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Ds7 asking me why I hate him(5 Posts)
This is really upsetting me and I can't understand it. I tell 7yo DS I love him all the time. Loads of kisses and cuddles, lots of time together and no real arguments except for the usual 'hurry up and put your shoes on' malarkey that happens in every family. He's quite an anxious and insecure child and needs a lot of reassurance, although he is confident when he's in familiar surroundings and really bright. He often winds his 5yo brother up to get a reaction, clearly for attention. I am scrupulous about treating them equally but DS2 is bloody Perfect Peter so DS1 does get pulled up more. If I'm honest I suspect this makes DS1 feel insecure, but I'm really aware of that possibility and give him oodles of praise and love.
A few weeks ago DS1 started asking me why I love him. First I said all the usual stuff around 'because you're my child and you're amazing' etc. He looked unconvinced so the next time I made a joke of it ('I like how you burp' and so forth). Still not really convinced.
And then today he asked me why I hate him! I genuinely don't understand. I love both my kids so much and we are a really close and cuddly family. I'm telling them all the time about how amazing they are and I just don't understand how he could even ask the question. He could be winding me up of course, but I just have an instinctive feeling there's something there making him worried and sad and insecure. Anyone had similar?
Say 'Oh Dear, you sound really upset' mummy does love you very much. I wonder what's making you feel this way...:'
Maybe a bit of one to one time doing something fun would help..?
I'm always reminding myself: Children spell love : T.I.M.E.
Remember that he’s only 7 and he probably doesn’t attach as much emotional weight to the word “hate” as you do. I don’t think he’s necessarily worried or sad or insecure - I think it could be more a case of a bright, curious boy doing a bit of thinking and questioning about families and feelings and relationships and how it all works. So personally I would stay fairly bright and breezy over this one and not take it to heart or read to much into it. Don’t say “don’t ever say that again!” or something else that tries to censor his emotions. Try not to look too upset as he may partly be saying it in an attention-seeking way (as he can see how much it bothers you). Just keep telling the truth, that you love him so much and he’s fab and you’ll always love him no matter what. Be prepared for this to come up again, possibly several times, as he seeks reassurance.
Of course, if he’s showing any other signs of anxiety (eg not wanting to go to school, not eating or sleeping as well as usual, seeming more withdrawn and less chatty) then there may be something more serious going on that you need to get to the bottom of.
Thanks for your comments, they've helped me take a step back and get this in perspective. You're right, he's 7. I'm clearly overthinking things! I don't think anything else has changed, so breezy it is.
I'd reply "I don't hate anything about you but I wish you'd remember to pick up your socks" or whatever minor annoying thing he does.
I suspect he doesn't mean hate as strongly as an adult means it.
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