide parents a routine to follow when saying goodbye. These tips are helpful to both child carer and parents. Let us take a closer look at this practical sequence of actions that are meant to be followed regularly:

  • The arrival of parents and the child

  • Warmly welcome the parents and the child

  • If the child is older, be ready with an appropriate activity and tell the child about it

  • Encourage the child to kiss goodbye to his or her parents

  • Encourage the parents that they are leaving and will be back at (be specific with the time)

  • Do not interrupt the parents and the child when they are saying goodbye. Allow them to do it on their own way

  • The parents leave

  • Talk to the child right away about the activity you tell him or her

  • If the child is still very young, allow the baby to see them leave and encourage the parents to say goodbye

Transitioning into a new child care setting, encourage the parents that they need to make sure that they have extra time at drop off. It is advisable that they do the morning drop offs especially if the child is not accustomed to the new routine. This will definitely help the child settle-in and be at ease with the new environment. This will also help the parents establish the need to create a goodbye routine.

Whether parents like or not, you should encourage them to always say goodbye. This can be a daunting task especially if parents know that their child will start crying if they say goodbye and prefer to leave the setting when they see their child is not looking or the child is already engrossed with the activity he or she is doing. It is important to establish trust. A childminder should encourage parents to build trust with their child when saying goodbye. It is not good that the child does not know that his or her parents have already left the room. Give the child the opportunity to know that his or her parents are going. It is the child’s right to know it. However, as a childminder, encourage the parents to be kind and direct. Let the parents say to their child why they have to leave. This is teaching the child the importance of honesty. In addition, the child will also think that it is important and has to be done. Let the child feel that the parents will be back to pick him or her up before, say, lunch, or snack time or dinner.

When saying goodbye, an open communication plays a very important role as it helps build a trusting relationship between the parents and the child, as well as the childminder and the child. The child will understand that their parents have left leave him or her to a new carer whom they find to be trustworthy.

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