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Getting a bit fed-up with "over tactile" DS (5)(17 Posts)
Ok, to start this off, I am in the middle of my period (and this tends to make me much less favourable to being touched) and have a massively sore throat (and want to curl up and die until it feels better).
DS is 5 and VERY tactile and affectionate. I am very affectionate too: love hugs and cuddles. Stroking his hair. Holding his hand. We are close and affectionate.
However, DS is going very an "over tactile" phase (hands up my top, down my top, up my sleeves... Very often in public, think that my flesh is his "security blanket" - a stranger talks to him and up my top goes, hands everywhere, me exposed...).
DS is also going through a very rough stage: most kisses are "nose breakers", touching my arms often ends in painful kneading/pinching, I am always being leapt on, squashed, elbows in my tummy, a hug around my neck (and sore throat) is more like strangulation). None of it is in any way nasty, but he does have a mischievous streak. I have been saying "gentle" for months, but it is having no affect and DS is just getting worse. It is mainly me he does it to, occasionally other relations. He does try to hug/tickle strangers too, but haven't seen him be rough with friends or anyone else.
I am getting seriously hacked off (especially with PMS and sore throat). I am getting to the stage of wanting to just yell (ok "croak" ) "leave me alone!". I know it it awful and wrong, but I am beginning to hate being touched
Please help me deal with this. I want DS to be able to touch and be affectionate without going overboard.
Sounds like he is pushing his boundaries to see how far he can go.
I have a very tactile 3.5 year old so i kind of get it, i think.
I personally would remove him from yourself physically whenever he does it, sit him away from you and say no very firmly, then explain that he is hurting you, or his behaviour is inappropriate. Then ask him to come back when he is ready to give you a nice cuddle instead and show you how he can do it nicely.
At 5, he fully understands a simple explanation, and you wont emotionally damage him by giving him firm boundaries. If you dont give him boundaries some other child / person is likely to hurt him physically / say something mean as a reaction to this behaviour which would be far more detrimental. Be a bit tougher with him. Good luck.
Talk to him and keep explaining. Along the lines of "I know you love touching mommy and I love touching you too but please not now, I am feeling ill/tired" etc. draw your boundaries friendly but firmly. Also worth saying that your body is yours and his body is his and that although it's nice to hold hands, please not always. Could you say "not now but we can have cuddle / tickle time this afternoon"? If he pushes you and doesn't take no as a answer send him to time out / withdraw a treat etc. at 5 he is definitely capable of learning about boundaries and should for his own good.
Please don't tell hi to "leave you alone" as he won't understand and might take it badly, draw your boundaries before it gets to that.
I say to DS who is 8 with severe special needs that he has to ask before he touches people, just a simple "no ask first" then "that's enough"
When I've been mauled all day I end up saying 'just keep your hands to yourself!'
It does get annoying.
Especially after I've spent ages getting my hair to behave and then he puts his hands all in it and messes it right up again
I totally understand this my 5 year old ds is not too bad now but my 2 year old drives me crazy with her hand down my top. I would just tell him you still love him but he needs to stop, problem is if he's anything like mine I'm not sure they realise they're doing it half the time.
Thank you very much - you are all very right. I need to be (even) tougher/firmer.
I do reinforce "gentle" and show how to be gentle (ie gentle stroking, kisses, hugs) and I do tell him to "stop" and "don't be rough" when he doesn't listen.
I think it is a very difficult/ frustrating age: they are pushing /defining boundaries and "skating right on the edge of them" - so often behaviour is right on the edge of acceptable . If you do anything you feel like Hitler, if you don't then it is one or two micro-escalations from being bad. Hard to explain (bad head). Things aren't black or white.
Not helped by "over excitement" of Christmas and now being away visiting family.
I ry to avoid "leave me alone". DH often barks "leave mummy alone" (which I tell him off for) - agree, it is a bad phrase.
Agree that it is very important that he learns to accept others personal space and that any touch needs to be acceptable and welcome and on the receiver's terms.
Love him to bits, honestly
You have my total sympathy as I have a 5yo DS who is exactly the same. He doesn't seem to distinguish his body from mine. I end up getting 'touched out' and just have to walk away to prevent myself exploding.
I particularly hate the burrowing in/under my clothing. Distraction does help and I try and explain my frustration gently. He just loves his Mummy (too much sometimes)
Aww I love DS too, but recently DM took us both out for a meal and I couldn't eat for his greasy ketchup hands mauling with my hair. It aggravates me at times
Oh I bought him one of those girls worlds heads for Christmas, but the Elsa one, thinking he could mail with her hair and leave me alone.
At first he looked over the moon with it, until I said "see you can play with her hair now instead of mummys"
Cue the darkest look I've ever seen and elsa being put pointedly in the toy box.
Yes, I definiteky know I am loved (to pieces. Sometimes literally...)
He gets lots and lots of affection and cuddles - so knows that he is loved back too.
It is just about kindly-but-firmly reinforcing boundaries. Again and again and again and...
He was given a sort of "squeeze stress ball" for Christmas. Partially broke it within 2 minutes if opening. Completely broken on 27th
I think 5 is usually old enough to show affection appropriately. Kisses are nice, hugs are nice, holding hands and all manner of loving gentle contact is lovely....being mauled, pestered and even hurt in the process is not.
Be encouraging and delighted with the former, firmly say "no thank you" and remove yourself (rather than pushing him away) to the latter. It does work, and with a minimum of hurt feelings. x
aahhh, I know what you mean very well. I have a very tactile DD. My sex life with DH has definitely suffered because I am 'over-touched' (kneaded, hugged, stroked, pinched, clutched, kissed and dragged on) during the day and just want to be left well alone when with DH. It's quite oppressive isn't it?
At 5 though, unless there are developmental delays or special needs I absolutely think that a child is old enough to understand boundaries. When DD turned 4 I started to put those boundaries in place, I would say things like 'Mummy loves you very much but needs 5 mins to concentrate on such and such and I can't concentrate if you're all over me' or 'Mummy loves your cuddles is feeling really tired and just needs some peace and quiet so you need to go find something else to do'. If she wasn't complying I would put her in her room for a couple of minutes so she was physically removed from me altogether. Sounds harsh, but she was starting school that year so being able to follow basic instructions and exhibit some self-control was important. Also, I thought that it was for her benefit as it was about developing empathy and respect for the feelings of others. My body and time don't belong 100% to her. I also instituted certain times when she just wasn't allowed to be all over me, for me it was when I was eating and when I was in the bathroom (using the loo or washing or getting on some makeup) . . . it was nice to know that there were certain times in the day when I could escape the mauling! Don't get me wrong, we are still immensely tactile and 80% of the time she can be found on me, but last year it was 99% of the time and it was too much.
I particularly think that if he exposes you in public with the hands off the top that's not OK. Surely you can explain that it is cold and embarrassing to have your top lifted in public, and he is absolutely not to do it . . . . perhaps you can substitute something like a squeeze of the hands or a toy he carries about, but I think it's absurd to let a child of 5 lift your top and have a rummage when out and about.
Hope you get a solution that works for you and your DS.
My DS also 5 can be very tactile and does like to see me as his personal property. I have been very firm with him recently about when it is ok to touch me and when not. He gets told not to climb behind me on the sofa because I don't like it and he is too heavy to hang on my neck now. He also gets firmly told to get out from under my skirt and that I don't like my skirt being pulled up - when I need to I remove him physically and remind him I have said no and why.
My DS knows that I love him to bits and that when he wants proper cuddles he can have them pretty much wherever we are.
I do think it's better to be straight forward with them though rather than spending ages saying things like 'be gentle' or 'be kind' - you need to define exactly what this means otherwise it's open to their interpretation of what is gentle or kind to do and if they are pushing boundaries then they're likely to carry on doing whatever they like with you.
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