Why does my son pull my hair when he's tired?
My 16 month old won't go to bed unless he has a handful of my hair in his hand. He doesn't do this any other time of the day. Even when he's asleep, he grasps for it. I have a sensitive scalp and it really hurts, but I'm not sure how to make him stop. Saying "no" and pushing his hand away doesn't work.
Have you tried replacing your hair (that he clutches) with something else for him to hold as he drifts off to sleep? Perhaps something that feels similar. It must be comforting to him to clutch your hair, even if it's not comfortable for you. Perhaps it's scary for him to drift off to sleep as it may seem to him that it takes him "away" from you. Keep trying different objects until he settles and chooses one as his favorite himself - perhaps a furry little blanket he can cuddle close to his face. Unfortunately if you squeal with pain each time he grabs for your hair, (it may be that very sound you make that tells him "you're there" for him) I'm not sure a replacement for your hair (for him to clutch instead) would help.
I'm sure he pulls your hair because it makes him feel safe. My niece would do the same thing to my sister. It's something he will grow out of. Telling him "no and that it hurts you" is not a bad thing. It might take him a while to catch on, but kids learn by repetition. Find something that will make him feel comfortable and safe. You could also try sleeping in a different position so that in the middle of the night he cant grab your hair or try tying your hair up.
I agree with teresa. My girl had the same issue. I got her a little silky cloth and started switching out with that just as night. My girl liked to pull it over and over, not hard just tugging but it hurt after a while and she always managed to grab my baby hairs! Whatever you do don't say no or else it becomes a game!
So apparently your hair has become his security blanket so to speak. Have you tried a doll with hair? You know subsitute the doll for your hair or let him choose something to take to bed. This way he feels like he's in charge of what he gets to take to bed. Then maybe you can get some less painful sleep.
Thanks for the tips, guys. I have tried dolls with hair, blankets, stuffed animals...just about everything. He still wants my hair. One person mentioned that he might just like the sound I make when I squeal in pain because it lets him know that I'm there, and that might be true. My son is VERY clingy and likes to always have me right there next to him.
any habit a child his age has is hard to break, my first had a serious addiction to her dummy,needing 4 or more around her in bed in case she lost one, we had a little ceremony to say goodbye to them as her teeth were being affected, but she still screamed for them for 3 days, specially at night, we needed to do tough love and stick it out, they say most habits for children are broken after 3 days, maybe remove yourself from the situation and let someone else take your son to bed for a few days,that way they deal with the screaming too, or cut off your hair and plait it for him to hold, i would struggle with having my hair pulled every night
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