MamaBear will tell you….
Sometimes…having a velcro kid is really really *really* draining.
But there is hope! Here's what happened to HS2.
Picture, if you will, the following.
HS1 and HS2 have a delightful office with the Twitter Budgies.
Each has their own desk and computer.
HS1, being more of a loner than HS2, loves watching YouTube videos. And sometimes, HS2 will stand in back and watch as well.
Well, this morning…HS1 politely asked HS2 *not* to watch; he wanted alone time by himself. A perfectly reasonable request, I might add!
But for HS2, it was like the kiss of death.
HS2 came over to me, very unhappy indeed. He told me,
"Mom, HS1 doesn't want me around!"
Somehow, my immediate desire to say, "and your problem is?" wasn't the right thing at all. 🙂
So instead, I sat him by my computer and told him:
"HS2, everyone has the right to be by themselves! Why do you insist on being next to HS1?"
and he said:
"Because I'm lonely if he's not next to me."
Interesting, I thought. So I then asked:
"But HS2, you need to learn to be comfortable by yourself! If you're not, you'll just come across as needy…you're a tremendous person, what bothers you about being alone?"
and he said:
"I just miss the family."
Hmmm. So then I quizzed him down about what would help him *not* miss the family, and we came up with:
Putting a picture of the family right next to the computer.
So! I printed one out, =HD1 and HD2 designed a fantastic frame for it, and we all presented it to him when he got back from Rec camp.
To say he was delirious with happiness is an understatement!
It really made his day.
So! If your child finds it difficult to be by himself, give him a keepsake and a picture of his family and tell him,
"You're never alone – your family is always in your heart."
And then put the picture right next to his favorite place.
Loneliness might not be entirely cured the first day, mind you….but seeing a visual reminder will *definitely* help for the long run.
When a child is lonely or otherwise is afraid to be by themselves, there's always a reason.
It might be a ridiculous reason to you, mind you…but it makes all the sense in the world to him.
Honor that. Have a sincere discussion that gets at the root of why your child cannot be by herself….and then address and fix the issue.
Now, I'm pretty sure that it will still take time to cure HS2's loneliness completely….but at least, the next time he comes to me, I'll be able to walk him over to his computer, point out the picture of his family, remind him how we're all in his heart…..
And I'll bet, he'll regroup beautifully.
PS – all of this happened in the morning! But in the afternoon, I encountered a parenting challenge with HS2 that honestly devastated me. Good news was, it all ended well! Bad news was, I learned that the only person I could rely upon for support….was me. Good news was, hey, I suppose I understood that all along. Stay tuned!