To want to put my baby down?(25 Posts)
My six month old boy is extremely clingy. He wants to be held all the time. He can crawl and sit up but he’s rather be held in my arms than do anything. If I try to put him down or in a bouncer he screams until I pick him back up. He’s my second baby and my first son is at home with us and wants my attention, too. What do I do? My first was nowhere near this clingy and I feel guilty for not just enjoying the constant cuddles, but I need to shower and get dressed and do housework! Help!
Thank God... I thought you meant like a pet 😂 I was thinking that was a bit extreme!
Is he being clingy for a reason? Is he hurting with teething or anything?
If not then simply don’t pick him up a lot for a few days. My son used to be soooo clingy so I made sure he was near me and I’d chat happily to him but I didn’t pick him up unless it was absolutely necessary. After about a week he realised I wasn’t going anywhere and he didn’t need to cling to me for comfort and learnt to be comforted just being around me rather than physically on me
Invest in a sling!! Several! Get baby bouncers for every room so you can take little one with you no matter what you are doing. My little one was sooooooooooo clingy and I choose to embrace this, hardly ever putting her down until she was ready. I found once she was more mobile (crawling and walking etc), she became more independent. I would say it is ok hold your child as much as your child wants you to, you can't spoil them and you do in time figure out ways of doing things. It gets easier. I have a nine year old - I promise you won't be holding them forever smile.
I thought you meant like a pet too. We had to have our cat put down a couple of weeks ago, that was traumatic enough, wouldn't want to do it to a baby!
Could you just sit on the floor with him and encourage him to play? Then gradually start to get up and do little bits at a time for longer periods? Playpen? Jumperoo?
Slings are great. I also used this for my DS though. You strap it round your waist and the baby sits on the seat. You use one arm to hold him and then have a free arm. Not for use really when out and about but good round the house. I used to manage to do housework with this and a sling. Having a shower I would put him in a bumbo seat (when older), bouncer when little - in the bathroom so I could talk to him.
Babies do have needs, but so do mothers and other children as well.
Most babies would rather be held than put down, its perfectly fine to put him down whilst you do something else, you are not going to give him physiological problems by letting him get used to sitting near you for a bit.
Have you tried heuristic play or what they used to call on MN a "wnaky box"?
You basically get a small box or basket, a shoebox is about the right size, and into it you put household items that he's not normally allowed access to but which are safe. Things like a wooden spoon, a hairbrush, a large stone, a piece of cloth, old TV remote with batteries removed, a toothbrush, just lots of different textures and things to explore. If you're in the room you can also put things in which might potentially be dangerous but are OK if you're watching, like paper/foil etc.
Because it's all new stuff it can occupy them for a bit longer and you put different things in it every time.
I hated slings, hated having to hold my very clingy baby all the time and felt really desperate to put him down for a bit so I understand how you feel.
I sort of trained him to play but playing with him for 5 mins, leave for 1 min, then slowly increase the alone time - eventually he would happily play for 30 mins without needing a cuddle. Do you have toys he’s engaged with alone at all?
Bertie botts has described exactly what ds loved. I put stuff in an old fashioned picnic basket with a hinged lid and he was like eeyore putting them in and out again
DS1 was very like this, he grizzled and cried most of the time if he wasn't being held. I did the only thing I could and used a baby sling when he was little and a back carrier when he was older. I remember getting ready for a drinks party and preparing all the food with him on my back. Once he had started to think about walking he became much more easy going.
A six month old can be carried on your back - get a good buckle carrier and see if someone nearby can show you how. My second child lived on my back - I was able to play with the first child, do the housework etc. My first two weren't like this, but the second baby was a snuggly one. With hindsight, it is his baby-hood I look back with the most fondness. Perhaps it is just because it lasted longer so I have more memories.
But, it is also totally okay to put him in the bouncer while you shower or do the dishes and ignore the screaming. I promise that no long term damage will come of this, he will be angry but that is not the same as feeling abandoned.
Thank you for all the advice! I’m sorry so many people thought I meant like a pet, bad choice of words!
We do have a sling but I usually only use it when shopping, I’ll give it a go in the house and see if it helps. The box sounds fun, too. He has toys he engages with, but he only really cares about them if I’m playing with them, too. He can cope for about five minutes when his brother plays with him and his toys before he starts screaming for me again.
A wrap saved my sanity with my velcro baby. They get major separation anxiety around this age and some need physical contact more than others, but it will pass, I promise!
DS1 was like this - and yes I did everything with him in a sling, except shower, which is when he sat in his bouncer and screamed at me through the shower door.
The only time I didn't have him in a sling, DP had him in a sling, or in the bath....
TBH, he didn't play alone until he was about 18 months.... although at least by then I didn't have to carry him.
I have 2 and they both enjoy their own space now, but still, if I go and sit down on the settee, one or both will kinda float over and sit on/next to me, draped on me somehow. They just like being close.
Your not unreasonable but babies just have needs rather than wants and some babies just need to be picked up all the time.
You can wear a sling in the house, this can help a lot if the baby likes it’s they are still close to you but your hands are freeeeeeee
Get dressed, put baby on the bed so he can see you, try singing a nursery rhyme or something to distract from the fact your not holding him.
Do you have a partner? I’ve alwys grabbed a shower before dh leaves for work I’m the morning or once his home it’s the only way. Or leave baby in a baby bouncer outside the bathroom, door open and again music can be used as a distraction.
I do have a partner but the baby doesn’t ever really want to go to him. My husband can’t settle the baby at night, he just cries for me. It makes me so proud that he’s a mummy’s boy but it’s hard work! I normally bathe at night after he’s down (one silver lining is that he’s an excellent sleeper) but last night I didn’t. My mil and her new partner are coming later and I just want to get dressed do my hair and put a little bit or make up on but I can’t concentrate with the screaming and I feel guilty and selfish for wanting to do things for myself when baby is upset .
I second Bertie boys too. I had a bag with a flappy top that had all sorts of random stuff in it and I would pack it up and present to DS/DD1/dd2 when required. Worked better with the dds but there was no way I could have used a sling at 6 months so didn’t have a choice.
Or the other thing in terms of toys which may entertain them is to find the flashiest, noisiest, most obnoxious thing you can. Sometimes that is interesting enough to hold your attention.
But it does sound like it might be useful for you to put some work into getting the baby comfortable in situations that he's not 100% comfortable with. If he cries with your partner it would be good for your partner to start spending more time with him in the day so that he can develop those skills as well and not always panic and hand him off to you, and even if he does cry, keep persevering as he is not on his own (I bet you've had days when you can't stop the crying either?). And trying to figure out what kinds of toys and distractions will hold his attention during the day and stretching out the time you leave him to it will give you a bit more freedom in that way as well. I don't mean that you need to leave him to cry if you don't want to, but allowing him to get a little bit frustrated can be good for them or letting him see you're nearby but not RIGHT with him can help too. I also wonder if you can enlist the help of your older child in some easy/foolproof distractions for the baby, that would help him feel involved and needed and it might buy you some time (do expect it to need a lot of hovering and supervision at first).
I'd recommend sling for a baby your age as well as smaller ones.
A sling and 2 pillows I accidentally destroyed the filling in are what work for our daughter.
I carried mine around in an ergo carrier. Cooked dinner with him strapped to.me quite often. One thing that worked quite well was the dip dap videos from cbeebies if you really need a break. Ds1 was mesmerised by a particular song and would stop crying instantly and listen. Ds2 was the same with a different song.
This phase will pass.
Ds loves a “treasure basket” I use it when I need to do something around the house - put laundry away is a good one. I sit him on our bed with his basket (an old shoe box with a lid) and he opens the lid and loves playing with the “treasure” - dry pasta in a sealed plastic tub, a soft flannel, wooden spoon, plastic measuring spoons, nice feathery cat toy (clean), a squeaker from a board game (taboo! I think) shoe lace, etc etc. The box changes often. I have a bigger box with my “treasure box” things in them.
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