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How affectionate is your toddler?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Just curious...

It occurred to me that I can count on one hand the number of times DS has been spontaneously affectionate (verbally or physically). My friends' kids are more affectionate to me than my own DS. Maybe it's a boy vs. girl thing or something...
post #2 of 11

I think it's a personality thing.  My mom says I wouldn't even let her hug me past age 2.  Of course i loved my Mom then and now, I'm just not an overly expressive person.  My feelings are deep and tend not to surface you might say.

 

My DS2.5 is extremely demonstrative and sooo very affectionate.  I don't think he's capable of hiding or containing anything he feels.  He tells me he loves me almost every morning when he wakes up, is always giving me kisses, and saying things like " I'm going shopping with my best friend, Mom!" 

 

There is a flip side too, like when I make him try to nap and he says "I don't like Mom!" 

 

So I would definitely not take it to mean that your DS doesn't feel affection for you, just that his emotions run deep and are not easy for him to express.

post #3 of 11

I think it's a personality thing too, and maybe age with my DS. He just recently started initiating and giving "real" hugs and kisses (before he would sort of lean into you but would not use his arms at all). I've wondered about this too, because he used to be  (and sometime still is) very clingy and loves being held but is not what I would call affectionate. He smiles when we say "I love you" to him but he usually doesn't say it back. But he does take a while to warm up to people and new situations so I believe it's just who he is.

post #4 of 11

I was wondering this recently, too. My DS is 2.5 and is incredibly affectionate~ but mostly just with me. He also goes on little hugging sprees with his female friends, and sometimes it's like he's a big puppy dog who's not quite aware of his own strength or exuberance. It's sooo sweet though. With his dad and other relatives, he often has to be asked to give hugs, whereas with me it's spontaneous. Sometimes to the point I get touched out~ but I try and remind myself that there will be many a day/year when I will miss his unabashed affection!

post #5 of 11

Agree with PPs that it is personality dependent but I just wanted to say hugs to you OP bc that must be very hard on you, to be doing the difficult job of parenting without getting  the affection 'rewards' from your kid that sweeten the deal.  I know you've had various struggles with your DS and my heart goes out to you, this issue (while not necessarily out of the ordinary) also strikes me as something that must be tough on you. hug2.gif

post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mambera View Post

Agree with PPs that it is personality dependent but I just wanted to say hugs to you OP bc that must be very hard on you, to be doing the difficult job of parenting without getting  the affection 'rewards' from your kid that sweeten the deal.  I know you've had various struggles with your DS and my heart goes out to you, this issue (while not necessarily out of the ordinary) also strikes me as something that must be tough on you. hug2.gif

Yes... thank you. innocent.gif It is pretty hard not having that 'reward'... I mean I know he loves me but sometimes you want to hear it, see it, feel it, you know? My friends talk about how their kids tell them "I love you" and "You look beautiful this morning" and give them hugs and kisses... that must be so amazing. Well, I know it's amazing because my friends' kids are like that with me (well, not as much as with their parents of course!) It's hard feeling like I'm just... an object, in a way...

DS did need to be taught how to hug because he used to just lean in. He frequently avoids hugs altogether. Once or twice he has said "I love you too" without prompting but never completely spontaneously. He's hugged me maybe 2 times without prompting and kissed me once. In 2.5 years. greensad.gif I know it's hard for him because when he does say "I love you too" or something, he says it in a different voice & won't look me in the eye, like he is guarding himself a bit. Oh well. It's ironic because like Momo123's DS, he is incredibly clingy but that rarely translates into actual affection. Figured DS wasn't the only one like this but was just curious how other toddlers are!!
post #7 of 11

Hm... I think there's a lot of variation at this age in how affectionate kids are and how they show their affection.  My son (2) is a huge snuggler.  He will climb up in my lap (what's left of it) and say "snuggle me!" or at bedtime he'll say "I want mommy to lie down in bed with me and snuggle."  But he doesn't really do hugs/kisses on any sort of regular basis though and definitely not spontaneously.  And despite being very verbal, he never tells me he loves me.  (He does occasionally tell me how much he likes Daddy.  "I like Daddy.  Mommy, I really like Daddy.  I actually like him a lot."  Thanks, kid.) 

 

So while I wouldn't describe him as not affectionate, he also has his own idea of what affection is, I guess...

post #8 of 11

Our 28month old DD has just started to become spontaneously affectionate.

It was in small spurts when she was younger. Or at least she may reciprocate sometimes. And then she became anti-affectionate for quite a while. She would just say "I no like Mummy" or "I no like Daddy". Or if we told her we loved her she would say "I don't love you".

Now, just recently she has become very much spontaneously affectionate. She will come up and snuggle and touch our faces and say "Daaaddddyyyyy" in a syrupy voice. Or ask for a family hug. (she loved those where her Mum and I squeeze her between us).

 

It is hard to not get that reward. But maybe for your son it will come in spurts like it does for my DD.

post #9 of 11

DD (19 months) is pretty snuggly and affectionate, but I understand where you're coming from on this because I have consistent problems feeling like a have a good connection with her.  She often just isn't very responsive to me, although she is with strangers and with Daddy.  As you say in your post, I have satisfying interactions with other people's babies at playgroup moreso than with my own.  It's frustrating, and I end up thinking about it way too much - which definitely doesn't help!

post #10 of 11

I was thinking about starting this very thread when I found your post! DD is 22 months, and although she is extremely loving, she isn't affectionate. . .except towards her little brother. She will crawl over broken glass (hypothetically, of course) to give him a kiss and tell him she loves him. Us. . .well, she kisses me after nursing her to sleep at night. She's in a milk haze, more than half out of it, and then I get a kiss! I LIVE for that kiss! She's in a toddler program two days a week and the teachers have told me she is the most loving kid in the class. That makes me happy! But oh, what I wouldn't give to snuggle with her! I try to snuggle and she says, "No want it, mama." My friend has two thoughts on this: 1) I'm not an overly affectionate person. I love well, but I'm not super, out there affectionate, and never have been so maybe DD is modeling my behaviors, 2) I've done such a wonderful job with attachment parenting that she doesn't NEED to show me how attached she is to me with snuggles and the likes. It probably just comes down to personality type. He little brother is 4 months old and the King of Snuggleland. orngbiggrin.gif

post #11 of 11

My babe, almost 3 wasn't always affectionate till recently, now she always tries to outdo me with hugs and kisses.

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