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to NOT get up with the kids at 7am?

(29 Posts)
groundhogmum Sat 20-Aug-11 09:24:49

My DP works shifts and often finishes work after 11pm, I stay at home with our 3 DC, aged 6, 4 and 2.5yrs. The kids get up most days between 6.30 and 7am, the 6yo opens the stairgate and they all trundle downstairs and pop the tv on.

My DP insists that no matter how early they rise I should get up with them. I feel that no harm will come to them if I stay in bed and leave them to it - I get up around 8am on a "day off" where I have no school/appts to be at.

Is this unreasonable? Our kitchen downstairs has a lock on it that none of them can undo and therefore they only have access to the lounge and the downstairs loo. Obviously, I am aware of the children being up, can hear them downstairs and just "doze" until my alarm goes off at 8.

What does everyone else do? Am I being lazy/neglectful by not getting up with them immediately? I just don't see the problem with letting them go downstairs without me for an hour or so, after all its not like I am sleeping all day while the kids run riot downstairs!

Grateful for all opinions!

purpleturtle Sat 20-Aug-11 09:28:36

I think mine were getting their own breakfast at those ages! They do pop in and out of our bedroom asking questions - so I suppose your DP might not need that aspect of it, but if you can train them not to do that, then definitely YANBU.

Sariah Sat 20-Aug-11 09:30:06

Probably not the best person to reply as my 3 year old and 2 year old often head downstairs and turn on the telly. They get through 2 sets of stairgates. One Saturday morning a few weeks ago my dh heard noises outside and looked out our front window and there the two of them were cycling up and down on the road outside in their jammies. Ds was on a lovely pink tricycle. They had found a key for the window and climbed out that, we found the key in the garden later that morning. Luckily we live in a quietish estate.

Trifle Sat 20-Aug-11 09:30:12

I cannot see any reason why you should get up given those circumstances. I used to let my two do that from ages 2 and 4. For some reason those early mornings on their own were very bonding, something private and quiet just for the two of them.

FabbyChic Sat 20-Aug-11 09:31:27

Why can't he get up with them at the weekend, why is it only you that should?

I think you should stay in bed, if they need anything they will come get you or tell you.

groundhogmum Sat 20-Aug-11 09:32:20

I have a friend whose 6yo and 4yo make their own breaKfast, I suppose its the 2.5yo he worries about! If she was the only one I probably wouldn't leave her to go downstairs alone, but with the older ones she is fine.

DP just says its my job to get up with them, its not about them coming in and out of our room as they don't really do that, its more a safety thing, but I dont follow the 2.5yo around the house all day and I let them play upstairs whilst I am downstairs so i don't see the difference! Glad to see I am not the only one who does this smile

ggirl Sat 20-Aug-11 09:32:27


MrsBuntyCuldeSacPariah2 Sat 20-Aug-11 09:33:25

I think it sounds fine. It sounds like your house is safe and your DCs are quite happy watching TV. Presumably your oldest DC would come and get you if worried? I wish I could do this with my three, my middle DC (aged 3) starts the day at 5.30am but I would not trust him downstairs on his own. He knows how to unlock doors, and is very determined, busy and needs close supervision (will not just sit and watch television)! Thankfully the other two sleep a bit later. I've resigned myself to early starts really and just get on with some jobs while the house is relatively quiet!

WilsonFrickett Sat 20-Aug-11 09:33:40

I'm just up and DS decided that 7am would be a good time to get up today. I quite happily let him play, however in our old house probably wouldn't have as I wouldn't have been able to hear him. Now we're in a modern flat, there's really only a few inches of cardboard walls separating us so he's fine on his own smile

By the way OP - your DH insists shock?

groundhogmum Sat 20-Aug-11 09:34:25

DP works very odd shifts, only gets one weekend a month off. He does 12 hour shifts, sometimes working 6 til 6, others working 11 til 11. Obviously when he is on lates, he needs to sleep in a little the next day. Even on his days off, he is usually recovering from the previous shift so I don't get lie-ins, that's why I have decided to start taking them and the disagreement has occurred!

Whatmeworry Sat 20-Aug-11 09:34:57

Teach the 6 yo to make the tea grin. Yanbu so long as the area is safe and the 6 yo knows to call you if anything is wrong.

bea Sat 20-Aug-11 09:35:04

Mine dc3 (10, 7, 4) have been doing this since dd1 was 8... many a time have me and dh trundled downstairs to find the sofas turned into a 'boat' (pushed togethr to face each other!) and rice krispies scattered all over the floor (they were playing 'farm' and ds1 and dd2 were the 'chickens'... kriepies being the corn... naturally (gp have a farm!))....

so no! getting up at 8pm is very very reasonable... !!!

groundhogmum Sat 20-Aug-11 09:36:03

By insists, I mean he is adamant not that he makes me grin.

purpleturtle Sat 20-Aug-11 09:36:07

"My job to get up with them"? Your DP is being VVVU, IMHO. My DH is reading this over my shoulder (we're still holed up in bed while DC watch a DVD and build Lego downstairs), and DH asks: Why is it your job to get up with them, and when do you have a day off?

(My DH is a keeper. grin)

foreverwino Sat 20-Aug-11 09:37:14

Your dp sounds like a mysogynistic arsehole. Kick his butt out of bed and tell him to stop being such a lazy git.

You sound like you'd be better off as a single mum.

honeymom Sat 20-Aug-11 09:38:13

Mine get up and get there own breakfast. My youngest is 2.5 she is fine. If you trust them then I don't see the issue. I'm always prepared to sacrifice extra cleaning up for a lie in. You dh is giving a lame excuse it sounds like he works hours that are fine to get up if he has an issue with it.

MrsBuntyCuldeSacPariah2 Sat 20-Aug-11 09:39:18

Maybe a bit extreme, foreverwino?

acatcalledbob Sat 20-Aug-11 09:43:21

My DD1 (nearly 7) slept in this morning but DD2 (nearly 3) woke up and went downstairs by herself. I was 15 minutes behind her but by the time I got there, she was fingerpainting the walls with her feet ....

bonkers20 Sat 20-Aug-11 09:43:36

I'd be mad at my DH for insisting it was my job. Sod off! Even if he was right, surely you should be having the discussion with him and not with MN.

You know youre kids best. If they're safe and happy why do you need to be there?

I do let my 2.5 year old downstairs by himself while I dose/read/drink my tea.

OriginalPoster Sat 20-Aug-11 09:50:40


You should be up at least an hour before the rest of the household, to light the fires, and sweep the front step, before getting started on breakfast preparation, starting the bread making and emptying the chamber pots. All whilst teaching the children their alphabet and tines tables.

Your dh is right you are a lazy slattern, and should respect his views as head of the household.


SchrodingersMew Sat 20-Aug-11 09:55:57


My Gran works 12 hour nightshifts and comes in and sleeps for 4 hours and gets up and does everything else she needs to do or goes out.

I've worked longer than 12 hour shifts with Fibromyalgia and didn't need days to recuperate.

In fact, just about everyone else in the working world manages 12 hour shifts fine.

Why the hell should your DH be any different?

Tell him you get up with them every other day and they are his kids also so it is his job to get up with them when you have days off!

SchrodingersMew Sat 20-Aug-11 09:57:04

And btw, when I said about my Gran doing 12 hour shifts, coming home and having a 4 hour sleep and going to do what ever she has to do. She also goes back out the same night for another 12 hour shift.

LiegeAndLief Sat 20-Aug-11 09:57:08

I would keep it up.

I can remember that when I was 8 and my brother was 6, we would get up quietly, play downstairs and wait to hear my dad whistle. That was our queue to make them coffee (although my brother wasn't allowed to use the kettle or carry the cups). We then went back downstairs again until they had finished a leisurely coffee and sauntered downstairs.

Two years later, we had progressed to going out on our bikes to get the Sunday papers.

I have no idea how they trained us to this extent. So far I am failing miserably with my own dc.

Meglet Sat 20-Aug-11 10:04:34

yanbu. Sometimes mine are pootling about before me and head downstairs. They can't turn the tv on, the kitchen has a stairgate and cupboard locks, the door keys are out of their reach etc. The house is tiny so I'd hear a crash or a holler if something happened.

I feel that if I spring out of bed the moment they are up they will take it as a sign to get up earlier and earlier. Today they were up at 7:15 (civilised) and I made them pancakes at 7:45.

My XP never, ever got up with the kids. He didn't even know what they had for breakfast.

eleanorwish Sat 20-Aug-11 10:10:05

I don't see anything wrong in letting them get up by themselves. My 2 do it occasionally. One Sunday morning I got up and my DD proudly announced that she and DS had had something to eat. When I asked what, she said 'Jelly & cheese!' (that's all they could reach in the fridge!) They were 6 & 3 at the time

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