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Your secondary kids after school. How much interaction?

(5 Posts)
EsmeeSqualor Mon 24-Sep-12 17:02:10

I've recently stopped having an afterschool cm for my kids, as my older dd has been very ill and she's needed me to be around more. I'm a freelancer, so I'm still trying to work from home a bit after they come back from school, but I'm finding it all a bit weird.

I'm finding the adjustment hard, tbh. I'm with them for an extra 3.5 hours a day. I'm a single parent, so the time away from my dds in the day now feels very short. I've had very complex family issues to deal with as well, and I've felt that I've been protecting my dds by not being around them so much as I've been adversely emotionally affected by these issues, and the extra time away from them has historically given me the opportunity to sort my head out so that I can be a better parent around them. So today, for instance, I am EXHAUSTED and miserable, and I really just want to go to sleep, but I feel that I can't because it's not a good role model for them. When they used to go to the cm, I could do that fine and then be all sparkly for them when they came back.

So now I find that I'm irascible from seeing them too much, can't really focus on work with them around, am not quite sure how much I SHOULD be interacting with them after school.

I realise that the work issue is one that I need to sort out myself, but those of you who are SAHM with older kids, what the hell do you DO with them after school? It's a long, long time from 330-10pm. How much do you interact with them and how much are they kind of doing their own thing? Obviously I do loads of ferrying, some homework assisting, etc, but I almost have a sense of social anxiety, as if I need to be entertaining them or something, and I certainly don't want them to know how shit I'm feeling.

SecretSquirrels Mon 24-Sep-12 17:32:49

I don't do anything with them.
If they go to activities there is some ferrying about otherwise the routine is roughly this.
4pm DS2 (14) gets home.I ask about his day he says as little as possible, watches tv for a bit then goes to his room and does homework.
5.15 DS1(16) gets home. He's just started 6th form and is very enthusiastic. Tells me about his day then disappears to his room to watch You Tube/ do homework.
7pm I cook and we sit down and eat together.
7.30 they disappear to finish homework or skype friends.
8pm until to bedtime I read for a while and often then we all watch something on tv together.
Quite dull really.
I am rarely involved with homework except to make sure DS2 has done it.

cory Tue 25-Sep-12 08:29:55

Afraid my two (12 and 15) let themselves in and entertain themselves (and sometimes a friend) until a parent comes home around 5.30-6. If I am at home in the afternoon, we say a friendly word to each other now and then, but mostly do our own thing until supper time and socialise after that.

In your case, I would find it totally ok to tell them that you are going to have a nap between x and y time, because of your work/ not being well and could they please keep the noise down and then you can have a snack afterwards (or whatever).

EsmeeSqualor Wed 26-Sep-12 11:49:30

Yes, yes, that's what I want, for us to be doing our own thing until supper time, apart from when they need ferrying about the place.
That's what I'm going to work on doing. I think they're used to me either being totally available, or totally unavailable (ie not there). So it's weird for all of us me being there but not being available to them.

amck5700 Wed 26-Sep-12 14:44:34

My kids love when I am working at home because they can then be on screen/computers etc without me hassling them smile We usually eat about 5/5.30 tho and usually activities in the evening and then not much interaction tbh.

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