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Why do I find it such an effort to do things with my kids ??

(97 Posts)
IllegallyBrunette Sun 03-Aug-08 16:40:24

I do very little with them tbh. Can't remember the last time I played a game with them or anything like that and I think that is probably because it normally ends in an argument of some sort.

I did play with them on the trampoline the other day, but have no particular desire to repeat the experience.

I think the main reason I do so little with them is because when I do do things with them they end up misbehaving and making me feel like I wasted my time, but then perhaps that is because I don't spend enough time doing things with them in the first place.

Anyone know what I mean ??

They seem quite happy to amuse themselves 99.9% of the time tbh, but I feel like I should be doing more.

Loriycs Sun 03-Aug-08 16:55:31

im not great at doing indoor activities such as sticking, making crafts etc, probably because ive always hated it myself. Love going out, even if just in the garden.Parhaps if you find something that you really enjoy yourself such as cycling or skating then you could do it that as a family. Dont fall into the myth that all other moms are doing all these exiting things with their kids when alone with them. I dont beleive it.Many just like to give that impression, so dont beat yourself up over it

moondog Sun 03-Aug-08 16:56:55

I think you have to find something that all of you enjoy or it isutterly soul destroying. For me that means cooking, swimming and walking and no to tedious playgrounds and the dreaded indoor play.

motherinferior Sun 03-Aug-08 16:59:33

Yes, board games drive me insane while rather to my surprise jigsaws are quite fun.

And cooking. As long as they get an equal turn to lick the spoon afterwards, obviously.

Loriycs Sun 03-Aug-08 16:59:40

I hate indoor paly areas too, but my kids love them so i have to grin and bear it sometimes. Just not when i have PMS!!!!!!!!

Guadalupe Sun 03-Aug-08 17:00:11

I agree, has to be something you enjoy doing. I personally hate swimming pools and never take mine. They do swimming classes after school so I don't feel bad. I like cooking with them and going to the park and other things.

charliecat Sun 03-Aug-08 17:02:31

I know EXACTLY what you mean.
I only do things with them that I like doingblush
So we play scrabble drafts and chess, but if the other sister wants to play instead of me i graciouslly let themwink
No mousetrap or anything like that.
I supply things, like chalk and marbles and bubbles, but wont join in<on MN instead>
Outside I walk while they skate, but I have just brought myself a pair... so I will be joining them soongrin
Most of the time the only thing I do do with them is read them a chapter of a book and I make myself because I dont do that much with them.
They used to help me weed. They dont now.
I try to remain interested when they rabbit on about DS games. I DO pick up on one bit and ask them later, appearing interestedblush

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:03:50

oh me too i HATE playgrounds

i used to worry abut mess wen doing stuff like cooking, baking, (oh my god ill have to tidy the kitchen) going to the beach (the car will get full of sand) and gardening stuff (they wil get so muddy and its just more work for me)

i had to tell myself to get over these things ans when i eventually did i found the were fun

i hate stuff thats aimed at kids and prefer to do day to day stuff like the above

and the dds do too im 100% sure of that

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:05:09

although i quite like playing with barbie

as long as I get to pick the outfits

findtheriver Sun 03-Aug-08 17:05:10

Agree moondog. There is no point in going through the motions with things you just don't enjoy. I remember one mother from when my kids were little who I used to call the 'tick box mum' (not to her face!!) because this seemed to be her approach to parenting. She did everything - arts and crafts, baking, toddler gym, toddler music,indoor play centres... and to be honest there was NO noticeable difference between her children and anyone elses! You can run yourself ragged trying to do everything - and who benefits??
Think of a few activities you enjoy, and then your enjoyment will rub off on your children. If there are things you just can't bear (for me it was soft play centres - why would I want to spend an afternoon smelling other children's stinky feet??) then don't do them. Occasionally my dh took ours to soft play, but it's not exactly an essential experience for young children!!
Another tip I had was to try to incorporate the kids into all the normal day to day stuff - eg rather than make a big deal out of baking a cake, why not encourage your children to help chop vegetables for the evening meal? Let's face it, cooking a proper meal is far more useful than knowing how to bake cakes.
It's about striking a balance. Children want you there sometimes, joining in and playing, but they also learn by being left to their own devices.

theexmrsfederer Sun 03-Aug-08 17:07:31

Some people are just not "mumsy" types who enjoy doing things with their children. I am one of those people.

I rarely play games with them, I don't bake cakes, don't take them swimming (unless on holiday), don't watch films with them etc etc.

Part of the reason is there is a large age gap so difficult to find activities they both like. Another reason is that they constantly fight and vie for attention so it all ends up a nightmare. I spend most of my time separating them.

Having said that, they have separate friends, separate activities and as a parent I enable all that to happen. I don't feel I have to do things "with them" constantly and they seem pretty well-adjusted to me.

noddyholder Sun 03-Aug-08 17:07:48

It is boring but worth making the effort as they love it and these are the things they remember and I know now that ds is 14 and has no need for me to entertain him I look back on all the things we used to do with fondness and he does remember and I think appreciates it.I too found some things mind numbingly dull but so what?

Loriycs Sun 03-Aug-08 17:08:21

yes i hate Mousetrap too, all those fiddly bits to put together, no thank you, give me snakes and ladders any day!

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:08:42

my children could get the swings going independently from age 2

becuase i got bored pushing the swing after ab out 3 seconds blush

moondog Sun 03-Aug-08 17:10:42

That's roughly why mine starting swimming v early. I wanted to wear them out and have proper swim myself instead of shivering in shallow end.

IllegallyBrunette Sun 03-Aug-08 17:10:51

I am not very good at cooking, well baking anyway, but i have helped them make rice krispie cakes and stuff in the past.

It is hard to find a board game that they all want to play aswell. The girls like more complicated ones, but then Ds gets in a strop because he doesn't understand.

moondog Sun 03-Aug-08 17:11:37

Now they are just 4 and 7 and as om holiday, for the first time in seven years Icanlounge on asunbed with a book. Tis sheer heaven.

moondog Sun 03-Aug-08 17:12:11

They are swimming five hours a day at the moment.Sleep like tops. grin

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:12:57

im shit at baking too

better to make things like curry that you can actually EAT

or soup

thats dead easy and impossilbe to get wrong

or stuff like fajitas htat is fun

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:13:47

oh MD are you havinga nice time? still in Bangladesh?

my dds could swim from their third birthdays

<preen>

IllegallyBrunette Sun 03-Aug-08 17:13:55

They are swimming five hours a day, howcome ??

My youngest two have just finnished a weeks worth of lessons and having one set thing to do every day did help alot.

Mine all love swimming, but if I took them every day it would cost me £42 for the week.

Loriycs Sun 03-Aug-08 17:14:12

yes Noddyholder good point about looking back. My eldest is 17 and i often look back to our special times together when she was as child,especially as it was just me and her for 11 years. Fond memories for both of us. She's out doing her own thing mostly now.She wants to take her brother (age 6) to the zoo on Friday when i'm at work, and that'll be a special time for them.

IllegallyBrunette Sun 03-Aug-08 17:14:53

Oh i see Moondog, sounds good smile

I am really looking forward to our holiday and suspect that my dc wil spend the majority of every day in the pool too.

nailpolish Sun 03-Aug-08 17:15:10

take them for lessns brunette

then you can go to the cafe with a magazine

headzookeeper Sun 03-Aug-08 17:15:12

Gled other mums feel the same as me. Thought it was just me being a bad mum. Know the feeling with squabbling kids and age differences my three ds's are 8 4 and 2 and trying to find something thay can all do is a nightmare and when I do they argue, fight and generally winge at each other until I lose my rag and give it up as a bad job. Then they argue fight and winge at me. Can't win.

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