Constant planning...(7 Posts)
I babysit for a friends five year old daughter quite a lot, pretty much every couple of months I will have her for the weekend at least to give her Mum some time to herself. She is a lovely little girl but has had some difficulties in life meaning that she is very insecure. One trait I notice of this is that she always needs to know exactly what is going on later in the day, what we are having for tea, what is going on tomorrow etc.
Because of this I try to have good plans in place so I can let her know everything which is going on but I do find that it wears me out because even once we have discussed the plans about ten times she spends the whole day constantly confirming the plans for later rather than just focusing on what we are doing.
What I want to know is if anyone has any advice on how to deal with this, I feel like I'm not being consistent because for ages I try to re-affirm everything that is going on, but it literally is constant and I do find myself getting worn out and sometimes snapping at her when she is eating her lunch and talking about tomorrows dinner or what time she needs to go to bed.
Its hard because whilst she has a routine here in terms of going to bed, dinner-time etc, because I am just babysitting she is out of her normal routine so I know I should be patient but does anyone have any tips for reducing the sheer volume of questions?
How about some kind of a visual timetable on the wall? With pictures of what will be happening and in what order that she can refer to herself.
Hi, would it help to have a visual calendar that you can do with her, with the days seperated in three parts - morning, afternoon, evenings - and meals, she could help you draw what you will do on each part of each day. she could refer to it regularly herself, or at least maybe if it's on paper and she has helped make it, she might remember it more and it might make her feel more secure. I find that sometimes, children who repeat the same questions over and over again simply want to engage with you but don't know any other way. DS1 often asks me for food and drinks - loads of time every day, over and over again, but it's not because he is hungry it's because he wants me to speak to him.
Not specific to the girls needs, but my toddler does this- asks the same question over and over. I tend to answer it afew times then say " You tell me" and then he gives me the answer and moves on to the next annoying questioning series!
Also as she is that bit older could you make her a little picture/work schedule with days, times and then pictures of what is happening. Like a visual timetable-- like this?
Have you thought of writing it down - simple words and pictures to indicate what's happening in a way she will understand. Do this at the beginning of each stay and then put it up on the wall/fridge so she can look at it when she wants to?
We do this when we have our nephew and niece to stay as our nephew is like this (also had a tough start in life and is mildly autistic) and needs to have a routine and understand what's happening.
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