Did I contribute?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Sep 24, 2008.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    A comment was made this past weekend and I'd like your opinion.

    Wee difficult child clings to me at times. For example, at home, he wil literally hang on me. Or if I'm working on the computer, he will play literally inches from my work. Regardless of how much attention I give him, it is never enough.

    This weekend, we had the buggy out and went for a long ride. We had 5 people in the buggy, which is about the equivilant of having 5 people in a Honda Accord. Not real roomy. WeeGgg was cold and getting tired and wanted to lay down on the seat between husband and I, but that was not an option.

    I asked difficult child if he wanted to sit on my lap and he said yes, and did.

    I rider made a comment about me offering to let him sit on my lap and that it contributes to difficult child clinging on me, which I later complain about. And it just got me wondering...I do complain about difficult child hanging on me at times (it gets old) does me asking him to sit on my lap in cramped conditions contribute to that?
  2. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Gosh, I don't know. I was kind of the other way ... I have a bad back and regret all the times I didn't pick up my son. He was just as clingy as your wee difficult child and would scream holy h*ll if I didn't pick him up. I'd have to sit on the floor and hold him in my lap instead of picking him up.

    I'm sure you'll get some advice from others here. Wish I could help more.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well...I can see this both ways. However I think the over-riding factor in this particular situation is twofold. difficult child's age and the conditions that nite. The kid is only 6...he isnt 12. 6 year olds do sit on moms laps, especially when cold and tired. He had asked to lie down but there was no room in a small cramped place. If you had been in a nice roomy van it would have been different and he could have stretched out someplace else.

    I think it would have been far different if you were all sitting in a 37 foot RV and he demanded to be held for 8 hours instead of going to bed.
  4. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    This wasn't a clingy action. This was a tired kid action. Huge difference. Maybe the next time offer to let her hold him? At least then she can't blame you.
  5. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member


    I just want to throw out another thing to think about...I suspect that Wee difficult child clings to you because it gives him a feeling of safety and stability with all the chaos that he has to deal with from inside himself. You're his rock in the raging river.

    That said, I know that it can get old to have a 6 yr old hanging off you all the time.

    Now in the context of the buggy ride, I agree with Meowbunny. That was tired little boy behaviour, not clingy behaviour.

    As for your friend's comment, I think it was a little out of line. Sometimes our little guys need to be held. Some really need to be held. A lot. (For about the first 12 or 13 years of his life, my difficult child clung to husband like a limpet. The only time he let go was when he was asleep or husband physically wasn't there.) Some kids just need that much contact to stay regulated.
  6. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Interesting. I wonder what your friend would make of difficult child 1 at that age?

    difficult child 1 was VERY clingy with me. Not too bad at home although he would still love a cuddle. easy child 2/difficult child 2 was also always very snuggly.

    But in public, say at church or at a concert or anywhere like that, difficult child 1 would crawl onto my lap and sit there, snuggling in. I remember often someone would come up to me after church and ask if difficult child 1 was ill, he had been sitting in the same position on my lap for the entire service.

    Some of this is probably normal. Some of it could be anxiety, or Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), or BiPolar (BP) or a lot of things. But he IS only 6.

    But then - what do I know, about what is normal?

  7. house of cards

    house of cards New Member

    I think you did what any parent would do in the situation. I do think it was more tired then clingy but even if it was, does your friend think pushing your child away would make them less clingy?
  8. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Thank you all.
    I could see a difference between then two, but then again, I'm sure I do things that I can do better to improve some of difficult child's behaviors, so I do tend to take comments like these to heart. Just needed some outside eyes to verify that we really were talking 2 different types of things here.
    Ironically, the person who made that comment has a twelve year old who still crawls in their lap. One without any sort of problems.

    Trinity - difficult child actually verbalizes this from time to time. He will say he wants mommy because mommy loves him and keeps him safe, and I guess I do tend to beleive what you're saying is right with him. difficult child had no connection to anyone until I started implementing Explosive Child concepts, and shortly thereafter, he attached himself to me - not so much in an emotional sense as in a survival sense. It always felt like he clung to me because I was the one that he could understand. Its never been a "mommy's little boy" type of relationship with him.
    And Marg, I so relate! What the heck IS normal? I wouldn't know it if it smacked me upside the head anymore.
    Anyway, thank you all.
  9. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    You may have contributed to this after all, in a way. You're implementing "Explosive Child" techniques and probably the only one who IS. Therefore, he is learning that you are his facilitator, your task is to help him. Other people - he's not so sure, especially if their responses to him are more typical of what we grew up recognising as acceptable adult-child interactions.

    I did find that difficult child 3 would see k me out more, as someone who seemed to 'get' him better, someone he could count on to help him and not make him feel more frustrated.

    If this is what is happening - then embrace it. It is good.

    Anyone making you feel insecure about your parenting like this, especially if their own situation could be more questionable - I wonder about her motives. Is she just trying to point the finger elsewhere so people won't say to her, "Do something about your own over-clingy child!"?

  10. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Shari, in my humble opinion, the fact that difficult child recognizes you as the safety net and stability is a good thing for him. Our boys have so much chaos in their minds that they cling to their rock. You. It's a good thing for him.

    If it's any consolation, my baby sis sits closer to me depending on her level of stress. I used to tease her that eventually she would end up in my lap. She was 22yrs old. Today, she is an independent, 40 yr old mom of 2. If she lived nearby I'm sure she would cozy up to me on the couch if she was worried.

    I think you are giving your son a gift. I also think clingy is different than needing some mothering or nurturing. It's probably a matter on whose terms the attention is given or demanded.

    Asking yourself these self reflection type questions is what keeps us constantly learning and altering the plans depending on the needs of the difficult child or the family. Good for you.