Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Separation anxiety squared

Image from here
I am struggling with the twins at the moment. They have a severe case of separation anxiety and seem to want to be cuddled by me 24/7. The fact that they have both been sick has only made matters worse and so, after a weekend of being sat on, fought over, fondled and craved, I am truly exhausted.

I couldn't get out the door and off to work fast enough this morning (to the dulcet tones of two kids screaming "Mummy")! I know. I am a dreadful mother, but it is true.

Separation anxiety has always been difficult for me to manage. Both Nugget and Doo Dah had it too at various stages of their toddlerhood, and I found it equally suffocating then too. But the fact that there are two two year olds in the house suffering with it. Two people pining after me (and me alone, the Geege doesn't cut the mustard), I am finding increasingly hard to handle.

I like my own space.

I need my own pillow.

I like the end of the day to end with a bit of paw-free time.

They cry when I leave the room. Whinge when I attempt to do the chores and not include them in every little detail. Have a tantrums if I speak to someone on the telephone (and dare not to hand the receiver over for them to have a chat to too). Dew Drop is the worst, but he has always been a Mummy hog. The Minx is a close second; an astute student of the master.

Doo Dah said to me yesterday: "How come I never get to sit on your lap anymore Mummy?". That would be because your brother and sister have taken up a permanent parking space Doo Dah.

I don't know how much more of this I can take. The Geege feels terrible (and rejected) but there is little he can do. It is just me on duty, all day and night. Exhausting. Thankless. Hopefully temporary?

Have your kids suffered separation anxiety? How did you get through it?


Mum on the Run said...

Honesty refreshes me!
Thank you.
I felt so guilty that I didn't necessarily want to be clung to every second of the day - that I would want to make a friend a cup of tea without a bawling mess underfoot.
I have no idea how to deal with it though - and X2?!!!!
Enjoy your work day. Sit, breathe, go to the toilet, make cuppas and anything else that takes your fancy.
I love how the definition of 'work' has turned on it's head!

Megan Blandford said...

I'm with you on this - I like my own space and I hate being clung to! Hope this phase passes very soon, and the kids are all well again even sooner. x

Cathy said...

My 5 year old still clings sometimes! It's frustrating!!! I love him to bits but I just want him to go on his merry way and play with his friends! He eventually does...and it has become a lot better as he's got older. Don't know what to suggest? run and hide?

Kelly said...

Sounds like you have your hands (lap) full. My son was very clings when he was little, as much as I love the cuddles it used to also drive me nuts. I felt like you exhausted and longed for my own space.

He is now almost 8yrs old and always says he loves me every day and I always get a hug. As your children get older, it does get easier the trick is surviving it now xo

DancingInTheRain said...

I was just thinking of this very topic. As I was cleaning the bathroom one handed, JJ on my hip occupying the other, I wondered how mothers with twins did it. If I had two that always wanted to be attached I would get nothing done - at least I have one spare arm!

It's all a phase, it's all a phase, it's all a phase ....

Mama of 2 boys said...

Oh thank you so much for this post! Not that you wrote it for me or anything, but it does make me feel a little less, well hopeless, after my day.
Both my boys suffer separation anxiety. I am dreading returning to work in a month and leaving my 1 year old in day care... all new experiences for me as I never left my eldest in day care.
I have also had a hideous day today, with a sick 3 year old and a crazy 1 year old, who won't nap, attacks everything at 100 miles an hour AND is very clingy.
The kind of day when I feel like a rate about a 2 out of 10 for mothering :o( Sheesh!
But you, with 4 children, including twins... I do feel for you. You are an amazing Mama :o) xo

1000 Homes of Happiness said...

oh, we hear you on this one. My little ladies...twinnies in particular are real mummy hogs. Some days work just seems a much easier option. Adore your honesty.

Hope you manage to break free....and enjoy some 'me' time soon. It is always sooooo much harder when they are sick.

Hope the twins are on the mend soon.


Anonymous said...

We are a family where everybody has their own space, and there is no co-sleeping. Sometimes I wish for more cuddles, but it does have its merits when bedtime comes, and I know my pillow will remain my own until 6am. So I am no help to you.
To me it sounds like you worry about not giving enough of yourself to each of your children. And perhaps you compensate by offering more than you'd like? Maybe you need to think about what level of comfort you are willing to give and is reasonable, given the circumstances, and then try to encourage everyone to enjoy their own space a little more.
I know it's terribly hard when everyone is sick. But if mama ain't happy, no-one's happy.
And I agree with the other commenters: it's so faux pas to admit that you aren't a cuddly family. We are not, but hey, it works for us and everyone sleeps through and it makes the days easier knowing we each get some time apart to rest and refresh at night. And I would give my life for my kids: my lap, all day? Not so much.
Good luck. xx

Anonymous said...

I've come back because I'm worried you might be offended by my comment. I just wanted to add that I think you're an amazing mama, and I think it would be OK if you reclaimed some of your own space. I think you can do this with grace, and with care and concern for all 4 kids. x

Jen said...

Both my kids have had days and weeks like this and I can't remember what I did to get through it but the one thing I know about parenting that everything is but a phase and it will in time pass and if not for this blog post in the future you might not even remember in years to come, I hope you find your way through it soon

Diminishing Lucy said...

My quote of the day the other day was "oh my God, I love you, but will you just bugger off and leave me in peace?"

Mine are clingy when they feel left out. When I am not present, physically or emotionally, they cling.

Self fullfilling at times...

Cate said...

Oh yep, there's nothing quite like a toddler hanging off your foot while you just carry on making dinner to really get the guilt going - now times that by two...
You poor thing. I know I said that the other day, but since there's two bubs I think I can safely say it at least twice :-)
Just remember, this too will pass...

and remember you reeeeeally love them (yes you do!)

Tat said...

My son was really bad, from 4 months up to about 18 months. If I left for two hours, he would cry for the entire two hours without me. It was hard at times, but I didn't mind too much, I felt very special. But I'm guessing by the third and fourth time the 'special' feeling loses its novelty.

Life In A Pink Fibro said...

Oh no. Poor you. I heard about the illness and the sickness and the rest, but this as well? All I can say is that this too shall pass. And hopefully very bloody soon!

Zoey @ Good Goog said...

It's so easy to get touched out. My toddler is in need of a lot of cuddles at the moment and with having a new baby its very easy to get to the end of the day and feel like I'm going to scream if one more person touches me.

Must be hard with two of them. Hopefully they grow out of it soon.

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