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My 3 year old doesn’t like me and I’m heartbroken

From toddlers to school children, children go through all sorts of changes depending on their development. Sometimes they push you away when you ask for hugs and kisses, other times they want to cuddle you at the most inconvenient times.

But that’s the exciting thing about children: they are unpredictable. Children often have a preferred parent at different times of the day.

This may depend on what they need at the time – but this a parent on Reddit says she’s heartbroken because she thinks her three-year-old doesn’t like her.

In the post she explained her situation: “My daughter is 3 and will be 4 in a few months. I’ve posted a lot of advice here about my toddler, I really need a therapist, I’m doing my best, I really am, but I have always feeling like a mess.

“It’s been bad for two weeks since we adjusted the sleep schedule. She gets so angry and mad and I think it’s because she’s sleepy, but she manages to sleep about 9 to 10 hours at night, plus a nap that’s already 1 to 2 hours long.

“However, her sleep isn’t the best. We’ve been waking up a lot at night lately. When she’s angry, she’s especially mean to me (mom). She will say, ‘Go away’, ‘This is not your home vacation’, ‘I don’t want my mom and dad’, etc.”

She further explained that although her daughter was naughty with her father, it wasn’t nearly as bad as it was with her.

“It’s like she yells at me and says mean things when she’s angry about something. She also hates it when I check on her when she’s hurt. Suppose she stubs her toe and says, “Ow, I say, “Oh, are you okay?!” And she’ll scream No!! And run away from me and want daddy.

“Say daddy will hold her and she will just look at me and watch my reaction. I tried to change my reaction because I thought maybe it was too big, but she gets so mad when I ask if she’s okay that she would want anyone in the world but me,” she wrote.

The mother then added that when she went to dress her daughter the day before, she said “No, I want daddy” and tried to throw her away.

She even told the mother not to come into the room. The situation got so bad that she “broke down yesterday and today and cried so much” and even started Googling behavior problems.

But she also explained that she calls out to her when she is scared or wants to play. However, when she gets angry, she is like a punching bag.

“I’m starting to feel like she just doesn’t like me. Of course we try to discipline and say, please don’t shout, I won’t play along if you behave like that. My husband gets very strict and says we should treat mom with kindness, but I feel like that’s a big reaction and she STILL does it anyway!

“I want to stay in bed and cry all day, but of course that’s not possible. If I even try to go for a walk alone, the toddler gets angry and cries and wants to come with me. I’m so sad. I guess I’m not strong enough to be a parent, I’ve always been particularly sensitive. I feel like a failure,” she concluded.

Redditors were quick to reassure the mother that this is a phase and many children go through it.

One person said: “It’s so hard but you just can’t take these things personally. It is 100% developmentally appropriate and never means your child doesn’t love you.

“Children at this age have ALL big feelings and are just learning to express them and practice independence. Learning how to self-regulate your own feelings that arise in these situations could be a good place to start. Dr. Becky on IG/her podcast has lots of good tips.”

Does my child actually hate me?

Rachel Melville-Thomas, child psychotherapist and spokesperson for the Association of Child Psychotherapists (ACP) says: “Preschool children lead intense lives. It is common for them to manage the world, the family and all their feelings, dividing everything into good and bad, beautiful and terrible. That’s why you might find yourself on the receiving end of “I hate Mom” ​​or “I just want Dad to do my shoes.”

“It’s also a way to control a big world in which they have very little say – so they try to flex their independence and autonomy muscles by expressing strong opinions. It’s important not to take any of this personally, as their feelings can and will change dramatically.

“During this time, 2- to 4-year-olds are also exploring their identity and gender and can identify intensively with one parent or the other. If parents are the same gender, toddlers will recognize personality differences and go through phases of deciding what they want to be like.

“If you can remain calm, rephrase their words: “So that you have great feelings for me right now,” and explain why they would love the other parent very much, but right now, I’m sorry, they’re holding on to you! ”

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