To take DS's toys to the charity shops without him knowing??(88 Posts)
I live in a 2 bed flat with 3yo DS and 2mo DS. Our flat has been getting smaller and smaller over the years with an influx of toys at Christmas and birthdays and also clothes etc for the boys.
I am sick to the back teeth of tripping over toys etc and it came to a head today when I tripped over a toy and fell into a chest of drawers and promptly burst into tears as I'm so fed up of my house being a bloody obstacle course and bursting at the seams.
DH has been wanting to get rid of a lot of older DS's plastic tat i.e. a car garage that is rarely played with, a bubble car that he used to love but is huge in our place! Also a jcb ride on thing amongst other things. I've always said no as they're his toys but it's ridiculous now and I'm ready to do a big clear out when he's at nursery without him knowing.
YANBU. If I didn't do this DS would still have every single toy he's owned since babyhood. If he sees them sitting in the hallway ready to go to the charity shop he takes them back because 'it's my favorite toy and I've been looking for it everywhere' so I sneak them out when he isn't looking
Why don't you try to involve him?
I know he's three you'll have to explain it to him in an age appropriate way/ make it into a fun game: exchange 20 old your for one brand new one, helping other children (or whoever your chosen charity helps).
It's your choice to make this a sneaky intervention or a fun learning experience.
Can you put them in a cupboard/under the bed for a week or two? I'd stealthily remove one or two things a day, stash them, and then if you get no complaints in a week or two he's forgotten and you can hoof them.
Mind and give them to a charity shop and not to friends though. I took my 4yo DTs to see my friend and her 2.5yo last week and they were like "hey mummy! Look! They have a Ninky Nonk just like ours!" No shit wee one, really? Just like it?
Is there any way you can sell them? There are big children's clothes and toys sales here,Nct sales etc where you get a percentage of the sale.
Or donate to a local nursery or preschool. Ours is desperate for toys.
It's the only way we do it in our house. Dd would argue that the doll she hasn't looked at in 2 years is her most favourite toy and she will cry forever if it goes. It's kinder on everyone to do it secretly!
I did a big cull just before dd2 was born 4 months ago and she hasn't once asked for anything that went.
Bear in mind that hoarders often cite "mum used to bin my stuff without warning me" as a trigger for their problems. That's as good a reason as any for a phased removal or full consultation.
I'm only just starting this process now as I have three sons a total of five years apart, so everything has always been in use. I'm now officially allowed to retire "baby toys" nobody plays with any more and we're very
stingy strict about what comes into the house. They're totally cool with clothes getting handed down because they have all benefited from that policy and a jumper is genuinely no use to you once it doesn't reach your waist.
I don't know what the legal position is, but morally the toys belong to the children. I'd be furious with DH if he decided to bin an old dress of mine because I don't
fit in it any more wear it any more. I think children deserve the same courtesy.
That said, a little psychological manipulation goes a long way. "Oh it's such a shame we can't play with a ride on fire engine in our flat. If we gave it to another little boy then we'd have space for more blocks / a dolls house / the Octopod instead."
I don't think the hoarders saying 'My mum used to bin my stuff', etc, were 3.
Just do it. Would you not want to keep some stuff for your younger child though? We did for DS2 (although we had a loft in our flat so easier to store). Now he is nearly 3, his baby/young toddler stuff is being given away without consultation and he will never notice in a million years. It's not like he is short of things to play with. For DS1, who is 6.5, we just talk about what he doesn't play with anymore and making room for other toys and he's usually happy to say 'I don't need this anymore, let's put it away for DS2'.
Personally I would be having words with the people who are giving your children these enormous toys when you're only in a flat. We actually had to say to people to please not give big things
which meant they went mad when we finally got a house
Don't get rid of stuff that you'll end up needing for ds2. And yes do it secretly else ds1 will 'rescue' everything.
From a psychological point of view I don't feel comfortable getting rid of his belongings without him knowing. At the end of the day they are his. I'm happy for things to be passed down but we have large extended family and the amount they will get as gifts is unreal.
I have got rid of small toys in the past he no longer plays with/are broken but his bigger ones I feel guilty about.
I think I'll have to go down the route of discussing it with him over a period of time but he won't be happy! He's very attached to his things and I feel too young to grasp other children perhaps getting the benefit of his old toys.
I can't say I remember anything that happened to my toys when I was younger but I daresay my mum probably binned them and she's the biggest hoarder I know!
The big things have all been from others! You should see what DS1 got for his birthday from family members, it was ridiculous and I was quite annoyed as they don't have to deal with their house being filled to the brim. But they would be hurt if they came round and the things weren't on show plus I don't want to seem ungrateful.
Go for it! You know what he does and doesn't play with. If unclear you can always do the phased withdrawal as toomuchtooold suggests.
The "learning experience" is another approach but ime 3 is a little young. The one time I've tried it, -because there was no way around having him with me- I had to bribe him with "anything you want from the charity shop." He promptly attached himself to the biggest, ugliest pink plastic castle known to man. Persuading him, he preferred the tiny Elsa figure was hard work, I can tell you.
Not being glad that people give you things that don't fit in your flat doesn't equal being ungrateful. There's a thread running at present where a grown woman is being given stuff by all her relatives as a sort of hoarding by proxy and it's obvious that they're doing it to control and belittle her. Gifts aren't necessarily without motive.
Lol yes the hoarders aren't three years old but I don't think it's too early to establish the principle that your child is an autonomous human being with certain rights over his belongings. This clearly bothers the OP or she wouldn't have asked!
Broken? Bin it. Saving it "just in case"? Charity shop.
At three you can probably chuck stuff without his noticing especially if the sort out uncovers "new" toys. By five I expect he'll notice.
DH took DS2's dolls house to the dump because he hadn't played with it for a while. A couple of months' later, DS2 (10) asked me to get his dolls house out of the cupboard for him and was distraught when I had to admit it'd been thrown out. I ended up buying him a new one (which he has played with ever since).
I still remember my toys being thrown out without my permission and I still feel cross about it!
Are there any friends you could
permanently loan some of these toys to so that your DC know they are there if they want them?
Don't feel guilty.
Gather up a few of the bigger toys and bring them down to your charity shop. If your DS has as many toys as you're making out, then he genuinely wont miss them at all. Plus think of it this way - by donating them to a charity shop, they will benefit financially once the toys get sold and some other child will benefit from being able to play with them. Finally you benefit from them not cluttering up your home. Winners all around I'd say
From a psychological point of view how can he possibly be upset/bothered if he doesn't even realise they're missing?
Do as others suggested, take away the ones that aren't player with for a week or so, then drip then off at the shop.
He won't be affected, because he probably has so much stuff he wouldn't notice.
Do you keep hold of all his clothes too? From stone he was born? His bottles, his weaning spoons, his dummies etc? They are his after all...
Yeah definitely talk it through with him first. Explain how you've hurt yourself today because you don't have enough space for them all and how other children will be able to play with them because he doesn't really play with them anymore.
I think it's best to discuss before hand purely because I'll NEVER forget my mother throwing this massive flamingo puppet my uncle had bought me out when I was at school one day. I cried for days over that. She threw it out simply because she hated it . It was pretty traumatic tbh and I did have a hoarding room in my house until I cleared it for DS.
We used to take the outgrown stuff to a car boot sale. then the kids got some mad money and the rest was put away for big things later.
That way it didnt upset them as it was all out in the open and they got something back.
They also learned about being able to tell the difference between stuff and their precious things.
I'm currently negotiating getting rid of my daughters IKEA play kitchen, it's taken a while but she's finally agreed that it can go. However, we only negotiated because it's quite big and if it was spirited off suddenly it would be noticed. I often bag things and put them in the cupboard under the stairs for a few months, if that transition goes unnoticed they're off to the charity shop whenever I can remember.
I recently selected some of her books to hand into my work for the kids in the waiting room, she caught me and needless to say the dozen I'd picked were her favourite books ever, they sat on the landing for two months after her drama filled pleas to keep them untouched. They are now being enjoyed by kids who come to my work.
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