107 answers

Should I Disallow My 5 Year Old Son from Sitting on My Lap or Giving Me Kisses?

Hi! I'm a divorced mom of a 5 year old, almost 6 year old boy. My son likes to give Mommy hugs and kisses every day, and if I'm sitting watching TV sometimes, about every other day, he'll ask to sit on my lap and cuddle for a couple of minutes. I didn't think this was a problem. My boyfriend decided to break the news to me that this is a problem, that it should have stopped a while ago. I asked him why, and he said he is just too old, that the cuddling and lapsitting will make him a Mama's boy, and that it is stunting his development. I don't want to damage my child. I thought that if my son comes to me to give me a kiss or to cuddle, that it was just healthy affection. My inclination is to let my son continue as he feels, and it will stop or reduce as he's ready. Now I am worried that I'm a bad mother, and that people will think I'm trying to keep my son like a baby if I allow him to sit on my lap? Is there an age when a child is too old to cuddle with Mommy?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks for the advise! My son has had issues with not progressing in some aspects, like taking a super long time for potty-training for example. I was angry (when I asked him why he thought that, he said "his age" which is no reason at all, we got in quite an argument) then I was worried that maybe I really wasn't aware of how kids develop at different ages and should be doing something different. Such a boo-hoo moment. My boyfriend does have three very well adjusted kids, 12, 10, and 9, so didn't just want to ignore what he suggested without any consideration. When he saw I was upset, he did try to console me. He said that he'd just been raised differently and doesn't know what was normal for my upbringing. He was raised by a "manly man" and to him kids don't normally want to cuddle daily; just mainly when they're hurt or sad, sometimes when watching a movie or something, but if they're looking to cuddle with Mama every day he thought that was codependant. Thank you for affirming that in this respect he's totally wrong. I'll also heed the "red flags" advise.

Featured Answers

Yuck, don't listen to him. Little boys need hugs, kisses and cuddles as much as little girls do! Keep giving them to him as long as he'll let you!

17 moms found this helpful

If my husband said something like this to me, he would have my handprint upside the back of his head.

15 moms found this helpful

Nobody tells me I can't hug and kiss my children. If there was more of it, the world would be a better place :-)

14 moms found this helpful

More Answers

Your boyfriend is not even your son's father. You aren't married, so he really doesn't have any business telling you how to parent. Even if you were married, a good stepdad knows not to intrude like that. His advise is bad; confident men are raised by loving, nurturing fathers, not those who give the message their sons are "wimps" if they show emotion, etc. He sounds rather controlling. Sorry that's not good news, but I'm concerned for you and your son.

18 moms found this helpful

Yuck, don't listen to him. Little boys need hugs, kisses and cuddles as much as little girls do! Keep giving them to him as long as he'll let you!

17 moms found this helpful

oh heck no! the boyfriend has to go!!!

My boys are 9 and 11 and I still get hugs and kisses from them - we even lay on the couch together to watch a movie or next to each other doing other things...

I would drop the boyfriend...he's dead weight and not giving me warm fuzzies!

17 moms found this helpful

Please don't take this the wrong way, but what has your boyfriend got to do with it?
I have a sinus infection, I could be a little on the bluntly honest side of things and forgive me if I come across that way, but seriously.
What is your boyfriend's issue? Is he jealous?
There is nothing wrong with kids being cuddly and affectionate.
ESPECIALLY boys. We want them to grow up to be affectionate adults and husbands and fathers, don't we?
I have a son. He's always been very affectionate.
I've been a single mom his whole life and he just turned 16. He's still a cuddler. He may be a mamma's boy, but he ain't no wussy. He's 6'1", weighs 200 pounds and has completed two junior law enforcement academies including boot camp with Marine drill instructors.
He's not too big yet to want to make popcorn and get in my bed with me to watch movies.
Obviously, there will come a day when that won't happen anymore, but if you're waiting for your son to show he doesn't want to cuddle with you, you might be waiting a long time.
And your boyfriend better get over it.
I have been single for 15 years by choice. Maybe it's a different dynamic because I never exposed my kids to men. I haven't met one yet I thought was worth the trouble. Anyway, if I did have a boyfriend and he tried telling me my 6 year old was too old to sit on my lap or kiss me, boyfriend would be OUT the door so fast he wouldn't remember which door he came IN.
End of story.
My daughter is 24. She has a baby of her own now.
You blink your eyes and your kids are grown and on their own.
I have two years left with my son in high school and if he wants to cuddle, I'm not going to tell him no.
My son will be grown and gone with a family of his own before I know it. As it should be. But no man is going to take this time with my son from me.
No man is going to tell me how to raise him.
My son has been recognized at City Council meetings for his responsibility and service to the community, he's received numerous awards and I don't need some man telling me I don't know what I'm doing when it's clear I've raised a healthy and well rounded young man.
Who happens to be very loving and affectionate.

I'm sorry for rambling, but really....I wouldn't let your boyfriend make you second guess yourself. Would you really consider telling your son he's too old to kiss and cuddle because that's what your boyfriend thinks? What will you say if boyfriend doesn't work out?
Honey...if you want a man in your life, he has to understand the package he's getting. A mommy and a son. And, if your boyfriend can't show affection for your son, for whatever reason, you have the wrong boyfriend.
Kids need love and affection.

Just my opinion.

16 moms found this helpful

I hope you have a good pair of rubber boots when your boyfriend's around, the bullsh*t sounds pretty deep!

Do you want to raise a son who is warm, caring and expresses his emotions, including affection? Or a cold uncommunicative SOB? What kind of Father do you want your grandkids to have? Because you're raising your grandkids dad.

16 moms found this helpful


NO, it is not a bad thing and just to be very honest with you, I think your boyfriend is completely wrong. What an unhealthy perspective! How long have you and your boyfriend been together? If it isn't very long, you may be on the road to dealing with lots of issues in your relationship (jealousy, controlling behavior, etc). Get out now, if that's the case.

I would see a therapist to help you "get healthy." I think it's very sad that you are questioning whether you should hug and snuggle with your child. I hope you don't choose to change your affection for him.

16 moms found this helpful

Wow, BF jealous much?!! Sounds like he is the one with mommy issues, and he is trying to drive a wedge between your son and you. Do not allow him to undermine your relationship with your son. Big red flag!!

You need to examine other things he may have said and done. I bet you will see a pattern of control and manipulation emerging, under the guise of caring about you or your son. Sounds like a good time to stand up for your child and yourself. If he can't accept your 5 year old's NATURAL and totally HEALTHY attachment to you, then BF must go.

16 moms found this helpful

Oh my goodness, really? Your son is fine. It sounds like he has a very healthy relationship with you, actually. Don't consider messing that up, because of an obviously jealous, insecure, backwards boyfriend. Your son is 6, he is not a 16 year old cuddling up in mommy's lap. He's a child. You are NOT a bad mother. Your boyfriend is a bad, misinformed boyfriend. . Keep doing what you are doing. Ignore his "advice." I'd drop him like a bad habit. He probably IS a bad habit!

I mean...you're asking if you should stop showing your child love!! How much does this man try to control you?

16 moms found this helpful

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