All You Need is Love

My three (and a half) year old daughter – A – has started hugging and kissing everyone in sight when it’s time for us to leave somewhere. She will hug and kiss her friend, her friend’s mom, her friend’s dad, her friend’s siblings, and anyone else who happens to be around. And then she has to hug and kiss them all again, and possibly AGAIN before we can leave.

When my husband leaves for work in the morning, she needs a hug and a kiss while she’s sitting at the breakfast table, and then when he’s at the door, and then when he’s in the doorway, and then after he closes the door, and again after he closes the door for the second time.

When my younger daughter – I – is going down for a nap (which happens twice a day) or when she’s going to bed for the night, A has to give her a hug and a kiss, and then again, and again and again and again and again and again…and maybe again.

When I’m leaving the house for any reason and not taking A with me, I get the same routine she gives her dad in the morning, except for I’m at the garage door instead of the front door.

This was all completely adorable and irresistible when it started about a month ago. I thought she was the sweetest, most darling creature on earth to be going to such lengths to show her affection for others. And she is truly a very loving and caring girl. However, there have been times recently when this behavior has drove me absolutely crazy (like when I is screaming and wants nothing more than to be put down in her crib and A is insisting that she kiss and hug her just one more time).

It’s an odd feeling to want your child to be less affectionate with others. I have spent 3.5 years teaching her that love and empathy are what she needs in her life and I truly believe that those two emotions could save the world. Honestly. All you need is love; the Beatles were right. But sometimes A has too much love to give. Raising children is such a strange and complex job. I don’t want her to think that hugging and kissing the people that she feels close to is a bad thing. I want her to express herself and I want her to know that nothing bad can come from love. And yet, she does take it over the top at times. 
I guess I could have much worse problems, right?

2 thoughts on “All You Need is Love

  1. I have heard that this is another phase that we have to look forward to (there are just so many of them!!). I can imagine how delicate this situation is. Thank you for posting about it as I am sure many people walk that fine line and will have insight to impart. I know that I will need guidance if we find ourselves in this situation with LadyBug!

  2. My mom used to tell me to stop clinging/hanging on her because I would always be trying to hug her and be near her, so you arent alone in your frustration haha. I am naturally overly-affectionate (minus those few years at Rochester when you knew me lol), so I get her behavior too. She may also tired of it:)

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