Woobie, Lovie-- whatever you want to call it, my son doesn’t have a transitional object.
Right now, he has not had any need for it, but I’m afraid that one day he suddenly will. When he was very young (2-3 months old), I started to put a frog doll between us when he nursed, but he didn’t seem to be very interested in it. I’m not sure if I should start bringing it into our nursing routine again so that he has something to hold onto.
He has been going to the same daycare since he was 6 weeks old, so he is very comfortable with his caregivers, but he will continue to be exposed to new situations and people and I don’t want to be caught without one when he needs it.
According to Dr. Richard Passman, PhD, of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, up to 60 percent of children in the United States have some sort of security blanket during childhood. Through his research on the effects of security blankets on child development, he has found no negative or lasting effects—but he has found many positive ones.
Sometimes called a "transitional object," a lovey can help ease children into new situations and provide a feeling of familiarity and comfort. This can happen quite organically when a child shows an affinity to a particular object, or it may happen as a result of a mother or father encouraging the attachment.
Some daycare centers may discourage security blankets because of hygiene or other reasons—some say children become very territorial of special blankets or toys, which leads to social problems. Consider encouraging him to use it at nap time only while at daycare and bedtime only while at home. Although, for some parents it may be the only way to coax a stubborn toddler out the door!
As always, when it comes to making decisions about what may be best for your child, use your judgment and follow your instincts.
I have spoken with our daycare facility and they don’t have any problem with Sam bringing in a security blanket or toy. Thank goodness.
Sam is almost a year old right now, should I encourage an attachment to an object or should I see if he is one of the 40+% that doesn’t want one?
What do you think? Does your child have a transitional object? Was it encouraged by you?