I have a 18 month old daughter, I have been going to work full time since she was around 15 months old. I leave her with my mom (she is very familiar and comfortable with my mom) but I can’t fight the feeling of guilt. I feel that I am abandoning her and I am not giving her the attention she needs at this time in her life. However, I spend all the time I can with her when I am home and I try to give her all my attention, but I still feel horrible. My question is, will this separation affect her in anyway? Thanks.
No, it will not. Go easy on yourself as you are doing what you need to do and your mom has stepped in for the daytime care. She will still learn her words from both of you if you read to her. She will still learn her skills from both adults. Most of us don't have functional memory before age 3-4 years old. It is unlikely she will remember this time and her needs are met--eg food, naps, attention. That is really all toddlers want. Be a team with your mom and/or partner and don't try to "star" on the weekends. It can be confusing.
Wayne Yankus, MD, FAAP
expert panelist: pediatrics