Alright, a brief background. My step son is 5 years old, starting kindergarten in the fall. His parents divorced about two years ago, they share 50/50 custody. His mother gets him Thursday evening - Sunday, the 'fun weekend days' if you would. While we get him Sunday evening - Thursday. All of us work. His parents work normal Mon-Fri schedules with weekends off, while my hours fluctuate. He goes to daycare 6:30-4:30
Being a child of divorce myself I can understand wanting to go to the fun house all the time. The both of us are working most days when we have him and don't get to go out and have adventures, it's pretty routine and boring at our house. He's started attention seeking behavior sometime last year. He's not starved for attention or ignored or anything of the sort but we've deduced that it may have something to do with his parents having new significant others in their lives. We still play with, do activities and spend time with him once he gets home from daycare and dinner is made and then we will do something as a family until bedtime.
Lately however he's begun crying over the smallest things, usually followed by a 'I miss mom' or 'I want to go to moms' I've begun trying noting when this behavior occurs and it's usually after he's told to do something he doesn't want to do or told he cannot have or do something he wants to or bedtime, it's become a nightly bedtime ritual for him to be sitting on the couch crying that he misses his mom after he's been put to bed.
He's never behaved like this before, I'm trying to figure out a way to curb the behavior so he doesn't begin thinking he can cry and get his way or that crying is a venue for more attention, but not by making him think that it's not okay to cry or express his feelings. It hurts his father when he does it, the constant need to be a good parent (and yes that subconscious need all parents of divorce need to be the 'favorite' as well) We are pretty sure it's another attention getting ploy or an attempt at manipulation as it only happens when he doesn't get his way. Any thoughts or tips would be greatly appreciated.
A forgotten bit of information, aside from his new behavior he's a good kid, well behaved as a 5 year old boy can be, wants to make his parents happy, does what he's asked with a smile on his face, very very smart kid sometimes it's easy to forget he's only five.