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domingo, 26 de enero de 2014

On kisses and other displays of affection

You can imagine how delighted I was this week when my 13-month-old son kissed me for the first time. It was totally unexpected and spontaneously and at the beginning it took me aback. His sister might have been past 2,5 years when she learnt to kiss. I first thought it a coincidence but after three clear attempts at putting his lips on my cheek and making a little noise it was clear to me. In the previous weeks he had been doing some biting instead. I wonder now whether he was practicing. How sweet this little dude is!!
We like snuggling up and are all sort of loving but I clearly see differences between my children in this sense. Marina is pretty much her own and definitely introverted. She often refuses to be kissed, has very seldom kissed anyone but her parents, and we totally respect that. The fact that we don't encourage (let alone force) our children to kiss anyone, not even relatives, might be a bit of a contrast when we meet relatives who do, which happens once or twice a year. Someone may think we are raising unfriendly, unsociable children but I really believe it is a way to show them to trust themselves, their sense of safety and comfort. This is very important to me.
Marina's displays of affection tend to be shy so I had a secret feeling of joy the other day when matter-of-fact and out of the blue she declared "I like Cristina Coll, Irene (both friends of mine), you and Mazda (invented character) very much".

2 comentarios:

  1. Those first kisses are so sweet! Elliot also started giving kisses much earlier than his sister, and he gives them freely and often.

    I am in total agreement with you on respecting children's choices when it comes to showing affection or not. I feel like displays of affection, as Marina's sweet words to you, are so much more special when they're given freely and spontaneously anyway. I'd take one unprompted kiss over ten requested ones any day!