You’re probably wondering what’s been happening on the blog recently. I haven’t posted in what feels like ages.
The reason for this is simple: I haven’t really felt in the mood to do so. Loads of things have been happening, but very little I have felt I wanted to share. We’ve had feeding issues, feeding successes, sleep issues, sleep successes, chickenpox, starting running, the terrible twos, blocked drains and many other things, both good and bad.
But what has been constant throughout all of this has been my relationship with Olivia. We’ve always been aware that she has been heavily reliant on me. She always got a little upset if I went away without her and she used to have problems getting to sleep without me sitting with her.
However somewhere along the line something went wrong. She has become so heavily dependent on my presence that it is impacting on pretty much every aspect of our lives. It is putting a real strain on the relationship between her and my wife, which is doing no one any favours. She feels she has little in the way of relationship with Olivia at the moment, which is heartbreaking. I feel though that she does indeed have a very good relationship with her and when it is allowed to flourish, it is a lovely thing to see. But, in my mind, it is actually my relationship with Olivia that is the problem one. Or maybe it’d be more accurate to say it is her relationship with me that’s the issue. It is so all encompassing that there’s little room left for anyone else when I’m around. And because I can’t go anywhere without her, I’m always around.
What do you mean you can’t go anywhere without her, I hear you ask? A good question. If I go anywhere without her, it creates a horrible breakdown. Not a tantrum but a real heartbreaking upset little girl. So, because we haven’t actually had to fix it, we haven’t done much about it. In hindsight we’ve been a bit weak in that respect.
At this exact moment in time though, it feels like it is reaching critical mass. Today it stopped my wife seeing her friends, because someone had to stay at home with Emily in case she is about to come down with chickenpox (we don’t want to infect anyone), but we really wanted Olivia to see her friends after being quarantined while she had the pox. My wife easily could have gone with her and I say at home, but that would never have gone down.
But it’s going to have to. We have to break this. It’s not doing anyone any good. Me included. I need some space. I need to be able to go to the toilet myself. I need to be able to go and buy new clothes myself. I need to be able to nip to the shops myself. I also need to know that my wife can go out with Olivia and have a nice time.
So as of right now, we plan to start weaning her off of me. Thanks to what was a strikingly obvious statement from a friend, which I had never considered, I have to be the “bad” one and go out while leaving Olivia in the house with her mum, so that once she eventually calms, she can have a nice time with her, instead of her mum “taking her away” from me and possibly being labelled as the mean one by Olivia. She needs to know she can have a nice time with other people without me being there. I will always come back. Always. But she needs to learn that.
I will post how we get on, although I don’t know when that will be, I guess it depends on how long it takes and whether or not it breaks us!
Please cross your fingers for us