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Does anyone else feel the same?

(27 Posts)
TotallyAshamed Mon 11-Apr-05 16:16:07

I feel like a really lousy mother.
I have this beautiful year old baby, he's what I live for, yet I have no idea what to do with him. We play with his toys but he gets bored with the same-old things, and I have no idea what to do next. We go out about once a day, to town or groups etc, but have no friends locally so when we are at home we are at home alone.
I don't want to go back to work, I would miss him terribly, but when we are meant to spend time together I have no idea what to do to entertain him. He hates me moving away from him, so doing housework and things are hard as he won't play by himself.

I want more children, but I'm worried I'm not even coping with this one. I'm worried his speech and development won't develop very well as I don't know if I am doing enough with him. Would it get easy with more than one? Would they help entertain each other?

I just don't know what to do

FastasleepTheInsomniac Mon 11-Apr-05 16:31:48

You're not lousy! He's probably got seperation anxiety which nearly all older babies and toddlers get - my 14 month old has it, he has to be in the same room as me so chores end up making more of a mess than not doing them! Mine gets bored very easily when I play with him and his toys, so I usually just sit next to him looking vacant! You sound like you're getting out and about lots which is so good for him... and I bet if you're babbling to him in the day (about anything at all) his speech is going to be just fine! Don't worry yourself, you sound perfectly normal hun! xx

dropinthe Mon 11-Apr-05 16:35:25

My first one year old ds was exactly the same and my second 14 month ds(see fastasleep-we do have things in common already!) is now the same-I'm at home with him on my own two days a week and the other time he has his older brother to beat up-have some more-it will get easier with time and he will be perfectly normal-how lucky he is to have mummy at home with him all the time-I bet he's a very happy and contented little chappy!!

TotallyAshamed Mon 11-Apr-05 16:38:26

I thought the vacant look was just mine!

I try desperately to get the housework done, but he has to be with me all the time and I hate to hear him sobbing while I'm just trying to wash up so I stop. But I phase out while we play - after building a tower 100 times or doing a jigsaw 100 times - and then I have no idea what to do next, and he's crying again.

He seems happier with every other family member, his dad (even though this could be due to too much television) and when he's round his grandparents they lavish the attention upon him, and when they aren't he's fascinated by their dog.

So I'm feeling the need to do more and more activities to get us out the house during the day, but then I'm doing the housework at midnight because there's no time to do it while he's awake.

Would a brother or sister make it easier? I suppose by then he'd be easier to entertain, reading, talking, arts and crafts, puzzles. He can't really do that at the moment, not for long enough to keep him entertained as he can't actually 'do' any of it.

Sorry this is turning into a rant. I just feel like I'm doing nothing for him and I hate that

TotallyAshamed Mon 11-Apr-05 16:39:18

He's not content though he cries most of the day because what I'm doing isn't right

FastasleepTheInsomniac Mon 11-Apr-05 16:40:57

You're doing loads! Do you know if there are any mums and toddler groups around your area? Or even some mums from on here - if you go to the meet-ups section? Going out to somewhere full of mums just like you ....and to somewhere with lots of different toys and different babies can make the world of difference even if it's only once or twice a week....

@ dropinthe wow things in common!

dropinthe Mon 11-Apr-05 16:41:19

Maybe he is picking up on your stress? Doing housework at midnight isnt good for anyone! How is Dad helping and have you spoken to him about how you are feeling??

FastasleepTheInsomniac Mon 11-Apr-05 16:42:10

Maybe he's crying because you're spoiling him a bit, that sounds a bit harsh but you really sound like you're doing loads with him, I think given time he'll learn to play with I mean by (oops) himself, and he'll give you a break!

TotallyAshamed Mon 11-Apr-05 16:50:58

That's one of the reasons I try to leave him on his own, but it doesn't last long.

We go to activities nearly every day in the week but it's all too clique-y and so we haven't made any 'friends'.

I just feel like I'm not doing any 'proper' activities with him. 5 minutes on his pop up toy, 5 minutes on his ball game, then 5 minutes with his little people and we're both bored senseless. I'm sure there must be things I'm meant to do with him.
He isn't talking either which is making me worrying I'm not teaching him well enough I think his dad blames me for this too, as I'm with him all day.

dropinthe Mon 11-Apr-05 16:55:02

He'd be pretty special if he was talking at one!!
The only sounds I get from ds2 at 14 months is BaBa!!

dropinthe Mon 11-Apr-05 16:59:24

Is this what you are Totally Ashamed of by the way?? You are really putting yourself down-you ARE NOT doing anything wrong!!Please believe! Do you really want any more kids?

KBear Mon 11-Apr-05 17:00:49

Try playdough, using crayons, lots of toys where you put the object in a hole and it disappears, these things kept my children amused around that age. No one can play with their children ALL the time. They do need lots of different five minute things to keep their interest and you sound like you go out alot and that's good too. Don't knock yourself. What would you consider a "proper activity" at his age?

TotallyAshamed Mon 11-Apr-05 17:02:10

Yes it is this - he really is everything to me and I want to be better for him

Yes I do want more children, we'd like at least 3. We've been thinking of trying, which is what we really want, but I'm worried if I can't cope now what will happen.

muminlondon Mon 11-Apr-05 17:04:21

It sounds very normal - they can't keep still or concentrate much at that age. Have you tried the NCT? I used to go to the playground every day too.

They love new stimuli - that's why they seem to respond to other people rather than you, but that's not any reflection on you. I used to enjoy relaxing when other people were around and was happy dd seemed so sociable.

Blu Mon 11-Apr-05 17:06:45

TA - I think it's quite hard to make friends at 'activities' because pople tend to know each other already, or there isn't any chatting time, anyway.
It sounds as if you could do with some adult company, though. It makes looking after little ones so much easier. Are there any less organised activities where people meet? or ask the organiser of a toddler group in a church or community centre to introduce you to some Mums in the group?
If it feels like your thing, the NCT tea groups really are a great way to meet local parents and the whole point of them is a social occasion for YOU, not listening to '10 fat sausages' for your DS!
But, it sounds as if you are doing a great job as a parent. Just go about your life and tell DS about it as you go!

dropinthe Mon 11-Apr-05 17:06:55

Think-by the time you got pregnant,waited nine months and had new baby he will be nearly two-thats a whole new ball game but you cope because you love them! Exact ages of mine-1 and 3-they love each other to bits!

Katemum Mon 11-Apr-05 17:15:29

For a start don't be so hard on yourself. He will talk when he is ready and you can not force him before he is ready just by spending all day playing with him. I see that he likes to be near you and that is quite usual but it may be a good idea to sit near him but be engaged in something of your own for a few minutes to get him used to playing a little by himself.
If you are as stressed as you sound then he is probably picking up on it, I know its tough but you have to try and accept that you are doing a good job and relax a bit with him. As for the housework, my two like to get involved, takes a lot longer but we get there in the end. How about a washing up bowl, spoons and pots on the floor when you are doing the washing up. let him copy you, he will be playing and learning at the same time.
Do you go swimming with him, most little ones enjoy that and it wears them out as well.
hth.

dinosaur Mon 11-Apr-05 17:17:55

Agree with katemum. If he's bored with his toys, let him take all your pans out of the kitchen cupboards and put potatoes in them/take the lids on and off/bang them with wooden spoons/whatever.

saadia Mon 11-Apr-05 18:04:16

Could you perhaps put him in a playpen or highchair near you while you're doing housework and then keep talking to him while you're working. As to playing, maybe you could get some nursery rhyme tapes and sing along, playing with kitchen stuff is also a good idea.

I'm sure it will get easier with another one. My ds1 was just like yours and always wanted me nearby. It was difficult to get things done. But with ds2, as I haven't been able to give him as much time as I did ds1, he has adapted to the situation. He will sit and play with toys in his playpen for a while when I cook, wash-up etc, (something ds1 woul never have done) but I do try to keep talking to him and engaging him.

I think it's perfectly normal to feel like this with your first child, but with the second you yourself will probably be more relaxed and not put so much pressure on yourself, and yes, they probably will entertain each other for some of the time at least.

WideWebWitch Mon 11-Apr-05 18:20:33

Gosh, you're doing LOADS more than I do, you shouldn't feel guilty! I do washing, cleaning (not much admitedly, but that's because I don't want to, not because I can't), cooking,going to the shops, art galleries, walks, the park, out with friends with 16mo dd - don't put so much pressure on yourself to do activities with him! He just wants to be with you and near you and if you talk to him and give him your time and attention that's all he needs at 1yo imo. And they start to get more interesting a few months after 1 imo!

Gobbledigook Mon 11-Apr-05 18:26:15

TA - don't be so hard on yourself. I really think mothers put far too much pressure on themselves to 'perform' these days and I'm not excluded in that either.

The pans idea is fab and what about dedicating a cupboard in the kitchen to him - fill it full of plastic things and let him empty it and fill it - mine all loved that.

Don't be put off having more - more than one is hard work but they do entertain each other. DS1 and DS2 are 4 and 2.5 now and they are great together (bar the obligatory scrap of course!). In a lot of ways it's easier to have 2 or 3 I think - the pressure is certainly off you a little bit when it comes to entertaining - even chucking them out in the garden is easy as they run round together. I remember struggling when I only had ds1 as he always wanted me to do things with him but it's not so bad now.

Don't worry about his development either - he is learning from everything around him every day and he'll learn at his own pace. I read tons and tons when I only had ds1 but ds2 and ds3 haven't had nearly as much one to one attention but they are developing and coming on exactly the same.

Sorry, rambled a bit there, but chin up - I'm sure you are doing a great job and it's totally normal to feel like you are doing crap one sometimes - we all feel like that sometimes!

I'm on MN for example while all 3 are whining! Time to go!

WestCountryLass Mon 11-Apr-05 20:08:37

Hav eyou thought about Tumble Tots, Jo jingles etc? You can always take him swimming and to local places of interest too. Just jabbering away about what you are doing is enough for their speech, even if it is about pairing socks and hoovering the carpet

dropinthe Tue 12-Apr-05 07:29:47

Have been thinking about this since I woke up and have made myself feel really guilty as I dont give my 14 month half the attention that you do in respect of allocating different times for different toys/activities etc-he gets alot of one to one time with me as I am a SAHM but I think I need to do more with him.
The best £30.00 I ever spent was on a baby walker with toys on the front as thats how I got my kitchen clean everyday and the dinner cooked some days-he just toddled around me happily feeling like he was part of my world. Worth a try?
Hope you are feeling better today after getting all the advice you did from the lovely mnetters yesterday-we all think you are doing far too much already!!

HappyDaddy Tue 12-Apr-05 08:10:07

I've been through this myself, as have most of you. My dd, 10.5 months, is the same cos she's going through the separation anxiety thing. We do stay in the house a lot but the health visitor said she was getting along just fine as she was getting plenty of attention from me, so yours will be fine too.
Also, I find that putting her in her high chair or playpen in view of me if I'm doing stuff helps keep her calm as she knows where i am. If i have to do housework upstairs, i usually have to let her cry for a few minutes while I whizz through my chores. It seems to be working as she's not so panicky when I leave the room anymore. Hope that helps and doesn't contradict what everyone else has said!

bobbybob Tue 12-Apr-05 08:11:32

Go out with him and talk to him about what you see. I find groups hard work, so I know what you mean about cliquey. I love going out with ds, just the two of us (and whoever we meet.)

Feed the ducks, pick daisies, go on the swings at the park. If you walk to the park the whole thing could kill a couple of hours, you would get some exercise.

If it rains make some biscuits or some sausage rolls or something. He will need a lot of help, but it's an activity that takes more than 5 minutes and you can eat the results (well maybe).

Teach him now to put away toys. Make a game of getting them all out and putting them back - you will be glad you did later on!

Read him stories. This is the single best thing for speech development. Have a trip to the library and sit down and read some books there. Again this activity can kill a lot of time, depending on how far away the library is. Also set him up with a pile of books at home and read a book or magazine alongside him, while he "reads" his.

In what ways does your dp play with him?

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