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Visitation place ideas?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

My ex and I are starting visitation again after about a year, and we've set up a schedule of visits twice each month.  A couple weeks ago, DD and I met him at a kid cafe/toy store near our home because it had a play area.  During the visit, he just watched DD play and told me he was very nervous and didn't know what to do; he didn't interact with her much. Afterward, he  told me in an email that the kid cafe was too distracting for DD (who is almost 2), and that we should pick another place. We're meeting at the park this weekend, but it looks like it might rain, so it would be good to have some alternatives. It's a little frustrating, though, because any place that DD finds interesting, X calls distracting, and when I try to keep DD's attention on X (for example by keeping her at the table where he and I are sitting), she fusses because she doesn't have enough of a relationship with him to want to interact with him.

 

Suggestions for a neutral place (not either person's home) to meet?

 

 

Some ideas I had:

Family study room at the university library (but it has toys, so DD might be too distracted)

Going to the park anyway, with jackets and DD's umbrella

Indoor pool at the gym (but DD is partially afraid of water, and X doesn't read her signals well, so he might freak out when she freaks out when he tries to take her deeper than the steps into the pool. I'm not sure if telling him to stay on the steps would help)

Local kids' museum (also probably distracting)

post #2 of 6

He needs to get on the ground and interact and play with her. It is not her job to entertain him. IT DRIVES ME NUTS! My hole family both sides is like this. They come over and expect my 1.5 yearold to jump in their lap and tell them about his day.
 

She will be perpetually distracted she is 2. Unless you play a game like "Draw on daddy with markers"  Hes probably not going to be the focus of her attention. Especially with how little relationship they have to start with.

 

Its going to take time for them to get used to each other.

post #3 of 6
Ditto what the PP said. He clearly has no idea what to expect of a two year old. They are by definition, petty much always distracted. He needs to just give her some time to get used to his presence and then he can just throw himself into whatever she is doing.
post #4 of 6
I agree with the PPs. In fact a "distracting" place is probably better because, if he doesn't know what to do, he can just follow her lead or point things out or do the activity with her. I'd find it much harder to cope with a 2yo I didn't know well if there was also nothing to do.

OP, I also agree with you that the pool probably isn't a good idea for now. It's sounds like it would be setting them both up to fail. Although it might be a good option once they're more comfortable with each other. IME dads, in general, seem to enjoy/be good at the physical stuff.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input and confirming what I had been thinking.  Today we met at the park (it wasn't too rainy), and while DD was distracted, X seemed to realize he could take part by following her around.  I'll see if I get an email from him about it, and if it is a problem, I will use some of the points that PPs brought up.

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by katelove View Post

I agree with the PPs. In fact a "distracting" place is probably better because, if he doesn't know what to do, he can just follow her lead or point things out or do the activity with her. I'd find it much harder to cope with a 2yo I didn't know well if there was also nothing to do.

OP, I also agree with you that the pool probably isn't a good idea for now. It's sounds like it would be setting them both up to fail. Although it might be a good option once they're more comfortable with each other. IME dads, in general, seem to enjoy/be good at the physical stuff.

 

My two year old son has his visitation with his father in a public library, in the children's room.  There are usually toys in a children's library and books they can read together.  A two year old is gonna be distracted... and so they should be, as that's developmentally appropriate for that age.  Dad's just gonna have to learn to work with your daughter at whatever developmental stage she is, throughout her life.

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