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"You don't love me ..." - how do I deal with this from my 3yo?

(6 Posts)
DontCallMeBaby Mon 16-Jul-07 21:41:29

I thought books were supposed to be good for kids? I swear this is all the fault of 'I Love You, Little Monkey' ... anyway. DD is 3.4, and has recently taken to announcing, lower lip a-wobble, that 'you don't love me' if DH or I are at all sharp with her, or even if we tell her quite neutrally not to do something. It does pull me up short when I'm going a bit off the rails, and then I'll tell her of course I love her, but sometimes I don't like the way she behaves (yeah, just like the book). But when I'm suggesting quite calmly that she not do something? It's getting a bit wearing.

What do you think? Continue with the 'of course I do'? Or 'deal with it' in some way? She's only little, but it just seems horribly manipulative, and I don't want her to learn that it 'works' (although as I say, it IS a rather good wake-up call for me when I'm being unreasonable with her).

IdrisTheDragon Mon 16-Jul-07 21:47:05

DS (3.7) does this sometimes. I generally say that I do love him, but that maybe I don't like what he's doing. I try and keep it low key (but don't always succeed ).

The other thing he does that is hard to deal with is when DH or I are getting him to do something he doesn't want to do (a normal thing like get into the car) and he will say "that's not a nice thing to do Mummy/Daddy" and we end up feeling like really great parents (not). Sometimes that too will pull me up a bit, but other times I think he's just trying out different things to say.

Anyway, haven't really got much to say, but you aren't alone .

motherinferior Mon 16-Jul-07 21:50:46

I preface most tellings off with 'I love you, DD2, AND...' It heads her off at the first tear-jerking pass

binkleandflip Mon 16-Jul-07 21:53:43

I will answer my dd that I do love her very much - once.

She will generally keep repeating it but I have learnt to respond - I love you, I have told you I love you and everyday I tell you I love you, I wont say it again now.

HonoriaGlossop Mon 16-Jul-07 21:59:46

binkle, I've just agreed with you on another thread (mozhe!) and here I am agreeing again Say it once, then ride it out and don't pay it attention.

Some kids do seem to be gifted with this emotional blackmail gene IYKWIM and i think the best thing really is to show her that it doesn't get results; otherwise, if it does get results, of course you're just re-inforcing that she must do it again. Be strong

DontCallMeBaby Mon 16-Jul-07 22:37:19

Mm, good stuff. I like the one-off response to it, then no more (happily I DO tell her every day that I love her, so it would be true).

I'm tempted to go for the 'I love you AND ...' approach, if only so I can say some of the things I feel I can't. Would 'I love you, and I'd like you to stop talking for five minutes before my head explodes' be okay, I wonder?

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