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Will DD and DH ever stop fighting?

(11 Posts)
Barney10 Tue 23-Oct-12 21:03:43

DH wasn't around much during DD (4) early years and age and I became very close as I felt I had to make up for the fact he wasn't around. (He was away working a lot.) There was a period when she wouldn't entertain him at all, even being left in the same room as him but lately she has become a lot better and they do roll around together from time to time.

Having now had DS (8 mths) and seeing the joy on his face when Daddy walks in the room, I see exactly how DD should have been. Most of the time when he comes in from work she won't talk or even look at him and point blank refuses any kisses or cuddles, even when he's reading her stories.

I thought she might have grown out if it now that he's been around so much more, but it seems to have really entrenched itself and DH finds it so upsetting. I don't know what to do, am even contemplating seeing if the doc can recommend some counselling or am I being ridiculous?

Has anyone had a similar experience? Is there light at the end of the tunnel?

I was so close to my Dad, I hate the fact she's missing that bond :-((

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 23-Oct-12 21:29:22

That is pretty much how my dd was too at that age. How does DH react when she spurs him? Do they do any fun things together?

Barney10 Wed 24-Oct-12 07:23:37

Thanks for the reply.

Mostly he tries not to react but, as I say, sometimes it gets him down and he starts asking her why she's doing it. Last night it culminated in him walking out pretty upset.

I've been trying to encourage him to have an activity together, just the two of them, but he won't swim which she loves.

Did your DD get any better?

I wonder if she's found a way to get a reaction and is testing it out?

Barney10 Wed 24-Oct-12 18:59:18


midseasonsale Wed 24-Oct-12 19:24:08

I think being daft is key. He is probably coming across as too needy and this is a turn off. He should just creep in pretending to be a monster who will eat her - making silly noises and making her laugh. He could sweep her up into his arms and pretend to eat her and then plant a big kiss on her nose. Could be regular thing?

midseasonsale Wed 24-Oct-12 19:25:38

In fact silly behavior and daftness is the way to most kids hearts!

Barney10 Thu 25-Oct-12 06:26:13

They do muck around a fair bit now but when DH shows her any affection she grumbles and pulls away or wipes kisses off!

dancinginthemoonlight Thu 25-Oct-12 06:43:38

My husband is away a lot with work during the week and I found that having a weekly activity that just DH and DS do really works- even if its just they go into town for breakfast on a sat and then a play in the park. My DS gets very annoyed now if I try and do his Daddy activity on another day lol. what I also do is take a step back at the weekends so Daddy is in charge of childcare. I do the cleaning, cooking etc or go see a friend for coffee so that's its clear to DS who is his main go to person that day. It seems to work for us as DS is a very much a Daddy a boy!

FariesDoExist Thu 25-Oct-12 10:13:24

I think your DH needs to act as nonchalant as possible when your DD ignores him, and try not to let her see or feel a strong upset reaction from him. Your DD may well be picking up on it, and enjoying getting some attention for it.

She's very young and almost certainly doesn't know why she's doing it, and doesn't fully understand the emotional impact it has! Your DH needs to persist with being fun, loving, gentle with her and I'm sure she will grow out of it and move into a new phase. I think your DH has to continue to join in with her favourite play activity - colouring with her, playing lego with her, or whatever she really loves. And I bet she secretly does enjoy him reading with her, even if she's not showing it.

Also make sure your DD sees your reaction when your DH arrives home - let her see that you really love being around him.

Barney10 Thu 25-Oct-12 18:35:02

Thanks guys, will keep nagging encouraging DH to take her somewhere. I think we thought it has been so long she might have grown out of it by now. It's so down heartening for DH when he's pitting so much in and I would just love to see them close.

Vicky13 Thu 25-Oct-12 23:26:22

Hiya Barney

I had a similar problem with my DD when she was about 3. Her dad wasn't around much for the early years, and then suddenly he was, and DD would say really hurtful things like I hate daddy, and I wish daddy didn't live here.

Once I remember asking her why she hated him coming home, and she said "Because you talk to him and not me" and that got to the root of it - she was jealous that she no longer had my full undivided attention. I guess this might be going on with your DD - even more so because you've got the new baby too.

I made a real effort to continue to talk to her and show an interest in whatever jigsaw / Cbeebies programme that we'd been enjoying together rather than suddenly leaving her to watch on her own so I could have an adult conversation. Not that easy after 9 hrs of doing toddler activities. It really seemed to work.

Also I started going out at a fixed time once a week so he had to spend time doing the mundane bedtime routine. We'd fallen into a pattern of me doing all that, because I'd done it on my own for so long. Plus if she knew I was in the house, she'd play him up something rotten!

They have a great relationship now.


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