How do you get time out with out the 'Its not Fair'..(11 Posts)
Hi All, I just wondered how you all achieve this. Its mentioned time and again on threads here that people in Blended familes will do seperate things, to get some one on one time with your own child or just as a sanity check etc...
Its been a tough contact weekend with DSC to say the least and I have dropped off my DS this morning to school (now has 2 nights with his DD) feeling a bit flat at the lack of time I have had with him over the weekend due to all children being high maintenance (including mine) for lots of reasons.
Anyway my next weekend i want to have an afternoon away from the house with just me and DS maybe do cinema together or something, however i know Im going to get the 'its not fair' from the DSC, i cant so much as buy a chuppa lolly for my DS after school without fear of them sniffing out the stick in the bin and being given the 'Its not fair'.. Dont get me wrong Im very fair (to the point im paranoid about it) and its dricing me crazy :O
Any tips on this area, im despeate for some one on one time but without the headache of a military operation just to do it?
i think you can justifiably say to them (suppose it depends how old they are) that it is important, even though you all live together some of the time, for you and your DS to spend some time with just eachother. And that it is also important for them to spend some time just with their dad. I think it doesn't always have to be a "treat" thing. I'd also get stick here if I took only my DCs to the cinema, and the DSCs had to stay here with their dad and do nothing. I could see their point then!
Re buying lollies, if you're buying for DS and not them, but then coming back to the house when they are there, then I agree to an extent that isn't fair - you are treating your DS, but not them and if they are there, why not buy them one too?
I fell into the trap of thinking we all had to do everything together at first, but actually we are all happier if sometimes we go off and do separate things.
What does your DP think? I am assuming your DS is a bit outnumbered by the DSC?
Think you are perhaps over-thinking "fair". Fair isn't always everyone having exactly the same, it's sometimes everyone having what they need.
I don't go with the fair route, if we are going out or buy treats from shop for example then all the children get but if my brother takes ds out then that's what happens I just tend to now say that they do things just with their mum too like ds does. I don't tend to plan things on days we are all together but sometimes it happens that's life. in the same way though I have been known to just take sd out for some time away and would expect my ds to understand that too. I am fair to a point but you can't be totally same for everyone.
I should say re lolly example that I wouldn't buy him one and not the others, I pick DS up from school where as DP picks DSC up later after work. I wouldn't as I'm in the garage necessarily think to grab them all one as well, when it's just a pacifier for DS whilst we run an errand. I have tried to explain that sometimes they will do things with their mum which of course DS wouldn't but it doesn't seem to compute.
They will even complain if I take DS away whilst they are at DMs to visit family....
Your right that I'm probably over thinking it but I don't want anyone to feel things are in fair however I need to be able on occasion do things separately without it being an issue.
DP is generally supportive when I have done it in the past but I have had to approach with caution as he will sometimes seem offended that I don't want to spend every minute altogether!
Similar issues in my household - DSC come every weekend and are similar ages to my DCs, so hard to do fun things with just mine. We've just had a pretty full on weekend too (with all 6 of the DCs and DSCs in the house, plus 4 of my DS's friends for birthday sleepover) so I know what you mean about longing for a bit of time with just "us"
I have gone for the "need to take DCs on boring shopping trip to buy new clothes/shoes/etc" which the DSC don't automatically try and crash in on. That's worked. Once out, we can then also go to a café, or have a bit of a walk together (as well as shopping, obviously)
Personally, I wouldn't choose a cinema trip as a one to one social thing, as you won't get much quality time with your DS there anyway - you'll be watching a film - so might be better to take DSC to the cinema and try and do something with DS that they won't enjoy, or you can at least sell to them as something they won't enjoy. Am contemplating a camping or hostelling weekend in the summer with just my two, as DSC don't do outdoorsy stuff so much.
I'd ignore completely their complaints about you doing things with DS when they're off at their DMs to visit family. They do need to learn that other people have a life when they're not there.
Thanks Purpleroses, some good ideas there. I have spoken to DP this evening and i am now going away at Easter for a few days and then again in summer holidays with just DS which I'm really looking forward to.
For weekends I will follow your advice of something low key, it's not every w/end I'm wanting the one on one time but sometimes or when it's
Proving to be a particularly hard weekend then I will take DS to visit my Df but then we could visit the shopping centre right by him after for a wonder and stop for hot chocolate etc
Your right cinema isn't a good example as not very social its sometimes the mundane things I quite miss doing together just the 2 of us.
DP is away working from tomorrow so I have a couple of days just us now this week to make up some one on one time
I agree; you need to be clear that life continues in their absence. If I have my DSD and my own kids at the same time I include them all as far as possible but I don't compensate DSD for things I get / do with my kids when she's with her Mum. I simply say "I'm sure you've done some lovely things with Mummy over the weekend" or "I'm sure you've had some treats from Mummy while you've been there" etc when she complains about it not being "fair"
Re. the time alone - great that you've booked your time away. I do it too. I tell my DH he can spend a weekend with his daughter while I take our younger 2 kids away for a bit. My DH isn't always over the moon about it but actually I think it's important he spends time alone with DSD too.
I know what you mean about getting obsessed with everything being fair - I've been there but the reality is, life's not fair...
I understand this very well.
Dp now takes his kids out and leaves ds and I at home so dsc don't feel left out but I also take ds out to do mundane things like purple roses suggests but also to do a fun thing that dp and kids have never learnt to do.
I think it can be "fair" as long as dsc get time with their parent too.
I must be a right mean stepmum because my answer to the DC's whines of "its not fair" is "TOUGH!". They need to learn that life is not always 'fair' whether in a step family or a 'normal' family. Unfortunately that is one of life's lessons we all have to learn.
We do plenty of things as a 'family' but from day one I have always insisted that DP and I each spend time with our own kids. We have had both taken our respective out alone, whether it is for a weeks holiday or sometimes just out for lunch. The kids need that time with one parent and so do we.
They now all accept that they have different parents and do different things with each of them. The only time the SDC get a bit stroppy is if they hear of DP and I doing something with my dc when they are at their Mums (not fun stuff - just going to Asda or other mundane stuff). They like to assume that DPs world stops turning when they aren't there
I totally agree it's a dangerous road to go down, never doing anything when the DSCs are not there. When they aren't with you, they are doing things with their mum. Don't let your DP fall into that trap either - of not joining in with something you are doing with your DCs, just because his aren't there.
If I ever get that "it's not fair" thing (and I rarely do to be honest), I just remind them of something they've done with their mum that we didn't do. I think it helps that DSC's mum in our case is totally supportive and helpful - she wouldn't encourage them to think like that either. And neither would my ex. So we are lucky in that respect.
I also take my DCs on holiday on our own - we do an activity that my DP and his the DSCs don't do, and it is our "thing" that we do together - we did this hobby before DP came along, and no-one expects us to drop it suddenly.
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