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Is it normal for my daughter to be so attention seeking?

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My daughter is 3 and usually is the center of my attention. About 3 months ago I started watching my sisters boys, one is 3 and one is 6 months. They've always played together very well (my daughter and nephew) until I started babysitting them all the time. My daughter is usually a very well behaved little girl. Although she is very independent and trys my patience sometimes, I am usually able to correct her behavior. Now, since I have been watching my nephews, her behavior has gotten increasingly worse. With that and the constant fighting between the two 3 year olds. I know to some degree that this behavior is a cry for attention. This behavior was making me lose my patience with her and even made me literally scream at her to leave me alone. Because of this I recently had to make the decision to stop watching my nephews and start spending more one on one time with her. I just would like to know, with all the mothers out there that are raising more than one child, #1.How can I not handle more than one child? #2 is there a way to help my sweet baby girl to adjust to having her cousins around all the time? And by the way since I stopped watching my nephews I have seen a very dramatic positive change in my daughter. I just feel that If my mom raised 4 why cant I handle it?

answers (1)

First of all, it's different when they're your own children. Second, part of it depends on the kids' ages. My husband I and decided to have our children close together in age (2 years or less) for a lot of reasons. The main reason was so that our kids could be close friends as they grew up and so that our daughter wouldn't remember being an only child. Our son was born when she was 18 months old and she's never had a problem sharing anything (food, toys, attention, etc.).Obviously, that doesn't help you a whole lot since your daughter is already three. The only thing you can really do is talk to her. Explain the situation, why you'll be having her cousins over every day. Tell her that while you have to give them attention it doesn't mean you love her less. Giving her more one on one time only reinforces the idea that she doesn't have to share attention, and that's the opposite of what she needs. When you watch your nephews do your best to have activities that include everyone. Play games and do activities that involve taking turns and sharing.Dealing with more than one child is a lot of work whether they're your own or someone else's. It just takes patience and some creativity.

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