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Attention Seeking?

(8 Posts)
cherrybea Mon 20-Dec-10 15:07:52


My 2.11 year old dd has recently started saying 'I feel sick' or 'I'm tired' or 'I don't feel well' constantly. Just to clarify she is sleeping all night and eating normally. As a family however we have all had a nasty v&d bug which went on in both dd's for quite a while and resulted in dd2 (6mo) being hospitilised with dehydration.

I'm sure this is for attention or to get out of tasks, like she says she's tired when asked to do something like put her rubbish in the bin. I'm desperately trying to ignore her as much as possible and hoping it's a faze that will pass, but I'm looking for reassurance that I'm not being a bad mother and should be cuddling her and comforting her more or taking these claims seriously and taking her to a gp.

hillyhilly Mon 20-Dec-10 15:11:58

Ignore her, my 3 yr old DS does this all the time, "my tummy hurts" - but only at the bottom of our hill that he has to walk up, his current one is "I'm cold" - what they want to you do is to drop everything swoop them up in your arms and lavish them with 100% of your attention - I do occasionally do that to make him laugh but mostly I've got stuff to do so I ignore him ortake the piss out of him blush

HeathcliffMoorland Mon 20-Dec-10 15:35:20

Ignoring works.

Another useful one is giving the child 'consequences' of being ill.

For example - 'sick people stay in bed/too poorly to watch tv/too sick to eat treats/not well enough to play outside'.

I like the consequences a lot, because it helps me tell the difference between illness and faking. grin

cherrybea Mon 20-Dec-10 16:29:38

Hilly/Heath - thanks for the advice, I will continue to ignore her.

Heath - I've been using consequences and it's amazing how quickly she 'feels better', I just thought this would have sunk in by now and she'd stop saying it.

coldtits Mon 20-Dec-10 16:31:26

TBH, if a child is seeking attention, it's best to find a way to give them more attention, because the need for attention doesn't go away if you ignore it, anymore than toothache does.

gothicmama Mon 20-Dec-10 16:33:25

well said coldtits there is normally a need behind the behaviour

cherrybea Mon 20-Dec-10 16:38:02

She's always been very independent and preferred to play on her own using her imagination though we do sing songs, build, bake together, she's not left to her own devices all day. This seemed to start after dd2 was admitted to hospital and I had to go in with her for a few days. I wonder if she does need some reassurance and associates being sick with getting me to herself.

coldtits Mon 20-Dec-10 17:19:36

Then she needs to know that you would do the same for her if it had been her who had been sick.

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