That time when your maternity leave ends and you need to get back to work is indeed a hard time for both the mother and the child. Many parents decide to hire a babysitter to look after their little one while they’re at the office. While it’s a hard decision, many don’t have a choice.

To ease your worries, here are some tips to follow for leaving your child with a babysitter for the first time (and to ease separation anxiety, too!)

Prepare your babysitter

You know your child more than anyone – his daily routine, his favorite toys and TV shows, what he likes and dislikes as well as what frustrates and comforts him. It is important that your sitter knows all these crucial things. It’s also important that you have everything your baby may need is organized and easy to reach. His snacks, formula, favorite toys and books etc.

You don’t want to be constantly disturbed at work because your sitter keeps calling about where’s this and that. This doesn’t make for an ideal first time situation for everyone.

Ease into it

Babies are not good with changes in their routine, especially a drastic one. The best way to help your child adapt to the situation is by giving him time to get used to the new person in his life – his sitter. Have the sitter visit for an hour or two for several days before the big day just playing with and getting to know your child.

This also helps the sitter get familiar with his/her new work environment.

Take time to “transfer your baby”

When the big day comes, experts recommend against handing your baby to the sitter right away as this would induce separation anxiety. An ideal way to do it is in a neutral place like when your child is sitting on the floor playing or eating on his high chair.

Have your sitter engage your baby and when they’re busy, give your baby a quick kiss and a cheerful goodbye. Once your gone, the babysitter should pick up your baby which makes him/her the “rescuer” which will begin their interaction on a positive note.

The experience of leaving your baby with a babysitter for the first tine can be a pleasant one for both you and your baby if you approach it the right way. Follow the tips above and it will be!