I live in a different state as my goddaughters, but we do in person visits semi-frequently and weekly video chats. The girls, 4 & nearly 6, seem to really value their time with me, which I'm glad for.
However the last few visits I've noticed their almost too attached to being with me. They insist on going everywhere with me. They can't use the potty unless I come in with them so their not alone. If I go somewhere even for a few seconds without a goddaughter and she notices she will get upset and call that she wants to be with me. If I don't immediately come back there is a good chance the child will end up crying
At one point I ran upstairs to get clothes for the girls and the youngest realized I was gone and called for me. I told her where I was and told her to come up and she just set on the first floor crying that she didn't want to be alone. By the time I was able to get to her (I couldn't slip away immediately without literally dropping boxes everywhere) she was so upset it took a awhile to calm her, crying that she wanted to come with me and didn't want me to get clothes without her.
Meanwhile when the oldest goddaughter caught me slipping out after lunch to swap out child seats into my car so I could take them to a pool she came out bawling her eyes out and told me that "I love you too much to be away even for a few seconds"
I've also had both kids mildly upset at me because they woke up and I was not in the same room as them, having taken the other girl to another floor so we wouldn't wake up the sleeping girl.
I really love that they value me so much, but the need to be with them constantly is inconvenient at times. There are times when the two girls want to go different directions and I can't possible be with both girls at once which is getting difficult to handle knowing if I chase after either girl I risk the other getting upset that I 'left' them.
For the record they don't otherwise make excessive commands or cry to get me to do something, so I don't think this is mealy emotional manipulation, I think they really are upset about being without me. They also aren't as needy to be around their mothers, it seems to be a problem they have exclusively with me. They are in every other way very independent children, particularly the oldest.
So how can I handle their dependency on being around me all the time? Is there a way to get them more tolerant to being away from me briefly without getting so upset?