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I was wondering if anxiety could effect my child?

I suffer with anxiety and during pregnancy it was quite bad and after birth up until 6months ago when i gained some control. My son is now 18 months. He has always been clingy with me, not wanting to go to anyone else, not letting me put him down, If I tried he would cry and could keep crying for over an hour, the only way he would stop is when I hold him.

He isn't as bad now, in that he will play and mix with other children,  but is conscious of adults, will cry if he doesn't like the look of someone, holds back if an adult is between him and what he wants to do etc. Still prefers me and stops instantly when I hold him, takes a little longer if my husband tries. I'm his main comforter. I have succeeded in getting him into a playgroup once a week, so he is on his own. He seems okay, plays nicely and will allow his teacher to speak to him, but no one else. He then cries when I go to pick him up and I can't put him down for hours later. He doesn't just cry, sometimes he looks like he is panicking, I recognise it from myself when iv had a panic attack.

I know toddlers are prone to separation anxiety and most kids go through some kind and at some point, but my son seems to have been since birth, so I wondered could it be inherited or learnt behaviour?!

2 Replies

hiya, I also suffered with anxiety whilst pregnant and still do now whilst breastfeeding. My daughter has gone through periods of separation anxiety but it comes and goes. I don't think your little boy's clinginess is because he has been affected in the womb - IF your anxiety has affected him, this would be more likely him picking up on you being anxious about putting him down in case he cries. But this is something most of us mums feel. Sounds like you are doing your absolute best for him, don't worry. He will grow out of this with love and encouragement and the gentle approach that you are taking seems the best way to get him used to the world away from you. You know his needs best. Keep taking little steps to build his confidence. xxx


Thankyou for replying, as a parent I think your always second guessing yourself wondering if your doing the right thing, is it my fault, could I have done things differently. Etc.

It's conforming to know I'm not alone and I truly appreciate your understanding.


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