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My daughter is 15 months old. Over the last 2-3 months, she's become all about mama. She wants to be with me every minute. I can't leave the room to pee without her screaming. While I'm cooking, she comes over and clings to my legs and tries to climb up me. I can't get anything done in my house because she wants to not only be with me all the time, but have my full attention most of the time as well.

I wouldn't use the word "clingy" to describe her because I think of that word as having fearful connotations. It's not that she's scared of people or not adventurous or just a big complainer. She just wants me all the time. The instant I pick her up, she's happy, even if she was just screaming like she was being stuck with knives. She's very happy to interact with other people and is very friendly and smiley.

I've heard that this is just a stage and that it's especially bad when they're learning to walk. She can't walk yet, but will stand unaided for 30 seconds at a time and occassionally take one step to get to something to hold on to. So I guess it's safe to say that she's learning to walk. She also doesn't talk at all. I think not being able to walk or talk is frustrating for her.

Most babies I know go to day care. Most babies I know would also be described as laid back and independent. I often wonder if perhaps the babywearing, co-sleeping, extended breastfeeding thing is encouraging her to want to be around me all the time. On one hand, I feel that that's natural and I definitely don't want to stop doing all those things. But on the other hand, I wonder how anything is ever going to change. I have still never left her for more than 4 hours, and even that long of a separation is a rare occurence. We've never had a babysitter, and if we tried now the whole neighborhood would hear about it.

Since I don't want to change how I parent her, I guess what I'm trying to accomplish here is to find out if this is common for AP babies at this age, and if so, when it might start to fade. Also, would the situation be helped by putting her into more socially challenging situations, like getting a babysitter for an hour or two, even if I'm in the house, or putting her in a playgroup for a couple of hours per week, or would that just make things worse by stressing her out at a time when she just needs to feel the security of having her mama with her 24/7?

I don't want to find myself in a situation when she needs to go to school of her being completely unable to deal with being away from me. I know that's unlikely, but since she's become more and more demanding of my presence with each passing day of her life (and she's my first baby), part of me wonders if that trend will just continue.

Thanks very much.
 

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hugs mama

i think this is a common stage, and my daughter (17 months) does it too sometimes. it sounds like she is going her own route, in her own pace. My daughter doesn't say much either. I think it is fabulous that you are listening to your own heart in regards to responding to her when she needs you. Because you address her needs now so willingliy, she is only trusting you more and more to address her needs, and before you know it, will be pushing off into independence. but i think children whose needs are met early in life (like now) will be better off in the long run as adolescents and adults, because they have learned that their parents are there for them wherever they are at. I hope this helps! hang in there, it is a tough age!
 

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Hmmm...I think lots of "independent and laid-back babies" are actually "resigned" and have "given up."

Once a need is met, it goes away.

Babies and toddlers have high, high needs.

Ignore the need, and it will only resurface later in new and "interesting" ways.

You'll know when she's ready to be left with others or have some time away from you. You'll just see her growing and gaining more confidence and you can ask her if it's OK with her and do a trial run, etc. It will be fine!

Hang in there! Sounds like you're doing great!!
 

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DD was incredibly needy for a very long time and only just recently at 2.5 has she been happy to be left with anyone else other than me. and now she wants to go to DH's church nursery and to be outside with DH and her brothers. Just keep meeting her needs and she will be fine.
 

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I don't know what it is about that age...but all the kiddos I know, my DS included, around 12 months get very clingy, easily upset, very mama mama mama. My DS is almost 17 months and he really left that phase at about 15 months, but it still shows its head sometimes. I think it's really common.
Just go with your gut and be there for her. She need sthat reassureance in the world.
I believe it's hard for them to have these new skills and be a "big kid", but really, they are such babies still and it's an overlapping of phases. On one hand they are independent, on the other, they NEED so much. So just give her what she needs from you depending on her mood.
 

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(nak) ds went through a major clingy phase at 15-16mos. at the time i thought it might be because i was very pregnant, but other mamas reassured me that their littles went through this at just about the same age.

hth
 

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Hmmm, dd is 12.5 months and shows no signs of clinginess (has been walking for at least a month). We are very AP (although had to give up co-sleeping at 9 months since she kicked me all night and I got no sleep). But other than that, lots of slinging, still bfing, etc. But she has always been a super independent baby, and never minds when I go off and do my own thing. She happily plays by herself while I work in the kitchen, pick up, clean, etc. I've left her with my mil several times for a few hours, and I swear, it's like she didn't even notice I was gone! Which isn't really true, because the one time she was really tired and hungry when I returned, and she "held it together" while with mil, but had a meltdown as soon as she saw me (I think this is because she knows it's safe to "be herself" with me). So there was that difference, but really she doesn't seem to mind being away from me, with other people, etc.

I keep waiting for separation or stranger anxiety to hit, but so far, nothin'. I've come to believe that this type of behavior is mostly affected by personality. I think a baby who would not have stranger/separation anxiety if they were well-attached to their mama, *might* have it if they don't have a secure attachment. But some babies are just going to have it, no matter how they're parented. But I agree with pps ... meet her needs now, and things will be much better down the line. I don't think you can "force" a child to be independent. They'll just give up. My 2 cents ...
 

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Quote:
My daughter is 15 months old. Over the last 2-3 months, she's become all about mama. She wants to be with me every minute. I can't leave the room to pee without her screaming. While I'm cooking, she comes over and clings to my legs and tries to climb up me. I can't get anything done in my house because she wants to not only be with me all the time, but have my full attention most of the time as well.
I wouldn't use the word "clingy" to describe her because I think of that word as having fearful connotations. It's not that she's scared of people or not adventurous or just a big complainer. She just wants me all the time. The instant I pick her up, she's happy, even if she was just screaming like she was being stuck with knives. She's very happy to interact with other people and is very friendly and smiley.
I've heard that this is just a stage and that it's especially bad when they're learning to walk. She can't walk yet, but will stand unaided for 30 seconds at a time and occassionally take one step to get to something to hold on to. So I guess it's safe to say that she's learning to walk.
(emphasis mine)

Oh mama, I could have written this part word.for.word. except our daughter just turned 14 months (not 15).... word.for.word. I swear!

I think it is totally normal and I do think it has to do with being on the cusp of a milestone (walking, getting new teeth maybe, learning more words/signs).... I think just keep responding to her needs, you are doing great
 

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It is totally normal. The more you meet her needs the quicker the phase will pass. Although it is definitely dependent on personality I also think that APed babies get over stuff like this more quickly than other babies.

Get a good carrier is you don't have one. You can easily cook dinner with a baby in a wrap or mei tei on your back. I also tend to carry my daughter for the first hour or so in the morning, while I am making breakfast and such. This seems to help in general with her mood and when she was younger it was a must to keep her happy (she is NOT a morning person).

You certainly do not need to put her in daycare to "help" her learn to be away from you. It would probably be detrimental at this stage and she will learn to be away from you in her own good time when she is ready. Some get there sooner than others. I made my dad stay with me the first couple days of kindergarten and I am perfectly normal now, just a bit of a late bloomer.

If you want to join a playgroup so that you and she can make new friends and have fun then I encourage you to do so. Don't be surprised if she just sits on your lap for the first couple meetings though and don't try to force her to interact with other kids.
 

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DD is 13 months and this all describes her as well. DS certainly went through (several) similar stages.

I think you pretty much *have* to pick them up. It's hard to walk away from them when they are clinging to your legs.
 

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i would agree that it's just a phase. ds was like this until he learned to walk. he just started walking a lot on his own a few days ago and already he's less "attached". he loves to explore with his new skill. he will still come back and tug on my leg when he wants to be held. i think that our AP lifesyle has helped making him more independent. he loves meeting new people and exploring new places. i say just keep doing what you're doing. it sounds like you're doing an awesome job mama!
 

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You have perfectly described my Life and I too am going NUTS!!!!!
My DD is 15 mo........I'm so happy to hear my DD isn't the only one doing EVERYTHING you wrote! AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH I too cannot pee. let alone actually put her down to do something that requires two hands....and on top of it I'm preg.........Oh heavens help us!

I 'm praying it's because she is learning to walk too....DD will walk but decides to take mama's hand ALL OVER her walking journey....She WILL not go by herself...And has a fit if I put her hand on something to hold her up!

She won't hardly even go to DH without a big fuss so I can actually go to the Bathroom for once by myself!

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Best of luck, you are not alone!
 
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