My 22-month-old is going through a phase of needing seemingly CONSTANT attention. He's always needed a great deal of attention, but this is even above and beyond what's "normal" for him. When I say clingy, I don't mean shy-clingy where he's afraid to leave my immediate presence. It's not about being afraid to leave mama, it's more about just wanting an audience or partner in everything he does.
It doesn't seem to matter how enjoyable, novel, or exciting the activity is that he's engaged in--if I leave, even just to go across the room and do something else, he's right there with me. I go out of my way trying to come up with new and fun things for him to do just to get a few minutes' peace, and he'll be really into whatever it is as long as I"m right there next to him, but as soon as I get up he's gone too, even if what I'm doing is definitely far less "fun" than what he was doing. He wants to be held and carried all the time. The latest (and the thing that's about to put me over the edge) is that he wants to sit on our laps for every meal! I have been able to get him to compromise by pulling his chair right next to mine so he can sit close but at this point I think if I have to eat every meal with a child on my lap I will go insane!
When I bathe or shower, he's not only right there in the bathroom with me (which is fine) but he's got to be hanging out next to the tub talking to me, playing with toys in the tub (even though I set up lots of fun toys just a few feet away).
He is saying lots of new words, and the new thing with that is that now he actually has the language to communicate that he wants me near. His favorites are: ca'y (carry me), pay (play with me), and sit (sit by me). If I am next to him but focusing on anything but him, I will hear "mama mama mama mama" until I pay attention to him. Or, he will be climbing on me, jumping on me, and if he's really frustrated, hitting or biting me.
This is a child who already gets a great deal of attention. He's my only child and we do everything together. He "helps" me with all my chores (whether I want him to or not!
) I"m not asking for extended time by myself (I try to get that during nap time), but just to be able to do something for 5 minutes without a monkey crawling up my back.
Anybody been there? How normal is this? I feel like it's probably normal, but I worry. My dh keeps telling me, "Well, he's attached...that's what you wanted." But I worry that maybe he acts this way because he insecure about his attachment to me. I don't really think it's about me though. If there are other children around or we are at someone else's house where there are really fun, new things to do, he will go and play just fine. It's just at home that he is like this. I think he is just an extrovert who needs *someone* with him at all times. But it sure ishard on mom!