Daddy's Little Girl - Not

Updated on April 02, 2008
T.B. asks from Traverse City, MI
4 answers

My daugher is 3 and my hubby works out of town M-R so I'm basically a single mom during the week. At times he'll be home for months at a time be lately he's had this schedule. I work full-time and she and her 11 month little brother go to a great home daycare. The problem is during the week it's only me so I take care of all her needs. When daddy comes home she is excited to see him and runs to him and hugs him but suddenly she turns into a huge momma's girl and insists that I do everything, she suddenly can't get dress by herself, or go to the bathroom, blow her nose, pick up toys whatever it may be that she does on her own during the week. She becomes this helpless whining mess. After being alone with them all week by Friday evening I've had enough so it creates a lot of tension at our house. If we go anywhere my husband can not do anything for her otherwise she will throw a fit. I have to do it all, get her dress, put on her coat, comb her hair, put her in the car. It drives us all crazy. I ask or tell her to have daddy do it and she has a melt down. Now she will sit and read books and play with daddy but everything else must come from me. Any suggestions how to break this terrible cycle we are in?

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So What Happened?

So it's been 3 weeks or so now and we tried a new thing. Friday night when my hubby got home he spent time with my daughter but when we put her to bed we told her that tomorrow Daddy would be in charge so if she needed anything she would have to ask Daddy. Saturday came and this worked like a charm, at first she wasn't to keen on it but he was able to get her lunch, take her to gymnastics, give her a bath, put her to bed and get her snacks without any problems. It was nice for him to have the involvement with her and it was a really nice break for me. If she asked me something I'd just have to remind her that Daddy was in charge. By the end of the night she did ask me when I was going to be back in charge, that was pretty cute.

I had surgery last week and my mom came to help out and so we told my daughter that while mommy was sick in bed Grammy was in charge and that worked out great also.

Now every Saturday, Daddy is in charge, she still has her moments but it's nice that Daddy is able to do more things for and with her.

Thanks for input.

More Answers



answers from Detroit on

Just a bunch of random thoughts...

There are many possibilities as to why she is "needing" you and some of it probibly has to do with the fact that all of a sudden your attention has to be split with another person... Even if it wern't her daddy, she would probibly get clingy if someone else dropped in for weekends.

I would say to have a discussion with hubby. So he knows what to prepare for. Arrange a weekend/ couple days trip for YOU/ or them!!! You keep the baby to make it easier on him... SHe may not realize that daddy can take just as good care of her as you can. ... Then she has noone to lean on BUT HIM... And it gives them bonding time... Don't know what they would do, but they should do it TOGETHER... No mommy interference. ANd don't call to talk to her every night.

Or it could just be HER. My 6 yr old although she loves her daddy, will chose me helping her over him. Always has... My 6yr DD and 3 yr DS still fight over who's gonna sit by ME on the sofa. No body worries about where daddys sitting, but who gets to sit by MOMMY. You are her support system during the week. She may feel that he's "taking you away" from her for some reason or other.
When he is there plan out 30 min or so that its just you and her time. Make it story time. Hubby wrangles baby... You and her. I know on weekends I try to soak up as much hubby time as I can get, and he's here thru the week... It could be that she's just feeling left out...



answers from Benton Harbor on

Just stop doing it for her. She's old enough to know the difference, obviously, because she's playing you like crazy! LOL I bet one time of walking out the door without her and she'll begin to get a very clear picture. But don't be afraid to express disappointment with her regression. While you are helping her with her coat, tell her "It's too bad you aren't old enough to do this yourself, because I thought you were almost old enough for a _____" (fill in the blank with something she has wanted). I have found that *sometimes* its beneficial to play my kids games right back to them and let them initiate the behavior change.




answers from Detroit on

Sounds like she wants/needs attention. Let her know during the week that when Daddy gets home, he is going to make her lunch, help get her dressed, etc. Try and prepare her. Start with Daddy helping her with one thing, then praise her for being good. If she starts to have a meltdown, you and Daddy need to walk away from her. She needs to know tantrums are not acceptable and will not get her the attention she wants. Good luck!



answers from Saginaw on

First of all I want to mention that I love the way you explain your stepkids... that is beautiful!

Ok, my husband works some really long hours, 5 to 6 days a week with his business and work. So we have learned that for our daughter to want to spend time with him I need to remind her that he is thinking of her and he needs to call her to check in and tell her about his day and how much he loves her. When he is home I try to leave at least once a week so they get some one on one time... or have them go and do an errand together (library, store, gas station whatever, just time together)

Change is hard on all of us and having someone you love not be with you all the time is hard on you and your daughter.
She probably doesn't understand why he isn't with her, on the upside, my daughter LOVES her calls from her Daddy :)


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