Hey baby? I'm sorry I haven't been the best lately.
Whaddya mean daddy?
I haven't really been there for you. I know you've needed me and you've been really upset with me. I'm not doing good and I wish I could do better for you. You deserve so much better.
You're probably mad at me and you have every right to be. I want to be the best I can be for you and I'm failing at being your daddy.
*hugs* I love you.
I love you too. I'm so scared of you leaving. I know I can do better but I--
Shh. I love you. You're the best daddy I can ask for. I can't expect you to always be there for me because I know you get busy. It's my fault for always getting upset when you can't be there. I just really miss you is all. There may be people better than you but I don't want them. I want you. I love you more than anyone else in the world, flaws and all.
Little Space is a confusing, sometimes chaotic place to be, mentally speaking. And it means that sometimes things you might recognize and be able to better verbalize when NOT in that headspace are sometimes more confusing, more of a general feeling instead of something you know how to say. As a result, here are some signs your little might be giving you that should help you understand or be aware that they might feel like they’re neglected, or at least that you aren’t engaging them in ‘little space’ and are just sort of ‘along for the ride’ (like when they want you to treat them little and you tell them ‘ok’ or something equally non-committal)
They whine without obvious reason It might sound like a whine, or generally unhappy sound, or it might be very specific to something you’ve heard before. Whatever the case, random, unexplained and poorly misunderstood whining is a good thing to note.
They want your attention, but seem angry or sad when they get it Usually a sign that they don’t feel you’re interacting properly, this almost always coincides with unexpected tantrums and general frustration. And it’s actually pretty reasonable… Imagine that you showed someone a thing REALLY important to you…your favorite movie, with favorite actor, while doing your favorite hobby/activity…and imagine they were texting and nodding and simply saying “OK” the whole time. That’s how this feels. And NOW you know why it upsets most littles. Probably almost ALL animals.
They go distant The thing is…most caregivers are intense, hard-working people with a LOT of love to give. And they’re STILL less loving and affectionate than most littles. So when your little suddenly changes, stops calling, texting, chatting, skyping, or cuddling…you either f***ed the heck up in some very specific way, or they feel ignored and no longer believe it matters. It’s ALSO completely possible they’re depressed, anxious, sad, tired, or just low on emotional/physical energy…but it’s always important to figure it out when someone (particularly your little) changes in personality and focus quickly or suddenly
Glitter slime: Starch Water Glitter glue (pick your favourite colour!) Mix it well and play!
Foam Paint: Shaving cream Glue Food colouring Mix it up in a bag, cut the tip open, and paint away!
Fireworks in a glass: Food colouring Warm water Any kind of oil Fill ¾ with water add in drops of food colouring (any colours you like!) Add the oil and watch the magic!
Puppets: Old socks Cotton balls Sewing needle (Caregivers only!) String Scissors (Caregivers only!) Cut one sock to make 2 little tubes (use the toe part its easier), fill with cotton and sew to a big sock, fill big sock with cotton and sew shut. Cut out eyes hair etc and sew on. Have a puppet show!
“I’m so proud of you!” Littles, I’ve found, don’t hear this very often. It’s sad, but true. You should be proud of your little one nearly all the time! Even for little things like eating or showering, if your little suffers from depression, those are hard things to do! Even if they don’t, taking care of yourself should be praised!
“Really! I’m so proud of you!” Because sometimes they won’t believe you when you say it.
“Thank you for…” It’s important to remember to say thank you to your little one, as caregivers, we sometimes forget to be grateful.
“I love seeing you in little/space!” Often times, little ones have at one point or another been called the dreaded word: “annoying”. Do not ever, ever, EVER call your little annoying, but especially don’t when they are in little space. Little space is a sacred, innocent place that should be cherished and nurtured. Littles are very vulnerable in little space. The smallest words cause the biggest harm. If you think a little is “annoying” in little space, YOU ARE NOT A CAREGIVER. I could go on a rant about this, but I won’t.
“I’m so happy to be your Mommy/Daddy/Big/Caregiver.” Littles often feel like they themselves are burdens on we caregivers. It’s up to us to remind them, often, that we love doing this too! This relationship benefits us! Taking care of them makes us feel wonderful! We do so because we love to!