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<p>I posted a few months ago about my DD, my sweet first born, going through a phase where she didn't want mommy, at all.</p>
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<p>Well...we got through that...quicker than I expected. Now, it's the opposite problem. I'm afraid there are a number of distinct issues that just happen to be combining at the moment to create the perfect storm for her...but....wits end? Yep. That's me.</p>
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<p>So...part 1) I cannot leave the room without her crying. It's like someone replaced my previously secure and confident preschooler with a full-blown separation anxiety-riddled infant. I cannot close the bathroom door, cannot walk down the hallway and don't even THINK about going in the bedroom w/ DH for a few minutes with the door closed (major romance-killer there). EVERY separation, even just me walking to the other room to wash dishes, is a battle. She cries and says she doesn't want me to leave her and then we proceed to protracted discussions about</p>
<p>part 2) Noises, monsters and dragons. She is scared. Of all of it. We live in the bottom level of an apartment with exceedingly noisy upstairs neighbors (it's so bad that we've had to contact the local rent board about it, but our landlords still refuse to do anything...we need to move, cannot afford it and that's just a totally different topic). There is pretty much constant noise, between the sounds from the street (which can be heard quite well from the front of our house, where she usually is) and our clomping upstairs neighbors. And EVERY single noise she hears, we have to have a discussion about "What's that noise mommy!? (panics)" This is a NEW development, within the last two weeks. It's so bad right now that I'm seriously concerned about some kind of auditory SPD (is that possible?). I mean...I've read through the SPD checklists and she fits VERY few of those descriptions...</p>
<p>As for the monsters and dragons...no matter what we do, she still brings it up, mostly at bed time or when I'm trying to leave the room (and I guarantee you she's most persistent about it when I really actually do NEED to leave the room). We've tried validating her - instead of insisting that they're not real, telling her we checked the room and there are NO monsters or dragons...doesn't work. We've tried reassuring her that they're only pretend (and limited her exposure to things that might suggest there are monsters or dragons out there). That doesn't help either.</p>
<p>Right now where we are is...I spend 2-3 hrs with her at night putting her to sleep. I have to lay with her until she's asleep otherwise we will have hours of meltdown. This leaves me frustrated and frayed to the last nerve, and her even more anxious.</p>
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<p>Here's the thing - she is monopolizing my time. I have a husband, a second daughter and a household to think about in addition to her. There are times when I think she is just acting like this for attention...but, at the same time...I know when I was a kid, I was really terrified of a lot of things, particularly, being separated from my mom. I was literally crippled by fear of being away from her. But I remember that from when I was around 8 or 9 - not four. I remember nightmares about my mom walking away from me and not even turning around while I called her name. To this day I've got issues with my mom. Sometimes when I look at DD going through this, I feel like I'm reliving how I felt as a kid and that scares me too...knowing what it felt like as a child to be that afraid and seeing her go through that. I want to soothe her fears and help her process what she's feeling and help her overcome her fears, but at the same time...holy cow!!! I want to pee with the door closed! I want to have a conversation with my husband without her flipping out and demanding I come and be with her. This problem is interfering with the most basic aspects of our family life...I don't know how to balance helping her deal with what she's going through, and minimizing it's seriously damaging affects on the rest of our family. She is so happy when I'm doing school or crafts with her, or playing board games or reading stories...basically, she's content when she has my undivided attention or when she's watching TV/playing her DS (cooking mama or mario kart), but otherwise, I'm most likely going to be negotiating, arguing or in some other way dealing with conflict from her about her NOT having my undivided attention.</p>
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<p>I combed through this board before I posted and was once again relieved to see I'm not the only mom who feels at the end of her rope with her child (this age?!)...I'm just worried.</p>
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<p>I think I'm forgetting something...but those are the main things...separation anxiety, fear of noises, fear of unseen things, LONG bedtimes and monopolizing mom's time...</p>
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<p>(did I mention she prays every night for a baby brother? I want to tell her there's NO WAY we can have another baby if she's going to be like this! I can barely manage washing the dishes, let alone caring for another babe!)</p>
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<p>anyone? crazy? should i have her looked at for SPD? is this normal kid stuff? is the stuff we freak out about and rush to evaluations and therapists for just normal kid stuff that our parents and grandparents would just ignore or deal with until it went away?</p>
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<p>thanks for reading. :) Happy Thanksgiving to all!</p>
 

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<p>HI Mama,</p>
<p>This sounds rough, and very similar to a phase my 4.5 year old went through a few months ago.  I read Playful Parenting by Cohen (I believe?) and he talks about one way to handle the "too attached" part.  The author writes that you should be (playfully- not mockingly) overly attached to your child, ham it up, and let your child explore attachment/separation in a safe way.  I used to say things like, "I have to go to the bathroom but I'm scared to leave my DD1.... I love her too much to leave her." combined with hugs, and sitting on her lap (way over the top acting).  She would push me away and scream, "GO POTTY with out me!"</p>
<p>good luck!</p>
<p>~maddymama</p>
 

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<p>Hugs to you. I'm re-read Listening effectively to Children by Patty Wipfler and just finishing up her article on healing children's fears. From what you wrote about your daughters fears, I think you would find her article helpful.  <a href="http://www.newsfromnowhere.org.uk/books/DisplayBookInfo.php?ISBN=9781584290308" target="_blank">http://www.newsfromnowhere.org.uk/books/DisplayBookInfo.php?ISBN=9781584290308</a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FListening-Children-Set-Patty-Wipfler%2Fdp%2F1891670301" rel="norewrite" target="_blank">http://www.amazon.com/Listening-Children-Set-Patty-Wipfler/dp/1891670301</a>. It should also be available through Hand in <a href="http://www.handinhandparenting.org/" target="_blank">Hand Parenting</a> as a PDF ( I think I saw it there).</p>
<p>I also read last week (having a 4.5dd myself) that it is normal for separation anxiety to appear again around age 5.</p>
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<p>I wish you all the best!</p>
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