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Daughter seems to have completely gone off me, what can I do? (long one)

11 replies

Janus · 25/11/2002 10:43

My 2 year old seems to have gone off me and I am finding myself getting very upset about this.
It all started about 2 or 3 weeks ago, the main thing that happened around this time is that my partner went away on business for 2 weeks. I went down to my Mum and Dad's for that time and we had a lovely 2 weeks, lots of walks in the country, fun with grandparents and we seemed to be the closest ever, she came in every morning and her first words were 'I love you Mummy'. When my partner came back she was firstly really upset to see him, cried for about 15 mins and we were all a bit shocked at her because she never cries even when held by a complete stranger, etc but after this she was very loving.
Some time (can't remember exactly how long) after this she started coming out with 'Daddy do it' when I was trying to give her breakfast or read a book with her or put her down for a sleep etc. TBH after 2 weeks of doing everything I didn't mind her insisting on Daddy! However, this has continued and she has become a lot more passionate. If I even follow her down the stairs now she says 'go away Mummy', even when Daddy isn't anywhere near her. She generally tells me to go away or leave her alone a few times a day now.
First of all I used to let Daddy do whatever she wanted him to do. Then I tried ingnoring her dislike of me and would carry on doing whatever it was she was protesting about but she would become even more upset with me. Finally I have found I just walk away when she starts and the past couple of days I have gone somewhere and had a cry.
The other factors which may contribute is she has been ill for the past 4 or 5 days but it has been me getting up in the middle of the night for her and she lets me settle her then. The other thing is I'm 21 weeks pregnant and showing more and more each day, could she realise what's coming and resent me already? Also, she has just started 2 mornings a week at a nursery which her first 'on her own' day last week went terribly (she cried most of the morning apparently) but this I have now put down to her first day of her illness as she did cling to me for the rest of the afternoon.
We've always had a lovely relationship, I've been at home since she was born and so we've had the chance to do lots together, classes, swimming, music, walking, drawing, etc. We have also moved house recently so are trying to build up new classes to do, etc, so we are doing a little less in the day than we used to, especially with all this wet weather.
Anyway, what I'm really trying to ask is if anyone has had this happen to them and how did they deal with it? Dare I also ask how long this lasts? Do you think it's something I've done? Is there some real 'bonding' activity someone can think of?
Sorry this is so long.

OP posts:

grape · 25/11/2002 10:57

Hi Janus,

First of all, congratulations on your pregnancy. My dd is 2.5 and for the past week has been saying "go away mummy". It doesn't upset me at all as I know it's just another phase she's going through. She also goes to nursery and I know that she picks up sayings from other children. Try not to let it get to you (easier said than done).


bundle · 25/11/2002 11:49

Janus, sympathies for you..especially with your pregnancy hormones dd is still a bit of a mummy's girl, so I'm sure we've got this to come.
It sounds like there have been a lot of changes lately for your family, especially your dd so this shift in her affections may be exaggerated by all of that. I'm 20 wks pg and dd talks about the baby a lot, cuddles other people's babies and I think is looking forward to her sister arriving. I don't think I've done anything special, I think it's the luck of the draw (their personality, their age, circumstances etc) so don't beat yourself up over it, because you sound like a lovely mum who fills her days with lots of nice things.


Azzie · 25/11/2002 12:21

Oh Janus, I know just how you feel. My dd has just turned three and seems to be going through a phase like this. The other morning she came into our bed, then when dh got up to have his shower she started kicking me and telling me to get out of the bed and wouldn't stop. I was very tired because she had had me up in the night, and ended up getting out of bed and going downstairs in tears, telling dh that the kids were his problem and that I had had enough. At the moment dd seems to be winding me up like this all the time, testing her power over me. I'm really struggling with her sometimes.

In contrast, my 5yo ds is so easy and lovely and affectionate to me at the moment that I feel I'm in danger of favouring him over her, because he's so much nicer and more likeable than her. I don't remember him going through this sort of phase. And then I feel horribly sorry for dd because I don't like her very much quite a lot of the time, and have to struggle not to push her away, and then I feel horribly guilty because of it.

I should say here that I DO love dd, the thought of anything happening to her fills me with sick dread. I just don't like her very much a lot of the time.

Has anyone out there been through what Janus and I are going through at the moment? Is it a phase? Is it a girl thing? Is there anything we can do about it?


sobernow · 25/11/2002 12:21

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SofiaAmes · 25/11/2002 22:20

congrats on the pregnancy. Try to take advantage of the daddy do it phase! You are pregnant and need a break and what better excuse to get your partner to do all the work than your dd insisting on it. My ds went through a mild phase of this right at the end of my pregnancy (he was 23 mo.) and for the first few weeks after the birth. As far as I was concerned it was a godsend as I really needed the energy for the new baby. As wonderful as my husband is with the children he definitely needs prodding as I don't think he's quite twigged that they eat three meals a day and need to have nappies changed more than once a week. The baby is now 8 weeks and ds is back to wanting mummy most of the time.


WideWebWitch · 25/11/2002 22:38

Janus, it sounds to me as if a lot of things happened all at once: your partner went away for a bit; you stayed somewhere different for a while; she went to playgroup; she realised you are pregnant; she's been ill. Could all these factors combined be to blame? Agree with sobernow about the fact that your dd does feel secure enough to do this to you, knowing that you will still love her unconditionally. That's how I see it from the outside anyway. It's hard when you're in the situation though isn't it? I know that when my ds has been a s* and says he hates me etc etc I feel really upset but afterwards, when I think about it, I really think he must be very secure in my love to be able to behave like this. Maybe I'm way off here but I'd guess that it's a phase to do with all the changes and that it will pass. So no, I don't think it's anything you've done and I think it will pass. Keep doing what you've been doing and good luck.


Catt · 26/11/2002 09:32

Janus, it's definitely not just a girl thing because my ds also does this (he's 2.5). Whenever he's hurt he will always run to daddy if he's there and I'm very much a second choice in everything. It only gets to me occasionally. Mostly I'm really glad he's got such a great relationship with his dad.

Having said that, if dh isn't around and ds says 'no mummy, daddy do it', then I just get on with it and tell him mummy's doing it this time whether he likes it or not.

Part of it seems to be down to the fact that kids this age seem to want to have things very predictable and pre-determined. Daddy gets me out of bed, daddy changes me, mummy puts my jacket on and takes me to nursery... Any change in the pattern and they think their world has turned upside down.

It'll pass, like all phases I guess.


deegward · 27/11/2002 20:33


We are so similar, my ds is 2 3/4 and I'm around 23 weeks pregnant, and yes my ds somes days says 2 " go away Mummy" or even the really bad one... " I don't like you".

I was getting really upset, and then I read somewhere that you should just respond, "thats a shame, because I really love you" and leave it at that. Since I have started doing this his "bad comments have become less. But I agree the whole pregnancy hormone thing does not help.

Hope this helps, if only to know there is someone else going throught it as well. Take care, and enjoy just now, just think in a few months we will have TWO of these darlings around!!


Emski · 29/11/2002 20:53

My daughter was 2 last month, and also started nursery at the same time. I've had a few 'go away Mummy's from her recently, but have really just tried to ignore it, sometimes just telling her that it's not a very polite/kind thing to say. She's actually worse with her Dad than she is with me, and sometimes I feel sorry for him. Anyway, I really think a lot of it comes from Nursery, since she's been there she really comes out with some stuff, and certainly shouts a lot more!. I suppose this is 'the age' for this sort of thing too. I do sympathise, it's not a very nice thing, but it is something that will pass. We have to try to remember that one day all our little ones will (hopefully) turn out to be quite nice people!?!.


Janus · 30/11/2002 16:37

Thanks everyone, she is obviously much 'worse' at weekends when Dad is around but I have decided that if she wants him to do things, great! Of course my own state of mind greatly reflects on how I deal with this, mostly I'm a happy person so it doesn't bother me at all. Last week was a nightmare though, daughter's first proper day at nursery was a complete failure (she cried for about 3 hours and I feel terrible for not 'being there', she was then ill which meant I was up at all hours, weather was lousy, didn't see anyone as didn't want to pass illness on, was probably just going slightly mad!! As soon as things have eased up I feel much less offended and I'm sure daughter realises and seems much more loving again, I think they really do pick up on your own moods and I probably wouldn't of wanted to be with me last week either!
As you all say, it's another phase they go through and (as long as I'm not having a terrible week!) I'm sure I'll deal with it from now on. Helps to know she is just doing as many other toddlers are doing, especially as I see two other similar threads started this week too. Bless 'em hey!

OP posts:

Janus · 30/11/2002 16:38

PS Don't know how that smiley face appeared!

OP posts:
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