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How do you deal with not being able to do as much with your subsequent children as you did with your PFB?

(10 Posts)
choceyes Sun 25-Sep-11 21:57:50

I have two DCs. DS who is nearly 3yrs and 13 month old DD.

With DS I felt I was constantly pointing out things to him, reading to him, singing to him, taking him to music classes, you know, generally teaching him things. He was an early talker, who knew loads of word early on, got a fantastic love of books and would want me to read to him for up to an hour even at about 12 months of age.

I just don't have the time to do this with DD now, with DS to look after too, as he takes up a lot of my time (for example, if we go to the library DS wants all my attention and will have me reading books to him most of the time, even if I try to read a book to DD, DS wants his book read first), much more than DD. and I guess that is normal when you have a toddler and baby. I feel guilty about how I am not doing the same for DD as I did for DS and I worry that she will be behind developmentally. She is not keen on reading books anyway, and I have tried a few times but she just walks away.

I'm not worried as such, but I wondered what others did, and if anybody had any tips to help me.

notnowbernard Sun 25-Sep-11 22:03:22

i've got 3

agree you 'do' more with no.1 but with subsequents they get so much from the siblings that they just don't get from you that it all balances out...

and with DC3 i'm finding that he is as happy pottering alonside me while I do the daily crap such as laundry and supermarket as he is being 'stimulated' at a baby group

they just like hanging out with you at the end of the day smile

try not to feel guilty

cheeseandmarmitesandwich Sun 25-Sep-11 22:07:03

Does DS go to preschool? I have a similar gap, my DDs are 3.5 and 15 months and I try to make time for DD2 when DD1 is in preschool instead of just catching up on the housework! I have taken her to music groups etc alone sometimes and it was really nice.

I think it's inevitable that you do less stuff with the 2nd though. Sometimes I think it might even be goo for them- DD1 is an attention-seeking drama queen who can't really play alone very well and I worry I've given her too much attention! (Or maybe that's just being 3!) DD2 on the other hand could entertain herself with a potato quite happily!

I do think the 2nd child benefits a lot from just having the older sibling around. And DD2 may not go to many groups but we have a lot of playdates with DD1's friends, lots of whom have younger siblings, so she gets to mix with lots of other kids.

So don't worry too much!

cheeseandmarmitesandwich Sun 25-Sep-11 22:07:04

Does DS go to preschool? I have a similar gap, my DDs are 3.5 and 15 months and I try to make time for DD2 when DD1 is in preschool instead of just catching up on the housework! I have taken her to music groups etc alone sometimes and it was really nice.

I think it's inevitable that you do less stuff with the 2nd though. Sometimes I think it might even be goo for them- DD1 is an attention-seeking drama queen who can't really play alone very well and I worry I've given her too much attention! (Or maybe that's just being 3!) DD2 on the other hand could entertain herself with a potato quite happily!

I do think the 2nd child benefits a lot from just having the older sibling around. And DD2 may not go to many groups but we have a lot of playdates with DD1's friends, lots of whom have younger siblings, so she gets to mix with lots of other kids.

So don't worry too much!

piprabbit Sun 25-Sep-11 22:09:25

I feel guilty.

My DS is also a lot more challenging than his older sister - so when I do make the time and effort to do something different with him, I have to negotiate and persuade and cope with tantrums. So I do much less with him - partly because of being tied close to home for the school run and partly because he doesn't seem to enjoy it much sad.

lovingthecoast Sun 25-Sep-11 22:14:36

I have four and I feel that the younger youngs are actually happier more self-sufficient children because they had to be.

My eldest is nearly 8 and is still very emotionally dependent on my and a little clingy. The younger two esp just get on with things.

If it helps, I have a relatively small gap between DS and DD1 (18mths) She got very little attention until he went to nursery and even then just for a short time as her sister then came along. She is very able academically and very, very sociable. If anything, she was streaks ahead of him developmentally. DD2, not quite as able academically but socially, very well rounded and the most content of the three. DS2 still too young to tell but hopefully, he'll just fit right in too.

L0velyRita Sun 25-Sep-11 22:17:27

I also have 3 and don't really worry about it.

The youngest, currently 6 months, spends a lot of time in the bumbo/on my lap roaring at whatever the other 2 are doing. She doesn't seem too bothered that I'm not doing any activities solely for her benefit.

Saying that, now the eldest 2 are in school and nursery, I'll have the chance to take her swimming, something that wasn't really possible with dd1 or dd2 but that I wished I could have done more of.

I'm lucky in that my Mum would sometimes have one child for the afternoon so I could take the other one to the library/park/soft play, that helped a lot - do you have anyone who could help you out like that occasionally?

I think I accept now that I can't do exactly the same for all of them, but they get so much from having siblings and I hope that outweighs any particular activity they may have missed out on.

Try not to beat yourself up.

cat64 Sun 25-Sep-11 22:23:11

Message withdrawn

changer22 Sun 25-Sep-11 22:23:18

Four here too (within 6 years). I realised that number 3 hadn't learnt to swim as the first two did by going to very expensive baby swimming classes and number 4 very rarely gets read to blush and already watches possibly unsuitable tv programmes (that hopefully go over his head - Dr Who).

But... the younger two, I think, are the most socially well adjusted of the four. They are both popular, easy going children, adaptable, very caring and good fun. Of course, child number 3 could drown and number 4 will be illiterate but all good otherwise wink.

choceyes Mon 26-Sep-11 09:10:57

Thanks for the postive stories!

Although I am not sure if DD gets that much from DS, apart from being pushed, hit and toys grabbed. He is still quite rough with her and I can't even leave her in the same room as him a lot of the time. However, despite this, she does get excited when she sees him.

They both go to nursery 3 days a week on the days I work. So I don't really get any time with either of themn alone, expect at the weekend, when maybe DH will take one and I spend some time with the other.

And you are all so right about my PFB. He is attention seeking, won't play on his own, still very demanding emotionally etc etc and I feel like I am being suffocated when I am with him and I end up trying to give him as much love and attention as I can and at the end of the day I am exhuasted and i realise DD has just been happily playing on her own all day, with only a few moments of interaction with her.

I still wear DD in a sling and co-sleep with her, so in a way, that has worked out well, as I feel at least I am physically close to her, even if I can't be interacting with her all the time.

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