Posted September 27, 2010on:
I was talking with a few families recently and our discussion turned to “lovies”. The topic typically surfaces and the questions are always the same….What can you do about children crying for worn blankets or insisting on their ratty little toy to hold on to? When do they grow out of this?
Here are my answers to these questions….
- Respect a lovie and allow children to find security and comfort in a little piece of home. Children in school and child care are in high demand “Group” environments. Groups by definition are “more than one.” They share space, attention and time with other children. While this is fine and a wonderful part of life, children also need personal space and sense of autonomy. Lovies can provide this.
- Lovies are concrete, individualized and cherished bits of security. They are bits of family children can hold on to, they are something that no one else can take from you without your permission, they can be tiny scraps of material or gigantic (an adult’s perspective) stuffed animals.
- Infants are often swaddled in the same blanket which is then used for naps as a toddler. Preschoolers and young school-agers are now attached and intentionally look for that blanket which has provided years of security, comfort and consistency. Changes, stress or illness will often see children reattach to old security systems or hold onto a lovie with focused attention. They are looking for what they know and what they can count on.
Separation usually starts when an older child will keep a lovie in their room or only take it in the car. If you have a school ager that needs their lovie, sew a scrap in their backpack. They will know when enough is enough. When they are ready they will leave their lovie be. It will only show up in family pictures and fond memories.
There is a great picture of a dear friend of mine when he was little. He wore his blanket so thin that his mom made a poncho out of it.
Now that’s my kind of mom.
-Kate Dust, EduKids Education Director