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Be honest - how much time to you spend playing/interacting with your little one/s??

(64 Posts)
mandymoo Sun 17-Jul-05 21:33:37

I am on a massive guilt trip as i just dont seem to find the time to sit down and just play with dd (who is 2.8). I am also a bit frustrated as she doesnt play on her own much so i am trying to get her to do that. Also i am starting a new job on wed (2 days a week one week and 3 days the other) and am feeling soooo guilty. How much time do you spend with your child/ren?? I take her to groups and we go to the beach and stuff but just dont do much of the sitting down in the lounge and playing. Do I have an idealistic view or is this just how it is??

QueenOfQuotes Sun 17-Jul-05 21:37:21

I hardly do any 'sitting down in the lounge and playing" - just not 'me' (and my boys aren't fussed etiher - I "Get in the way" of DS1's (nearly 5) games - I DO however spend time with both my children in other ways. They 'help' me around the house, when we go shopping I talk to them about what we're doing, what they can see etc etc, I admire DS1's 'art' from nursery and I spend a lot of time 'watching' them play.

Dior Sun 17-Jul-05 21:37:54

Message withdrawn

mandymoo Sun 17-Jul-05 21:44:54

we spend lots of time doing thigs together - we do housework together and like q of q we talk about things as we go shopping and stuff. We go for walks, go to groups, bake cakes, do crafty things etc....... just don't do the playing thing much and was beginning to think i was neglecting my poor wee child!!!!!!!

Despite having enough toys to open my own local branch of elc, dd prefers helping me around the house etc. We do puzzles and stuff but she rarely sits on her own and plays.

Good to know i'm not an evil mum

essbee Sun 17-Jul-05 21:46:46

Message withdrawn

WestCountryLass Sun 17-Jul-05 21:50:33

Phew! I am so relieved to see I am not alone in not 'playing' with my kids.

I spend every waking moment of their days with them (besides when DS is at pre-school) but I nrarely play with their toys with them.

Once up and dressed we tend to go out, then DS is at pre-school in the afternoon and I take DD to softplay or swimming and the like and then by the time we get home and I prepare the tea we are then almost in the bedtime routine.

Personally I think their toys are for them to play with and keep themselves busy when I am hanging out the washing or wotnot kwim?

jessicaandbumpsmummy Sun 17-Jul-05 21:50:42

Jess is actually very independent for her age, and doesnt like me playing with her all that much. She prefers to be able to paly and explore by herself. We do sit and play for probably 30-45mins in the morning or afternoon 121, but usually involves me making duplo buildings for her to pull apart, or build up her stacking cups for her to knock down!

If im on the computer, she will play happily, and come to find me every 5-10 mins to check im still around before crawling away again!

QueenOfQuotes Sun 17-Jul-05 21:52:43

Oh and when I take DS2 to toddler groups I don't sit and play with him then either - he goes and entertains himself...........for me a toddler group is as much 'me' time (chatting to my friends, other mums) as it is time for him to let off steam and trash someone elses hall/toys LOL

expatinscotland Sun 17-Jul-05 21:54:01

From 5.45 - 8PM straight thru during the week; as much as possible at weekends.

Flum Sun 17-Jul-05 21:55:02

I am a newly SAHM. I probably play with her for about half to one hour per day. Much more at weekends when I don't do any housework and much less cooking. Mostly she plays in sandpit alone or looks at books. she's 17 months

i also read to her for about half an hour most nights. but not if I can't be arsed

fqueenzebra Sun 17-Jul-05 21:55:08

I think you're doing really well, Mandymoo. I had 3 close together & it's very hard for me to give any of them 1-to-1, or to play with them, certainly not for long stretches. I am thinking of putting the 1yo in with childminder once a fortnight just so I can give the 3yo some 1-to-1 attention....

Made bix with the 5yo, made paper crowns for the 3yo, and chased the 1yo around in the garden today, which is pretty amazing for me. But probably far less than 30 min total each child.

jessicaandbumpsmummy Sun 17-Jul-05 21:55:10

QOQ - agree re toddler group - hence i go 3 times a week now - thats 6 hours a week of adult daytime conversation - not just hubby talk in the evening!

Jess will crawl off and play at todlers and loves it!

katymac Sun 17-Jul-05 21:57:33

As a childminder, one of the first judgements i make about a child is whether they can play by themselves or not.

If they can we work on group activities and if they can't i try to teach them to be independant.

If I have a very young baby I try to foster both skills from an early age

QueenOfQuotes Sun 17-Jul-05 22:00:33

Actually just read the title again - thought it just said 'playing' - but then noticed the interacting - I spend most of my day (when the boys aren't sleeping/at nurser) interacting with them....even when I'm up here on the computer DS1 will often shout things up the stairs to me and I'll reply.

mandymoo Sun 17-Jul-05 22:01:06

I love spending time with her and we do loads of stuff together - at toddlers she is going through a clingy phase and i tend to end up playing with her all the time we're there. So i guess thats one to one playtime. I guess before i had her i just had this picture of hours of playing every day. JUst find it hard to fit it in with the daily chores XX

mandymoo Sun 17-Jul-05 22:02:33

katymac - what advice could you give me to encourage dd to play on her own more??

jessicaandbumpsmummy Sun 17-Jul-05 22:02:49

oh yeah, didnt notice the title! i would say i interact with jess pretty much 24/7 minus naps! even if im on the computer and she is palying, i talk to her from where i sit and she babbles back.... if im in the same room, i always chat to her to see what she is doing.

when we go shopping, im sure people look at me as if im crazy coz im walking round saying stuff liek "shall we get such and such for daddy/tea/lunch" etc!

emily05 Sun 17-Jul-05 22:03:42

katymac - just curious (would love to know) how you teach them to be independent? This would be handy to know

fqueenzebra Sun 17-Jul-05 22:06:13

no disrespect to Katymac, but presumably she'll agreee... kids are different with childminders than they are with their parents. My kids would play much better by themselves when with childminder but not so well if I was there -- because my kids have an insatiable appetite for my attention whereas childminder isn't such a focus for their emotions/security, etc.

katymac Sun 17-Jul-05 22:07:28

I sit in a chair (feeding a baby, or changing a nappy or cooking the lunch - just like eveyone else and say why don't you play with (the jigsaw/doll/dress up) while I......

Then just offer helpful comments and help if they can't manage something.

Then it's just repetition,repetition,repetition (to misquote)
We had a child who was incapable of playing by herself and it took nearly 4 months - but she started nursery and they complimented her Mum on how well she layed by herself.

What age is yours?

katymac Sun 17-Jul-05 22:08:51

wouldn't argue with that at all - but the child who needs one2one help with playing will not be popular at Nursery or school and the skills they need can be started by the parents from a very young age

QueenOfQuotes Sun 17-Jul-05 22:10:30

I agree with Katymac's suggestion - DS1 until around 2yrs old was very clingy - he'd stand next to me for virtually the whole toddler group - and I point blank refused to take him to the toys......eventually he got fed up of it - and by the time he actually turned 2 he would go straight off and play.

Never had that problem with DS2 - I rather wish he'd at least come and give say 'hello" occasionaly LOL

fqueenzebra Sun 17-Jul-05 22:10:48

What I know is that both DD and DS1 play on their own better if I'm not around at all... Nursery has said this to me many times wrt DD. You can't assume that your child who is reluctant to play on their own when you're around can't play on their own at all.

peaceandlight Sun 17-Jul-05 22:12:47

I wish i could get ds2 to play by himself , he's 6.
I am willing to play with him but of course can't do all the time and i think it would be so much happier for him if he could be content to play by himself...but he just won't.

mumfor1sttime Sun 17-Jul-05 22:13:48

I have always wondered if I spent enough time doing things with ds, who is 6.5 mths. I work 3 hours a day, and get tired as start at 6 am. We interact through feeding times (weaning at mo) and through playing games such as peepo etc. He does play alone on his baby gym too.

He is rolling at the mo so loves being on floor amusing himself this is when I make a cuppa!

If im doing chores I chat to him constantly and he likes that, he is scared of the hoover though and cries when I use it!

Anyway back to question - probably most of the day!

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