A Mom’s Choice Not to Cuddle With Her 11-Year-Old Stirs Controversy
Navigating parenthood comes with a lack of strict rules, leading many parents to establish guidelines they believe are suitable for their children. Nonetheless, a mom’s choice to stop cuddling with her 11-year-old daughter has stirred up a debate among people.
She shared the reasons behind her decision.
I’m a 37-year-old mom, happily married to my 38-year-old husband, and we share the joy of parenting our 11-year-old daughter. Now, our little one is on the petite side for her age, and that often leads to her being treated like a younger child.
She loves hopping into either mine or my husband’s lap, especially during those cozy moments on the couch or in a chair. Lately, I’ve been thinking about whether she might be outgrowing these cuddle sessions, and perhaps I’m unintentionally causing her discomfort by allowing it to continue.
Yesterday, she tried to snuggle up as usual, and I told her that she’s too old for that now. She got really upset, went to her room, and closed the door. Since then, there’s been a noticeable tension between us. When I hugged her goodnight, she didn’t hug me back. It’s left me feeling quite guilty, realizing I might have hurt her feelings, but I can’t shake the thought that she might be reaching an age where sitting on my lap is becoming inappropriate.
Many people had a different opinion on this matter.
- “She’s not going to want to cuddle you much longer. You may have a year left. And you’re throwing that time away instead of cherishing it.” imothro / Reddit
- “There’s nothing wrong with directing a child towards more age-appropriate behaviors or expressing that something is no longer comfortable for you. That’s part of helping a child grow up. But you do need to redirect them to a behavior that is appropriate (because they need to be taught, they don’t automatically know) and reinforce that while your relationship with them is changing, your love for them is consistent. If you told her to ‘Get off’ with no warning, it’s no wonder why she perceived that as rejection and is now completely confused as to what sort of physical affection is ok or will get her snapped at.” Meemaws_BearCheese / Reddit
- “What is important is that you sit her down and explain that you still love her and it’s not a punishment, cause she might see it that way. If you aren’t comfortable anymore with it then explain you just want hugs now. But don’t speak for others of how they want to express their love.” whateverisstupid / Reddit
- “My 23-year-old greets me almost every morning with a hug and I cherish those moments. Never, ever pass up an opportunity to show your kids affection in whatever way they need.” sittinbacknlistening / Reddit
- “I work at a nursing home. We have a 78-year-old man who comes to visit his 99-year-old mother every week. She has dementia and they hold each other and they both light up. You never outgrow the need for love and affection from your parents.” Virtual_Eggplant_355 / Reddit
- “That is your prerogative to make choices about your own personal space. However, don’t make it seem like it’s your daughter who is being the problem here. Instead, simply say that she is not too old to sit on her parents’ lap and cuddle and she is allowed to want to do that, but she simply has to ask permission first. Her parents love her, but sometimes they want their laps to themselves, you know. This is a great time to teach her about consent. And consent goes both ways too.” Ok-Swordfish-9494 / Reddit
When you’re a parent, it’s often unclear whether the decisions you make are the right ones. If you’re interested in the experiences of other parents, you can find more in this article.