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Any else struggling entertaining an Only?

(50 Posts)
BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 11:24:49

My DD is 4, due to start school in September.

Today is day 14 of isolation.

I'm struggling with having to entertain her all day long on my own. Anything I set up holds her attention for all 20 minutes.

I've tried doing letter and number writing work sheets as given by the childminder, but she just refuses to do anything like that with me.

She rarely plays by herself, but will occasionally. I take what I get.

Everyone on SM seem to be posting about doing all these amazing activities and how lovely this time is to create memories with them...she's too young to do most of them or isn't interested.

My DH is great with her but he is WFH, very long hours with no break so we are on our own.

Please tell me others are finding it just as hard?

I'm losing patience with her constantly.

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Hartleyhare1206 Wed 25-Mar-20 11:27:17

Me!! I am!!
Trying to tell myself is this is the worst problem we have in all of this, then we are the lucky ones!
But it’s hard not to find it tough, day in day out! Keep going, we are doing this to keep our babies safe, and that’s the biggest and best thing we can ever do for them xxx

Waxonwaxoff0 Wed 25-Mar-20 11:38:55

Me. DS is nearly 7 and used to the routine of seeing his friends at school. We're doing schoolwork but there isn't a huge amount to do, not like a full school day. We don't even have a garden to go out and play, we are going out for some fresh air but obviously we're trying not to be out for too long.

He's bored and I'm bored. There are only so many times you can play board games/bake/craft every day. I'm probably allowing more screen time than is acceptable.

sofiathe2nd Wed 25-Mar-20 11:39:16

Me! Mine’s 5 and poor thing is so good but just loves to chat and play games

moita Wed 25-Mar-20 11:46:28

Mine's 3 but yes I'm struggling. And really worried and not sleeping so I have zero patience.

BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 11:47:10

Thank god. Thank you for your responses.

I've always struggled with parenting - the relentlessness of it and I try not to recent the lack of my own time, space. It's fine normally as she has childcare 3 days a week. And the other two days we have clubs/classes to break the day up.

I had PND when she was small, not helped by the isolation i felt at the time.

At least from tomorrow we can go
For a walk if we want to. Get some blimming bread if we can find any.

And yes she's having a lot of screen time just so I get a break.

Just need to shake myself out of this miserable headspace.

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BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 11:47:55

Always worse when you can't sleep. Just try and keep away from the news, if you can.

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Aloe6 Wed 25-Mar-20 11:51:21

September is a while away, but once she’s at school she’ll need to focus and complete activities before she’s allowed to go and free play. It’s good practice now, at school she won’t be able to refuse.

Hartleyhare1206 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:00:20

@BertieDrapper I think you are me. My experiences of motherhood have mirrored yours massively, and I can feel my mental health struggling with the 24/7-ness of it all.
I also worry about the virus hurting DD or someone I love. It feels like there is no escape from it all, but if we stay safe then it will all have been worth it I guess? X

Stupidanduseless Wed 25-Mar-20 12:04:53

Mine is nearly 4 but her brother is 11 so it’s almost like she’s an only because he won’t play with her.
We are doing joe wicks first thing, then a long bath, then some letters and numbers, then a craft activity - then she plays until lunch. After lunch we’ve been going for a walk for an hour and a half (we live in countryside so this is possible without encountering anyone). Then back and she has a snack and we read. Then I’ve been putting her out in the garden for a while. After that it’s usually about 3.30 so I tend to cave on screentime.
The trouble is she’s up at 7am and won’t go to sleep until 9.30pm - it’s a long long long day and I’m not getting anything done in the house or any time to relax myself!

Stellaris22 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:09:53

Struggling too, ours is 7 and has undiagnosed ADHD. She needs a routine and any disruptions are really difficult for her.

School aren't sending anything out till after Easter and just getting her to sit down for work is impossible.

I can't post asking for help on FB because it's currently full of 'look at the wonderful things were doing' and I'm in tears because we are struggling just to get anything basic done.

I'm terrified that when school opens again we'll be even further behind academically than she already is.

OnlyFoolsnMothers Wed 25-Mar-20 12:21:38

Yes it’s awful. Me and my husband both entertaining our 2.5yr old and it’s still impossible and draining. Though I’m jealous you get 20mins of focus, every activity on average entertains mine for 4mins !!!!!!!

sofiathe2nd Wed 25-Mar-20 12:25:17

Honestly, we spent a day or two struggling through the home learning and then just gave up: trying to embrace this extra time with my girl before she inevitably prefers her friends! So hard though: very pregnant, working full time and trying to normalise the whole thing for her a bit... have found just getting her involved in prepping food, making beds, sorting laundry is working well... also we’ve been having lots of long baths, stories with cuddles and just general chats. Everyone is going to be behind to some extent when they go back so really trying not to stress about that side of things (and staying away from the home learning groups on Facebook as not doing wonders for my mental health!!)

Sugarfreejelly Wed 25-Mar-20 12:26:39

My three year old has an attention span of about 1.3 seconds. It’s a nightmare!

BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 12:29:23


I know she can do it as does it at childminders but They always do things better for other people, don't they!?
Also she likes to be like her other friends.

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Winter2020 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:30:16

sorry if you already do this but her screen time can be quite educational if you put "abc songs", "number songs" etc into you tube. You could also use apps for kids to support learning - apps where they touch to count items or trace letters etc there are good apps for young kids and usually a free version.

BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 12:31:23


Sorry to hear you struggled too lovely. And you are totally right, we just need to keep them safe.
I just worry about the lack of socialisation. She's really social, and worry this will stop that! X

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BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 12:32:46


Yes to the long baths. We definitely utilise those!
And from tomorrow we can get out of the house for a walk! Which I can't wait for x

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thethoughtfox Wed 25-Mar-20 12:33:16

I found an online daily schedule and have adapted it. It gives shape to the day. My child is older but plan it out ie messy play time/ naps/ snack/ lunch/ quiet time/ music/ read a book/ mum and me play/ help mum tidy or prep dinner/ bath time / screen time if allowed/ family/ friend face time etc It stops the whole day stretching out in front of you like a chasm! There are loads of online things happening too: people reading stories to kids, kids yoga etc

BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 12:35:06

Try not to worry. So many kids will be behind.
Just do what you can. Can you ask her how she'd like the days to look like? What she would like to learn?

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bookworm14 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:37:18

Right there with you. I also have a four year old DD but she has been at school since last September. She is currently ill (with impetigo, not corona - shitty timing) and only wants to watch the iPad. We have done a bit of craft and a couple of activities set by the school, but nothing else structured. I don’t know how I’m going to cope with potentially months of this. Just hoping it will be easier to instil some routine when she’s feeling better.

It’s so upsetting as she loved school and her teacher.

BertieDrapper Wed 25-Mar-20 12:38:04


2.5 is a tough age. Does she nap?
So jealous of any whose kids still nap.

My DD used to laugh me tumble at that age. Has she seen it? Could be good for a break x

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ParkheadParadise Wed 25-Mar-20 12:44:28

Dd is 4. She has spent hours in the garden, luckily she will play by herself there.
In the afternoon we have been cuddling up in the sofa and going to sleep 🤣🤣.

Hartleyhare1206 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:45:33

@BertieDrapper yes I worry about the socialisation aspect but we’ve been having Skype video call play dates with her preschool friends which I think has helped a little? Could you do similar!
Had to laugh at your comment about naps, I was only thinking earlier, why couldn’t this pandemic happen when she was having two long naps each day, and happy sitting in her bouncy chair for hours on end! Those were the days 😂😂😂

Kanin Wed 25-Mar-20 12:55:45

Also struggling with 7 year old DD. We wrote a timetable which we haven't stuck to at all. She's watching TV, but is getting bored and wanting to do other stuff. Finding it hard to work and to get her engaged with something.

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