hmm question ~ is this abuse?? Sleeping while children play... - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-30-2006, 11:09 PM
 
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I don't want you to feel hurt. It sounds like you have a lot to deal with, and some of it obviously very unpleasant... I read your intro bit... I hope it all smoothes out soon. This was a hot button topic, obviously... people have widely varying opinions... it's good that they come up every now and then, so we can try to embrace our differences, learn from other's successes and mistakes, including sometimes, that we end up feeling just the same way we did when the discussion began.

So, let's not argue about who was right and who was wrong. Let's just say I'm right and forget about it.

TOTALLY KIDDING!!
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Old 12-30-2006, 11:15 PM
 
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Oops, I posted that too fast, before I could sign...

Seriously, totally kidding about "being right." That was a greeting card that I bought several years ago, and I just bust out laughing anytime I think of it, like in moments like this when I don't really want to say sorry, but, maybe I should, and so I thought of it...

VF
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Old 12-30-2006, 11:18 PM
 
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I don't want you to feel hurt. It sounds like you have a lot to deal with, and some of it obviously very unpleasant... I read your intro bit... I hope it all smoothes out soon. This was a hot button topic, obviously... people have widely varying opinions... it's good that they come up every now and then, so we can try to embrace our differences, learn from other's successes and mistakes, including sometimes, that we end up feeling just the same way we did when the discussion began.

So, let's not argue about who was right and who was wrong. Let's just say I'm right and forget about it.

TOTALLY KIDDING!!
I think she is absoluly right here, I guess there is no right and no wrong here. Everyone parents their own way, some would let their kids play and some would not. Like VF said here, I hope things get better for you soon, and please dont be hurt by this thread. HUGS!
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Old 12-30-2006, 11:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, let's not argue about who was right and who was wrong. Let's just say I'm right and forget about it.!!
naw actually i get where you're coming from.


thanks all.

it is still interesting hearing what other people do!
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Old 12-30-2006, 11:47 PM
 
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I think that when we become single parents, things just change for us. For many of us, it is dramatic. I'm not sure the choices I've made would be the same if my hubby were coming home everynight and there to pick up some of the slack. I know that since separating, I expect more from my kids and I believe they have become more independent as a result. I know what feels comfortable for them and for me....we have certain boundaries and things that work for us. Would this work for someone else? Who knows...but it's really something that only the parent can really assess.
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Old 12-31-2006, 12:25 AM
 
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i just had to come on and say that VF your ...em..apology...: was very sweet and compassionate. i was almost not oging to come back to this thread for fear of tomato hurling, but that was a very pleasant exchange to read, both AK and yours.



feel the love, guys, just feel the love!!!!!





no seriously. really do.
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Old 12-31-2006, 01:14 PM
 
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i was just really struck by how many people think it's terrible of me to do it. (what mother likes being judged?? -- while *i* don't see what i'm doing as "wrong" it stings to know that so many other people do.)
I understand completely.

But no matter what you do with your kids, there will be people who criticize you for it. I've been criticized for not circing my boys. I've been criticized for homeschooling, and now unschooling. People have judged me because, after my ex and I split up, I started dating (I should focus on my kids and not worry about men, etc.)

I have a couple of relatives who think that children under the age of 10 or so are too young to have sleepovers, and so they thought it was wrong for us to let our boys have them or attend them.

My ex-inlaws think we're wrong for not indocrinating our kids into religious thinking. Probably at least half the world agrees with them.

And of course, I used sposies on my boys and they were in daycare full-time when they were small. And I only nursed them each for six months. So I'm a terrible mama according to MDC standards.

Et cetera.

My line of thinking is.....f@#% 'em.

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Old 12-31-2006, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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... no matter what you do with your kids, there will be people who criticize you for it.
oh man that is SO TRUE. and it SUCKS.


i got criticzed (( and HARSHLY )) for not being able to breastfeed my son.

then i got very harsh criticism for nursing my daughter, and then for CONTINUING to nurse her past 6 months / 1 year / 2 years ...

i got criticized by people for not weaning her after my surgery when i had to be on all the post-surgery meds...

and the i got criticized for weaning her when i had to take OTHER meds that aren't safe. :


schooling was another huge one. i got so many rude remarks for hs'ing my son..... and then once i put him in public school i got criticized for THAT.

i got criticized for NOT having them in day care... and now that they'll be going into day care come january i've gotten bad remarks about that.


you name it, there are people who will judge it.


mamas these days just can't win.
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Old 01-01-2007, 12:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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wow, after the story about the toddler on the highway, i'm thinking about adding another lock.... and an alarm ..... and an extra gate to my door before i sleep in again. i know i'm a light sleeper but that's so sad and scary.
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Old 01-01-2007, 02:25 PM
 
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My son is 4 and has always been a super early riser. I've always gotten up when he did, even if that was really early. I'm lucky in that I could nap with him, most days, so I would just wait to sleep until we could do it together!

Once he hit somewhere around 3.5, I started letting him get up and play alone. I would not say I'm really asleep, but I do stay in bed some weekend mornings and cat nap. I'll get up with him, get him a drink and maybe a little snack, tell him I'm going to lay back down for an hour or two, and he will play pretty well by himself. We are in a small apartment, my door is open and he comes and gets me from time to time if he needs something. I feel totally ok with it, and the chance to sleep past 5am on a Saturday is AMAZING!

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Old 01-01-2007, 02:42 PM
 
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I don't think it's abuse or neglect at all, as long as you know that your children are in a safe part of the house and as long as you are available to them if they need you. That said, I could never do it myself. At least not right now. My dd gets into EVERYTHING. Even in a completely child proofed room she will find something dangerous to get into. So no rest for me.
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Old 01-01-2007, 05:15 PM
 
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that freeway story was freaky and what a lucky child everyone was able to swerve out of the way. She got arrested!!
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Old 01-01-2007, 09:17 PM
 
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The freeway toddler mama said he had gotten out before. That sounds like a totally different situation.
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Old 01-03-2007, 04:43 AM
 
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I used to work nights and xh worked days so that we didn't need daycare...this meant I needed to be a day sleeper. I would put a baby gate up at the end of the hallway with a string of cow bells on it to alert me to a climber. Then the kid's door would be open, my bedroom door open and the bathroom door closed. I fed the breakfast when I got home, then hearded them into their room to play and went to bed myself. Then I'd sleep for about 4 hours, until noon....get up and make them lunch and spend some time with them. Xh would get home around 4pm and I'd go back to bed until I had to get ready for work at about 10pm. XH would make dinner, bathe the kids and put them to bed. I think there are situations where ya gotta do what ya gotta do. I did NOT let them wander the entire apartment by themselves though. They could only access their room and my room...and older sds could get into the bathroom to potty. I was soooo glad when I was able to stay home...that only lasted a few months before I left him though

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Old 01-03-2007, 04:53 AM
 
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As long as one gets up when asked for something I don't think there is anything wrong with it.

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Old 01-03-2007, 04:54 AM
 
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i'm unlucky i guess in that if i run the water for a bath / shower it wakes my kids up. :
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That's pretty much my experience. If I roll out of her reach in the bed, she screams like she's be abandoned, so I wouldn't know...

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Old 01-03-2007, 09:15 AM
 
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Interesting thread. I've been trying to figure this out lately. I have on a couple of occasions napped on the sofa while my kids played in the room. I never really fall asleep and I can hear what they are up to. But the rest has helped. I am having another baby soon and I have no idea how I am going to deal with the sleep deprivation if this baby is like dd! She woke up and fed every 45 minutes until she was 15 months old. :
I don't have a problem with napping with my kids in the room when I am deperate for sleep. I know that if one of them does something against the rules then the other will be only too delighted to announce it in a loud voice!

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Old 01-03-2007, 11:49 AM
 
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Gosh, my friends and I regularly babysat kids at this age - staying alone in a house with small children or babies until the parents came home at midnight or 1:00 in the morning. We certainly didn't need anyone to put us to bed .


Yeah, me too!!

Why shouldn`t a 10 or 12 year old be capable of going to bed by himself/herself if they are ok with that?


I do NOT think it is abusive to sleep for a little while while your child is awake. As long as you are not very far away, the house is childproofed, you are not a heavy sleeper etc. I don`t do this myself, but that is because my child has anxiety issues and would be very scared if I wasn`t there with him. I HAVE fallen asleep on the couch when he was watching a DVD a few times, however. And have no problem with this at all.

And I would personally feel that I was overprotecting my child if I dind`t allow him to be alone in a room until he was 5-6 years old. But maybe things are different here in Norway? It`s not unusual for parents here to let their kids watch a little tv alone in the morning on weekends.

Do you all really stay in the same room as them ALL the time? Don`t they ever play alone in another room? What about when you are making dinner, cleaning around the house etc? Do they have to stop what they are doing and follow you around? Not trying to be rude, just curious.

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Old 01-03-2007, 12:41 PM
 
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Well I'm pretty late to this one, but wanted to add that I usually do not get up at the same time as my son in the morning...he's five now, but he's been getting up by himself for a year or more. He has a sippy cup of juice and he watches whatever's on PBS (kids' shows). Our apartment is small so where I'm dozing is 6 feet from the living room and the door is open. I've always been a light sleeper so any noise he makes jolts me awake. But when he's going through a phase of waking every single day at 6am, there is just no way I'm getting up that early! Likewise, if I'm feeling really dragged out during the day, I'll put in a video for him so I can snooze a bit. This isn't often, but sometimes a girl gets tired! Of course, as a baby, I was up 24/7 with him, and I actually am the type that tends to hover a bit, with him. But at home, I know what he's up to, I know he can't get outside (heavy bolt up high), it's a very small apartment, and while I don't *rely* on the fact, he is actually pretty careful.

Many of my married mom friends do exactly the same thing!

On the other hand, I would feel nervous if my ex did this, only because like some other posters mentioned, he is completely dead to the world when he sleeps. Absolutely nothing can wake him up. Plus, his place is not really childproofed.

It all depends on the kid, the parent, and the environment.
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Old 01-03-2007, 05:07 PM
 
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Old 01-03-2007, 06:13 PM
 
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I'm late, but I'll add my opinion. My daughter (16 months) and I live in a very small apartment (2 rooms and a bathroom) and she has the run of the main area of the place. This means she is sometimes out of sight but always quite close.

I have been showering with her awake and playing since just before her first birthday (prior to that she got in the shower with me every time.) I don't run the water when she is sleeping, too loud, and she sleeps in my bed and can get out herself anyway so quite honestly trying to shower when she is sleeping is somewhat riskier since I could think she was sleeping when she was really awake walking around I suppose.

The co-sleeping is actually an additional point; she has been able to get out of bed herself since 7 months, so (since I don't always sit in her room while she sleeps) she has ultimately been unattended then, too.

I don't sleep when she is awake unless she is in bed with me watching TV; if she gets up, I get up. I also refuse to leave the apartment without her in my arms (some friends have suggested that I run to the car or check the mail while she sleeps and I don't feel comfortable with it) and I never leave her in the tub -- two things not brought up but I thought I'd throw them in.

This is the arrangement that works for us and I feel safe and comfortable with it. I will add that my apartment is baby/toddler-proof to the absolute hilt, but accidents can happen anywhere. I don't feel neglectful in any way.
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Old 01-03-2007, 06:38 PM
 
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Can I post here? I'm not a single parent (and I haven't read the entire thread)... so here goes.

When I am home alone with them and exhausted, yeah, I'm a single parent.

There have been a handful of times when I'm wiped out and NEED to sleep during the day, no adults around. I turn on a kids movie or PBS and they'll watch in the room with me (on the bed) while I take a needed cat nap or whatever sleep I can manage. It usually helped tremendously.

But no, I would never let them play alone downstairs or something, with me upstairs sleeping deeply. My best compromise is that they have to stay in the room with me.

Showers - no TV (I try to limit it as much as possible, I do not encourage it.)

They'll play in the other rooms (I am awake and can hear them) or she'll stay in the bathroom with me (decide to bath with me or not) and sometimes the 3 of us with bathe together - no biggie.

AM Showers - yeah, sometimes she'll wake up screaming for me and comes in crying with her pjs. I'll tell her I'll be right with her and she can stay in the room with me or go lie down and wait for me. Best I can do! But they have to wake up anyway and so I'll shower anyway if I feel like it.

There was a story in the paper just yesterday about how some 3-year-old was found in a diaper wandering through TRAFFIC and motorists stopped to help him. The mother was home sleeping and was charged with child endangerment. Sad. (She sounds neglectful to begin with.)

http://cbs2.com/national/topstories_...365194331.html

My worse fear is that they make their way outside and drown (we have a pool) or get hit by a car or something. Best I can do is keep them in the room with me if I am out of it (asleep). If not, then I can hear them and I know where they are at all times and what they are doing. But if I am asleep I can't hear squawk. So, best I can do is keep them in the room with me.

While I refrain from name-calling "that's abusive!" I will just say I don't think it's a wise idea to sleep and have the kids up and about with no one else awake.

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Old 01-03-2007, 06:46 PM
 
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On the wandering in traffic...

When we moved to our current apartment, I was dismayed to find that the door has a french door, lever-type handle rather than a knob. DD can reach the handle and pull it easily. She cannot reach the deadbolt, but I don't trust myself let alone a sitter etc. to be sure the deadbolt is thrown 100% of the time. This was a huge focus of mine and the door now has both a kiddie-lock and an inexpensive, if annoying , chime on it.
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Old 01-03-2007, 07:27 PM
 
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When I am home alone with them and exhausted, yeah, I'm a single parent.
I am NOT trying to pick on you and I know this is somewhat off-topic (but not completely) and I also know you were kidding but it always bothers me when people say this. I think it's cause I'm feeling especially single-parentish these days. It's not the same if you know there is respite on the horizon. I am currently undergoing a period of almost burnout with zero breaks from the kids for even five minutes for weeks now. No financial support emotional support and sick kids as well as being sick myself. I spent christmas morning in the emergency room with my son AND cooked a big christmas dinner for guests and and ourselves all on the same day. All that while dealing with an abusive almost dead-beat dad. I think it *is* different for ingle parents and we need to parent differently. If I didn't sleep sometimes while my kids were still up, I would become very, very ill. I'm not saying I wouldn't do it f I was partnered but I don't think I would do it nearly as often because I wouldn't need to.
Blech., I'm sorry if this is coming off as harsh, it's not meant to but it's just hard sometimes.
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Old 01-03-2007, 08:43 PM
 
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I agree with Mamajama. When anyone's alone with the kids, yes, they're the only one on duty so of course have to be on the alert. And all Moms work super hard to the point of exhaustion, married or single! But it's not the same as being a single parent. Even if I was sitting here with two broken legs and pneumonia, then too darn bad for me, I can't call anyone to come home. I think that's the biggest difference.
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Old 01-03-2007, 10:38 PM
 
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When DH and I were separated we would drop DS off before he went to work and I was just getting off the night shift. Now DS1 would sleep a few hours but there were times when he would play and eat a snack while I dozed on the couch an hour longer (then I would nap after he got picked up) I don't think there was anything wrong with it, the house was kid safe, child locks on the doors so he couldn't get out etc.

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Old 01-03-2007, 10:43 PM
 
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I think it all depends on the situation.My dc are 5 and 8,and yes I do sleep sometimes when they are up.I hear everything they do,and they always ask me for things they need or want.Ds will watch a dvd or play V-smile in my room while dd is on my computer,which is also in my room.Dd will make her brother and herself breakfast(using either the microwave or toaster,or something that doesn't need to be cooked,I knew how to cook at her age,but I don't allow her to use the stove).Sometimes they play in their room,which is right near mine,or watch tv in there.I have all the stations blocked except for Nick,Disney,and Sprout so they are limited on what they can watch.

I don't sleep all day of course,and I don't do it everyday.Once in a while if I am very tired,or sick.If I have my 2yo neice(her mom is a single mom too,and needs to work so sometimes I have to care for her no matter how bad I feel),I will put the baby gate up so that she can only go between my room and dc's room.Dd will keep an eye on her,but that is only for a few minutes so I can just close my eyes to let my meds kick in to get rid of a headache,I don't actually sleep.

My dc have gotten into more things while I am pooping or showering than when I've been sleeping.The one time ds needed staples,was when I was taking a very quick shower.I had him in the living room,which I thought was completly baby proofed(he was about 14 months).Somehow he cut his head open.To this day we still have no idea how,as there was nothing sharp in that room at all.They've cut each other's hair : while I was pooping.Ds has thrown yogurt all over my kitchen,ripped books apart,colored all over himself,etc while I was taking care of dd.

There are times when I have to leave them alone for a couple of minutes.When I do laundry I have to go downstairs into my dad's apartment.I can hear my dc,but I'm not in the same apartment.I go get the mail.I take the trash out.I bring the groceries in.I try to do most of these things when they are in school now,but it doesn't always work out that way.I had to do all these things when they were toddlers too.Most of the time I'd take them with me,but I can't carry groceries and laundry with a child in my arms.I'd always put them in a safe place,usually the pack and play,and I was never gone for more than a couple of minutes.I would usually carry the baby monitor with me.

At my dd's age I was walking to and from school alone,and coming home to an empty house. I won't do that to my dc.I don't consider napping while dc are up to be neglect or abuse,unless the children are not fed,changed,or taken care of.If the parent is doing drugs,or something like that and the children are not taken care of,then of course it is abuse and neglect.

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Old 01-03-2007, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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yeah i was going to say that mamajama. i hate hearing other mothers say that... it bugs me because (as previously mentioned in the solo- thread) i don't have anyone else. i can't wait for a dp / dh / so to come home because there IS no dp / dh / so. even if i get really really sick i can't even ask their dad to take them since he's not in the picture and the only child care i have now is their Day Care, i don't even have a trusted baby sitter anymore. i'm It.
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Old 01-04-2007, 02:16 AM
 
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Originally Posted by KristiMetz View Post
(Also, people, especially on this board, throw around the A word (abuse) a LOT more easily than they should... JMO.)
: I REALLY have to agree with the above.

Different parenting choices or standards does not mean abuse.

-Janna, independent mother of dd, Ms. Mattie Sky born on my 25th birthday, 06*23*2000. My Mama Feb.21,1938-Sept.10,2006
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Old 01-05-2007, 12:41 AM
 
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Wow, I hope my dd (3yo) isn't getting scarred by all the time I spend not in the same room with her! Like, when I'm making food and she's playing in the other room. Or when I have to pee and I don't make her come to the bathroom with me. Or a million other times a day when I'm trying to manage to have a household that's semi-functional and a life that doesn't involve debtor's prison or the loony bin.
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