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How much does your DP/DH actually play with the kids?

(25 Posts)
Maudy Sat 01-Jan-05 22:49:01

Mine hardly ever does. He never sits down and plays a game with them or does a puzzle or anything like that. He says it bores him. Only thing he does do is play playstation with DS. Therefore it is always me having to entertain both DS's who are nearly 5 years apart and have totally different needs. I end up getting really frustrated and getting at him about it and then we just argue and he helps me even less.

He cooks, he cleans he does other things but the children are definitely my responsibility. It just makes me sad that he doesn't want to do these things with them as they are growing up so fast. Am I being stupid?

Maudy Sat 01-Jan-05 23:31:39


singsong Sun 02-Jan-05 11:18:49

Don’t think you are being stupid. It’s a shame your dh doesn’t play with the kids.
I have ds aged 5 months and have to fight my dh to get a look-in sometimes. He loves to do anything for him feeding, nappies, talking and singing to him. He also plays with the older children in the family (nephews, cousins, etc) whenever we see them, which is very often.
Why do you think your dh doesn’t like to play? Is it issues of time or he just doesn’t feel it’s his place? If it’s time maybe you could offer to do something (e.g. a bit of cleaning) whilst he takes care of the kids for an hour. If he feels uncomfortable with it maybe you could suggest some family activities where you’ll all be together at first to ‘ease him into it’ a bit.

Tortington Sun 02-Jan-05 20:33:15

how doeshe entertain the kids wheny ou are nt there?

Nutcracker Sun 02-Jan-05 20:35:56

No my dp doesn't either. If i am out then he will sit them in front of the tv.

Blossomhill Sun 02-Jan-05 20:42:20

My dh is half and half. Plays with the kids and helps with the housework. He will put the tv on too but then I do if I really need to do something without interruptions such as cook dinner.
Can you explain to dh how you feel?

cori Sun 02-Jan-05 20:49:10

I think people sometimes just dont know how to play with kids, with out telling them what to do all the time. My DH doesnt play with DS that much but he does enjooy being with him and doing things with him. Will he read to them? Probably need to find an acitivity that they can both enjoy.? Maybe outdoor activities.? It is understandable that your DH gets bored, they are kids games after all.

Maudy Mon 03-Jan-05 09:30:17

He will read to them and if I am not there he will usually stick the telly on.
As for explaining how I feel Blossom, I do all the time. He jsut tells me I am nagging and to get off his case. It causes more arguments than necessary. We had a huge row after Christmas about the childrens toys. He hates them cluttering up the house and wants them all put away in the childrens rooms. While I agree that I don't want to be overrun by brightly coloured plastic it is me who has to keep running up and down the stairs to get things out while he lies on the sofa watching the cricket, complaining about the noise.
He will play football with DS1 who is 7 but hates doing simple things like just going to the park and pushing DS2 (2) on the swing. He finds it boring. Baiscally he is ultimately a very selfish person and only thinks about what he wants and not what the kids might like. He says I pander to their every whim, but Ijust think that is parenting. I am not a pushover by any means but I like to play with my kids at weekends as I work full time during the week and therefore I think it is our duty as parents.

reindeer Mon 03-Jan-05 10:15:16

Maudy, I'm sorry but I think your dh needs a good kick in the a**e!You don't sound like you pander to the kids, but you are pandering to him. Sorry.

NameChangingMancMidlander Mon 03-Jan-05 11:28:06

We have 3 children, 2 boys from his first marriage who are almost teenagers and a 2 year old DD from our relationship. Our boys love the PS2 and PCs, so DH often plays on these with the boys. He's not much of a one for kicking a ball around outside with them due to having dodgy legs/knees as a result of a serious motorbike accident and the resulting reconstructive surgery.

He doesn't do much 'getting on the floor' type play with DD, again because of his knees. He's also not quite sure what to do when she wants him to play role play type games with her dolls or her HappyLands stuff, but I guess that just comes from him not having much experience of that type of play with little girls. He does however, love to sit and read stories with her (that's his bedtime job) and they love watching movies together.

I think he does his fair share of play with the kids, sometimes he takes a bit of prompting, but nothing extreme ! I suppose I'm the one that does the majority of creative type play with DD whilst DH does plenty of sedentary stuff with her. All in all I'm happy with the amount of play-time DH has with the kids.

We've recently got into playing a few board games as a family when DD has gone to bed. That also came from me, but helps reduce the amount of time the kids spend glued to thir consoles and also reduces the amount of mindless telly time DH and I often and up subjecting ourselves to. The boys love it and it really is good for a bit of family bonding

JaNgLyBELLS Mon 03-Jan-05 11:39:49

I think children can be played with too much - its a kind of spoiling. My DH has always loved to have to have the kids "help" him in the garden and suchlike and that's about it. I think that's ok. Of course when we all go out he joins in ball games. Oh and he loves kite flying with them.

lulupop Mon 03-Jan-05 17:50:29

Maudy, your DH sounds like he was cut from the same cloth as mine. We have a 3 yr old DS and 8 month old DD and ever since DS got to the age where he needed exercise (we have no garden but live next to a park), it's caused friction.

Basically, I find going to the park and pushing DS on a swing pretty boring too, but I think actually, that's what you sign up for when you become a parent: doing things some of the time (OK, a lot of the time) that you either find boring, or at least wouldn't choose to do on your own!

DH NEVER volunteers to go out and do anything with DS unless it's really obvious I want him too, and I'm tired of feeling like a nag so I do it all myself. Yesterday I enforced a family walk to a big park in the morning. In the afternoon some friends were taking their kids to the swings and asked us to go - when I mentioned it to DH he said "Well I'm not going - I'd rather stay and read the papers" When I said, well actually, so would I, but since we have 2 children, how about thinking of their needs?, he just rolled his eyes so I left it and went on my own.

I agree that children can be spoiled by the idea that they have to be constantly entertained, but ours are still too young to go out on their own, or even play alone for very long, and yet DH just sits and reads his paper or watches TV. If I leave him with the kids, the TV's on full time.

It depresses me no end and i'm actually thinking about leaving as our views on childcare, as with so many other things, seem diametrically opposed.

juniperdewdrop Mon 03-Jan-05 17:54:37

You're not being stupid maudy, it's sad. I'm not that good at playing per se with the boys. Dh,MIL,my mates and sis are and I'm amazed at how easily it comes to them. I'm always up for chasing them and playing board games or on the PC.

I wonder if it's anything to do with his childhood? I can't remember my parents playing with me tbh, was always out with my friends. I hope you come to some compromise as it must be very frustrating for you.

snowyduck Mon 03-Jan-05 19:11:39

I know it sounds unbelievable but i have the opposite problem. dh plays with my boys too much imo. He finds it really easy because actually he is just playing himself (never grew up) and they just join in!
I think kids should be bored some of the time and get used to just bumbling along with whatever the parents are doing and sometimes be played with otherwise they get used to the attention and then find it hard to play alone, which then means a miserable time when the parents are busy.
Dh goes out biking and doing laddish type stuff loads and aswell as making me feel left out it makes it incredibly difficult when he's at work because ds2 constantly asks when daddy will be home and wanders around at a loose end...despite a house full of toys, craft stuff etc etc

lavenderr Mon 03-Jan-05 19:17:39

he does a lot of tickling, making them laugh and he does spend lots of time playing board games with me and them, airfix kits he does do a lot with ds, with dd he doesn't play so much but isn't too bad...not like me being an ugly old troll and running around the playground and chasing them but everyone is different (btw my parents never really played with us at all...just something some people are good at and comes naturally and others me comes naturally but dh not so much)

jollymum Mon 03-Jan-05 19:39:31

I just did a long message and where did it go? Tech, did you delete it BTW? It was a bit contreversial and I'm pissed off now, 'cos it was a long one and took me ages!

huggybear Mon 03-Jan-05 19:56:36

im lucky, my husband spends alot of time playing with our kids wether its puzzles, racing cars or just silly rolling around on the floor games. he loves putting them to bed and feeding them too. i forget sometimes how wonderful he is.

Kaz33 Mon 03-Jan-05 19:59:51

DP great with the boys, he is just a big kid himself, loads of tickling, jumping, reading etc...

One thing my 3 year old loves doing is jobs with dad, he takes him to the tool box shop ( any DIY shop ) and they play with the showers, kitchens etc...

handlemecarefully Tue 04-Jan-05 10:30:38

Not at all during the week since he is never in.....(works late),

At weekends he is very up for one family outing per day (might be just a walk or a trip to the zoo).....

codswallop Tue 04-Jan-05 10:33:41

he will play sprt wiht them for hours
Plays much more now they are older doesnt do mauch " playing" with dse but reads and cuddles etc

Hulababy Tue 04-Jan-05 10:35:45

DH plays with DD most evenings for aa while - anything from reading, to her VSmile game, to bath time fun or just running around squealing and shrieking together. At weekends he does too, and we do a lot of family orientated thinsg together then.

He doesn't tend to initiate painting or crafty type tasks as he isn't so keen on that.

Once we move and have a garden, Dh is looking forward to being able to play outside and do sporty stuff more with DD.

Bozza Tue 04-Jan-05 10:47:14

Dh plays with them every night. He will do general playing with DD (7 months) and DS and also do lego etc with DS. Doesn't go in for singing games with DD or craft/colouring type activities with DS - these are my domain. He also plays out with DS - football, bike etc. Not keen on taking him to the park etc though.

Maudy Thu 06-Jan-05 13:20:20

Lulupop I know how frustrating it is as this is the sort of thing that happens to me all the time.I end up going to most places on my own as DP can't face all the kids stuff. The way I deal with it is by thinking that we will not have little kids for ever and hope that by the time they get older things will get easier.

I agree that kids should not have to be entertained all the time and for that reason alone (apart from expense) I would never get anything like an in car entertainment system but I do get fed up with always being the one who plays with them. Don't get me wrong, I love playing with them but what I really want is for him to get down on their lever sometimes and muck in. I was sitting on the floor playing a card game with DS1 and 2 the other day and DS1 asked daddy, in the sweetest of ways, if he would like to play with us. Daddy said no and just lay on the sofa and watched the cricket. I think this probably upsets me more than my Ds's but I find it heartbreaking. The message DP is giving is that he finds watching cricket more important that being with them and I think thats quite sad.

Having said all this DP is off work for a few more days and so is picking DS1 up from school today. DS1 is so excited he even turned down the offer of going to his best friends house for tea!!
I know that they love their dad and that he loves them and I suppose thats more important than anything else.

Nikkichik Thu 06-Jan-05 14:09:10

Must admit I'm very lucky in that that my Dh is so good with dd - they adore each other! While I do house things (he sometimes helps with that too!) and cooking or go shopping by myself (hurrah!) he does puzzles with her, has tea parties, reads books, and he is the play dough king! Obviously I do all this stuff too! We bath her together but we take turns in sitting with her while she drinks her milk at bedtime and putting her to bed - the other one does the washing up! He's not great at taking her out on his own - ie. to the park/library/ shopping but the other stuff makes up for it really.

Satine Thu 06-Jan-05 14:17:29

Lulupop and Maudy - it sounds as though your dps/dhs totally take your children for granted and don't know how lucky they are. This struck a nerve as my dh is going to Iraq next month for 6 months and is quietly distraught at leaving our 7 month old dd and 2 1/2 yr old ds for so long. I know whilst he is over there he would give anything to be able to read or play a game with them. Not fair, really! Sorry, I know this isn't helpful to you and I send my hugs, it must be v upsetting for you all.

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