Changing maids often can affect your children's well-being
Children do mourn the loss of their caregivers
It is a common thing to see families changing maid in Singapore, and quite frequently too if I might add. Oftentimes when we meet up with old family friends, it is not surprising to see the comings and goings of these helper cum nannies.
It is also very rare these days to hear of a child who has only one helper for his or her entire childhood. Many children go through a series of helpers, nannies and maids throughout their childhood.
Changing Maid in Singapore
Sometimes changing maid in Singapore is unavoidable. There are a lot of reasons and contributing factors to this, both on the side of the maid and the family employing her.
Domestic helpers and maids may want to leave for various reasons: It could be the demanding workload, a case of homesickness, miscommunication or even bad employers. Likewise, for the family, they could choose to change maid because of a perceived mismatch, broken trust or even just getting a bad maid!
But how this affects your children depends on the extent of the responsibility of the maid caring for your children at home.
If a maid is with your children all day, feeding, bathing and dressing them, then naturally they will form an attachment to her. Not only is she the primary caregiver when you are not around, she is also the one they will look to for protection and for their basic needs.
However, these kinds of attachments do not last. Compared to family members who remain a stable presence as the child is growing up, a maid or helper might only stay for a few years at most and the cycle begins anew.
How This Can Affect Our Children
For families, changing maid in Singapore might feel like it is nothing because to them a helper is just someone who is paid to run errands and do chores.
But this is not how your children view the person who takes care of them day in and day out. To them, your maid is someone they feel safe with and someone who they can depend on to take care of them. And the younger your children are, the more dependent they will be on your maid.
While it might be easy for parents to shrug it off as unimportant, changing maids does affect a child psychologically and emotionally.
When your maid or helper leaves, your child’s sense of security and safety leaves with her. Plenty of parents do not recognise this, resulting in many children suffering from attachment loss quietly. It is true that children will adapt over a period of time especially if this change is constantly repeated. Still, we shouldn’t disregard our children’s feelings.
If your children are old enough, sit them down and have a talk with them. Help them understand the feelings they are going through. Let them know that it is completely normal and that the feeling will pass. Explain why your helper or maid has to leave and why it is unavoidable.
They will feel heartbroken and empty for a while. So make sure YOU are there to fill it in with lots of hugs and kisses and quality bonding time.
Oftentimes parents are more concerned with finding a replacement that they forget about their children’s emotional loss. Even though research shows that parents shouldn’t let their own emotions interfere, expressing empathy can help your children get through this difficult time.
Understandably there are many valid reasons for changing maid in Singapore, but it is important for parents to take into consideration the bond and attachment formed, for the well-being of their children.