Why can't my child just play?

(13 Posts)
Dizzywhore Mon 21-Apr-14 14:32:28

She's almost 3 and never just plays on her own. We play these lovely little make believe games but on her own she just doesn't bother. She's loves her toys, the garden, her dollies but will not just play on her own, even for 5 minutes! It's so hard when I have house work etc to get on with. I feel so bad saying no mummy can't play right now. Will she grow into it? I'm about to have a baby and would love her to start going off to play on her own, even just for 15 mintes or so!

MrsDeVere Mon 21-Apr-14 14:40:23

Probably.
Some just take a bit longer than other.

I would say 3 is still quite young for playing on her own (although some children do).

I have 5 DCs and my 6 year old doesn't like playing on his own but my 4 year old was happy to do it from about 2.5.

She may be feeling a bit clingy because you have a new baby coming.

Dizzywhore Mon 21-Apr-14 14:50:15

All her little friends will play happily on their so I though it was just her. Hopefully it will come with age. She's always been like it I just think I'm noticing it more because I feel like crap and find it really hard to get off and on the floor now!

Paq Mon 21-Apr-14 14:58:51

She's totally normal and has the 6th sense of all toddlers where they can tell exactly when you sneak off for 3 minutes peace.

I used to involve mine in stuff I was doing or get out of the house at every opportunity. There were only so many times I could play Fireman Sam without going mad.

Dizzywhore Mon 21-Apr-14 15:44:00

At the moment it's hide and bloody seek! She'd play it 24/7 if she had the chance!

Cast1ststone Sat 03-May-14 16:44:27

Try some creative stuff with her. Ex. drawing,finger painting,coloring... She may just find it more fun to play pretend with you so she needs more hands on things to keep her stimulated for a bit. Ask her to draw mummy a picture or one for daddy. Maybe she wants to make one for the new babysmile She prolly gets bored by herself. Can you set up some play dates? maybe show her how to stack plastic cups and she can sit on the kitchen floor while you do your things in the kitchen. Just try to find some new thing she can do while in the same room as you until she feels more safe being alone.

mrstowers Sat 03-May-14 19:44:51

Great timing! A little playmate due soon. My DD was exactly the same until my DS was born. She absolutely adored him and even when he was a small baby she used to play imaginary games with him until he was old enough to toddle around after her playing.

Varya Sat 03-May-14 19:48:24

Our 17 month old will play happily with her toys all afternoon but does enjoy an adult joining in now and again. Great skill to have in my opinion.

LiberalLibertine Sat 03-May-14 19:48:46

Mines the same, she's 3 too, she will colour, paint, play dough, for as long as I'm doing it with her!

I just rope her into all the jobs I'm doing, it's annoying, but hopefully won't last!

Twoplusboys Sat 03-May-14 19:49:58

My eldest is like that too. He's 5 now and is only starting to as he's taken an interest in writing and coloring since starting school. The difference is mine has a four year old brother so a constant playmate. It's only when he's alone that he won't play.

Could you set an alarm to warn her you have work to do? So say play with her after breakfast for 20 mins then when the alarm goes off you have to clean for 30 mins etc.

fhdl34 Sat 03-May-14 19:51:56

You might find when baby arrives she starts doing it. My DD was 23 months when DS was born and when he got to about 2 months old, she suddenly started playing on her own. Sometimes shutting the door of whatever room she was in to shut out his crying.

Whereisegg Sat 03-May-14 20:06:52

My 7yo ds manages 10 minutes max unless it involves a screen sad angry

oobedobe Sun 04-May-14 18:31:03

Some kids are toy players and some are not. I have two kids, my 5 year old always wants some kind of interaction, especially when she was younger, it was; chase me, do puzzles, painting, watch this, do that etc - it was pretty tiring! She is good at imaginative play/dress up but most toys do not interest her (would rather play with a random scarf/pine cone/fluff that she finds rather than any of her lovely toys!) I could have saved a fortune!

DD2 however has amazed me by her ability to play nicely and appropriately with all our many toys, especially dolls, playmobil etc and she is not even 2 yet!

That said you should encourage your DD to spend some time amusing herself, they can all do it to some extent. You do need to ignore a bit and say mummy is busy, as she needs to learn she can't have Mummy do everything with her all the time. I am sure that allowing my DD1 to be 'bored' and not constantly entertained has taught her to use her imagination and playskills more than she would have otherwise.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now