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Really struggling with 3.4yo and 8mo baby at home - how am I supposed to do this??

(8 Posts)
BotBotticelli Mon 18-Apr-16 10:12:11

Please can someone give me some reassurance this is normal and some tips on how to deal with it???

Ds1 is 3.4yo and is very demanding - he wants me to play with him loads and have a very active imagination. Wants to play lots of elaborate imaginary games with his dinosaurs/figures etc. We are working on encouraging him to play independently and have some (slow!) success. He will now play independently if if am having a shower or doing chores for 15-20 mins at a time which is a real breakthrough for us as he has always been very needy.

BUT he has a 20 minute or so limit and then he wants (needs!) me to play with him.

Ds2 is 8mo and is going through a fecking awful phase of wanting me to hold his fingers and walk him round the house. All day! Whenever I am not doing this his whines and cries. He is not interested in crawling and cannot do it. Just wants to walk but cannot unaided.

We have a walker with wheels and he will happily go in this in the kitchen for 20 mins whilst I cook BUT once chores are done, he wants to walk.

If I try and sit him down with baby toys he gets cross and chucks them away after 3 mins. If I sit him down with some of DS1's big boy toys (big jigs trains for example) he just lobs them about and then DS1 cries cos his track is ruined.

Quite often end up with both of them whining and crying cos I cannot possibly play with both of them - cannot play imaginary dinosaur games whilst finger-walking a baby round the house. Baby is so rawly and active and into everything. Toddler so demanding. argh.

Am at the end of my rope by 8am usually (all up by 0630 in this house).

How the fuck am I supposed to keep them both entertained and happy at home during this godawful phase?!? Practical tips please!

Am very lucky that ds1 goes to nursery 3 days per week sobhe has lots of stimulating activities and playtime with his little friends there. And I have lots d lovely baby only time where we endlessly finger walk round in peace (!) so they're both getting their needs met BUT it's just not working when we are all at home together 😫😫

IwannabeKate Mon 18-Apr-16 10:27:52

Sounds grim, it will pass before you know it though, especially the baby.

Practical tips. You mention a walker but how about a Jumperoo? You can pick them up on gumtree for about a third of the price £35ish and they are brilliant at that stage.

And, although some may disapprove, you don't mention tv? Seriously, I'm happy to admit I couldn't have coped with two little ones without a bit (a lot) of cbeebies/netflix. Give yourself a break xx

SleepyRoo Mon 18-Apr-16 10:54:25

I have similar ages. Can you get them outside to park or soft play as much as possible? I find it far less mental than staying in...

BotBotticelli Mon 18-Apr-16 21:22:20

Thank you! Yes the older one does watch telly although I try not to put it on in the morning as its then hard to get him out the house or interested in doing other things.

I usually try to wait until late morning when I put CBeebies on whilst I make lunch. Then DS1 often watches a bit of a film in the later afternoon (around 4pm for an hour or so) whilst I make dinner.

And yes we go out the house loads! On days when both boys are at home we always go out somewhere in the morningAND the afternoon. Parks, play dates, soft play, church hall playgroups etc. Things are much less annoying out and about....but even with two outings per day, there's a lot of time to fill in a 12 hour day! Can't be out all the time and the odd hour or two in the house is doing my nut in!!

ShutUpLegs Mon 18-Apr-16 21:34:33

I used to set up indoor assault courses - prop the sofa cushions in a diagonal from the edge of the sofa to the floor. Older DC could climb up and slide down by themselves, baby needed a bit of help and a steadying hand but basically I could sit by the slide and let them take turns.

Set up chairs in a long line or in a square (backs together) and get cruising baby to navigate it be themselves.

BIg pile of cushions for everyone to jump/fall into.

I seem to remember getting out big bowls and spoons and dried pasta/chick peas etc.. and letting them stir stuff up or play with it in their hands, watching out for stuff going into mouths, of course. <disclaims any liability>

Sometimes, they just have to get used to it. I used to put the littlest in then play pen and then hurtle past the door making silly faces and yelling boo, whilst persuading older one to carry laundry or shopping or whatever I was trying to do.

Now they are 7 & 9 and I just have to refer fights over Sylvanian families. Happy days.

JuxtapositionRecords Tue 19-Apr-16 07:09:35

Are there any grandparents or friends that could take your eldest for a morning or afternoon every week for the next couple of months if you explain you are struggling? Chances are baby will be walking by then and should be happier. I remember the walking them around phase, it was really hard going!

ishouldcocoa Tue 19-Apr-16 07:23:57

See if you could get a regular visit from your local Homestart. They're a charity that help out families with pre school children, who have all sorts of problems, from big ones to little ones!
You can self refer, and it's not means tested. I used to be a volunteer, and one of my families was in a similar situation. I would go round one afternoon a week and help out.
HTH

leholly Tue 19-Apr-16 09:12:08

Oh god, reading this I realise what I have coming up! I have a 6 mo and a 3.5 yo and the 3.5 yo watches (far too much) tv so I have some sanity left. Am far too tired with a baby that wakes all the time to play games with my eldest, and too selfish to play in the garden with her in this cold weather, and she refuses to go out alone.

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