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Twig needs parenting help ... Would you ever tell a 4 year old NO when they say 'I want a hug"

(46 Posts)
Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:11:35

when they've said it every 5 minutes or so for weeks

and you are sure its to do with manipulation rather than a look for affection (ie when you refuse to carry them they suddenly say I want a hug)

it is driving me doolally at the moment and I don't know how to deal (this doesn't happen to me often TBH)

it might be to do with DD being 9 months old, but tbh she never gets cuddled cos he's always in my face

it has been especially bad since saturday


soapbox Mon 21-Feb-05 15:14:09

I wouldn't ever say no - but I would do my best to distract them

If pushed I might say something like 'as you can see I'm busy at the moment and when I give you hugs I want to concentrate all my attention on you. If you wait for a few minutes till I'm finished then I will come and give you an enormous hug.

Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:16:11

what? every 5 minutes? (not exaggerating with that .. it can be every 5 minutes for about 30 minutes)

SenoraPostrophe Mon 21-Feb-05 15:17:05

I was going to post exactly what Soapbox has said: wouldn't say no as such, but might say "in a minute" or even "later"

SenoraPostrophe Mon 21-Feb-05 15:18:02

have you tried doing it to him?

soapbox Mon 21-Feb-05 15:18:08

Well I think I'd use the distraction to try and increase the time between demands!

Have just noticed you are not feeling too well - in that case I'd probably tell them to bu**er off and leave me alone

Jimjams Mon 21-Feb-05 15:18:35

Hmm tricky one. I do move away from ds1 sometimes when he gets too much (he kind of crawls and slithers all over me pushing his face into mine and kissing me). I get up and move and then go back for a cuddle maybe 5 mins later.

Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:18:55

I haven't said 'no' yet .. but I'm getting bloody close

sobernow Mon 21-Feb-05 15:19:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

zippy539 Mon 21-Feb-05 15:19:33

Snap. DS has done this pretty much every twenty minutes for the last two years and I do sometimes say no. I've seen people looking at me in horror when I do it but, in DS's case I am certain that a lot of the time it is more often to do with manipulation than a genuine need for affection. It drives me completely nuts because the way he demands his 'hug' can be really aggressive! We've got a little DD as well - so maybe there is an insecurity element.

I do notice it is worse when he is coming down with something (only realise that in retrospect of course and so feel PARTICULARLY like a bad mother if I have been refusing him...)

Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:19:48

at the moment its fine .. he's gone to sit on the other couch, snuggled under a blanet and is annoying DD instead

BadHair Mon 21-Feb-05 15:21:59

My 4 yr old comes out with that one every time I'm busy with something that doesn't include him. If I know its just for attention I either just give him a very quick hug or tell him "later".

suzywong Mon 21-Feb-05 15:22:11

I have said "not right now" through gritted teeth when a telling off hasn't sunk in yet and I want him to know the error of his ways but I always give the hug in the end when we are both ready for it.

Agree about not bending to manipulation

marialuisa Mon 21-Feb-05 15:23:49

Well DD doesn't do it to irritate and although I've never said "no" I have "not heard" her request or said something like "hug my leg". She doesn't seem scarred.

Blu Mon 21-Feb-05 15:29:44

DS is saying 'I love you' every 5 mins - I think he's sort of 'discovered' it. It's more convenient than hugging - but sometimes I turn it into a different game - like I say 'I love your little nose' and he says 'I love your big nose'.
What if you said 'would you like a tickle?' or nibble or anyhting else that might break his pattern or habit?

Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:29:46

I like the turning it on him idea and have just done it twice

then he did it 4 times to me in quick succession

it might work though

SoupDragon Mon 21-Feb-05 15:33:51

"when you refuse to carry them they suddenly say I want a hug" Ooooh yes, DS2 used to do this. I would tell him "no, you don't want a hug, you want me to pick you up." First time of asking I would kneel down to hug at his height and then I'd be a hard, evil mother.

Twiglett Mon 21-Feb-05 15:46:18

again a good tactic Blu that I may also employ .. thanks

it is so good to know its not just me

handlemecarefully Mon 21-Feb-05 15:50:18

I would say (and have said):

I love you very much, but I honestly cannot hug you every 5 minutes as much as I might like to, because I am very busy. Lets wait until after baby ds has gone to bed, and then we can have mummy and dd special time.

Marina Mon 21-Feb-05 15:50:42

I love blu's suggestion too. Our ds's speciality after seeing Shrek 2 was to do the big Puss in Boots eyes whenever we asked him to do anything he didn't want to.
I would have no compunction in making a joke of it with him, "gosh, I just ran out of those", "but do you actually NEED one", etc.
The teeny-weeny voice in the back of my head saying "no, you actually want a thick ear, sonny" is never, ever acted upon.

WestCountryLass Mon 21-Feb-05 20:56:38

Do you think he could be coming down with something and feeling grotty?

emmatmg Mon 21-Feb-05 21:00:40

I've said no....a fair few times aswell.

I am a wicked evil mother, but they drive me mad!

rickman Mon 21-Feb-05 21:02:48

Message withdrawn

wordsmith Mon 21-Feb-05 21:04:41

I tend to say "I will when you've done XYZ" (Whatever I want him to do at that precise moment.)

I find bribery a very useful tool in child rearing!

Socci Mon 21-Feb-05 21:06:28

Message withdrawn

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