Is it normal that my baby doesn't like being held or cuddled?

Is it normal that my baby doesn't like being held or cuddled?

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Most babies revel in warm, close physical contact with their parents, so we expect to comfort them with holding, hugging, stroking, and rocking. However, some entirely normal infants don't find being held at all soothing. They reject — and even resent — such constriction and refuse to drop their heads sweetly onto adult shoulders or tuck their feet snugly under adult arms. Indeed, far from comforting and relaxing them, being held or swaddled makes them furious, and the more adults try to get a grip on them, the more they protest. Since your baby is actively pushing you away, it sounds like that's what's happening with her.

These babies usually prefer eye contact to cuddling, and talking to hugging. When your baby tries to escape from your arms, don't hold onto her or retreat to nurse your wounded feelings. Instead, put her on a bed or a rug and lean over her so she can study your face while you talk.

Babies love faces, and the ones who spend lots of time face-to-face (rather than face-to-shoulder, as cuddly babies do) often smile and "talk back" earlier than others. In fact, you may already be able to have long "conversations" with your baby: She makes a sound, you make one back, she "answers" you, and so on. This is a wonderful start toward talking, and a nice alternative to the cuddling you desire.

If you still long to stroke the back of your little one's neck and kiss her dimples, do it while she's happily occupied in her highchair or stroller, or while you're changing her diaper. That way she can accept your loving caresses without feeling imprisoned in your arms. If you also play with her fingers, bicycle her legs, and blow "raspberries" against her belly, she'll probably be delighted. Keep in mind that it's not you (or even your physical affection) that she rejects — it's feeling trapped.

Above all, don't take a totally "hands-off" approach to your "uncuddly" baby. Just as cuddly infants need to be looked at and listened to as well as being held and caressed, standoffish babies need some holding in addition to the looking and listening they prefer. If you don't insist on holding your baby, but keep offering your touch in a lighthearted, affectionate way — while dancing to music or swinging on a swing, maybe — in time she'll come to enjoy this kind of contact, too.

Watch the video: Why wont my baby sleep unless heshe is being held? (February 2023).

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