How much focus time (your full attention) with 2 year old? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 27 Old 12-12-2010, 09:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
bcblondie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 3,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My son is 2 on Tuesday. I'm home all day, every day with him, except occasionally when I leave him with DH to go to an event or grab something from the store. So DS is around me all day long. But I know that's not the same as actually having your full attention. I constantly debate with myself how much time he needs having me right there, building blocks with him or driving cars, and whether he's got what he needs and I can go do the dishes now. lol.

I know I can read his cues, and I do. If he's pulling on me and saying "mommy" repeatedly he probably needs more. lol. But what would you guys think is average? How much do you seem to spend with your kids? Do you ALWAYS feel like it should be more? I always seem to... Stupid mommy guilt....


Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
bcblondie is offline  
#2 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 06:07 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Yes, I always feel like it should be more. Even when DS is very happily playing in the other room with DH & I'm FINALLY catching a break, I still feel like I should be out there playing with him. I guess it's just eternal 'mom guilt'....

 

DS wakes up at 10am & DH gets home at 5:30pm. Most of that time when it is just the two of us, my attention is focused on him (he's very clingy...) except when he's napping or I'm showering etc. so I would say I spend about 6+ hours a day focused on him, more if I'm having a good day & less if I'm particularly tired, moody, etc. (then I might try to read or go online for 10 minutes on & off throughout the day and spend a lot less time focused on him...) When DH gets home I'm not really focused on DS anymore (though of course I still play with him at times & all...) but the whole night I am focused on getting him to sleep & keeping him asleep, which is a monumental task, so if you add those 12+ hours in then I guess 18+ hours of my day are totally focused on him. I really have no clue what is average (though I do suspect many people don't need to spend the entire night keeping their kid asleep lol) but I think if your DS is happy & not complaining then you are doing just fine. When I run into trouble is when my DS DOES complain (which he does almost all day long no matter how much I attend to him -- he's 'high needs') but I just can't physically spend even one more second with him... then I feel quite guilty even though I'm doing the best I can. I read some articles not long ago about how kids need to see mom & dad doing 'adult' things (chores, cooking, etc.) and that if you have that sense of purpose or whatever it makes them feel more secure... plus they learn the things they will be expected to do when they get older... I'm probably paraphrasing that horribly but that's what I got out of it & I think it's a valid point & might help alleviate some of that guilt...

 

ETA: I should clarify that '6 hours of focused attention' is definitely not playing with toddler toys for 6 hours!! It's things like chasing him outside, taking him for walks, going to story hours, playgrounds, craft time, etc., reading to him, carrying him around & talking to him, etc. There really isn't much toy-playing 'cause that would drive me nuts!!!


Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#3 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 08:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
bcblondie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 3,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

That definitely does help, to know that it's good for children to see adults do chores! Thank you. And I try to involve DS in chore when I can, like laundry, or giving him a cloth when I'm wiping things down. He loves it. :)

 

I can tell you now that spending 6 plus hours a day completely focused on him, is a lot more than I do!! I guess that's the downfalls of TV. It's so easy to let him watch Tv when he asks and then sits there nicely.... and then my computer is only a few feet away! Heh...  'Course I feel guilty every second I'm on the computer! Even though I'm on here, talking about  HIM!!


Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
bcblondie is offline  
#4 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 08:48 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I know!! All the time I'm on the computer I'm talking about him, researching things for him, etc. but I still feel guilty!!!! The computer is the root of all evil for me lol ;)
 

Oh and the 6 hours a day only happens because we spend most of our time out of the house -- away from all the temptations... it's much easier to give him all my attention when we're at the library or the playground. :) Plus he demands the attention... you better believe that the minute he's happy playing by himself for any length of time, I'll be bringing a book to the playground!! lol 


Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#5 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 09:54 AM
 
Everrgreen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,817
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I wonder about this too.  I am a single parent so I don't have anyone coming at 5:30 to play with ds.  But I use internet for little escapes throughout the day (probably too much time on the internet) and lately I have been putting on a tv show for ds to watch while I shower or fix dinner.  I do spend time actively playing with him and I get him to help with chores when possible.  And he comes along for all the errands I have and to the library, and while he doesn't have my 'full' attention it is still something fun that we do together (where neither of us are staring at a computer or tv screen).  I have no idea what the actual hours/time works out to though.  Honestly, I find it a little boring to sit down and play toddler games for hours.  And my son is still not really talking so he gets really mad at me when I don't understand what my role in the game is, so then I get frustrated because our 'fun play time' has turned into ds freaking out at me.  And every attempt I have at planning a fun activity never works - todays examples:  we finally got some snow so I got him in his snowsuit (with him crying and fighting me the whole time), then he was finally happy when he went outside and rediscovered snow, but then within about 10 minutes he wanted to go back inside.  And then I thought I would make that cornstarch/water play goop, so I got ds to help make it, but he didn't want to touch it, then finally he did but then just started crying because his hand was messy.  So after all of this I needed my internet break, and then he asked to nurse, and eventually fell asleep, and I remain on my beloved internet :P  I really just think I'm not a good stay at home mom.

 

Sorry I guess I just ended up venting a little and not answering your question!


Mama to my charming little boy, born at home January '09
Everrgreen is offline  
#6 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 10:05 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gillian28 View Post

Honestly, I find it a little boring to sit down and play toddler games for hours.


Just a little boring?!? lol I'm totally with you... it's boring. Very boring!

 

And I totally have days like you just described... I go out of my way to do super fun things & DS decides to be miserable :( It stinks & really does make me feel like a bad SAHM. I hope the rest of your day goes better.


Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#7 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 10:13 AM
 
LROM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 908
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Well, whatever the true magic amount of daily time is that kids need to be with a loving, fully-attentive parent to be healthy and thriving and great, I hope doesnt' require being home all day because I'm a WOHM who works a ton and really doesn't have any other financial choice at this point.  I think me and dd who's 24 months old have a great connection and relationship, and she's doing great, but your question raised for me yet again the added concern of both parents working full time out of the home.  Sometimes it seems like you've barely picked them up from daycare and gotten them home before it's time for bed and you hardly spent any great, quality, full attention time.

 

Maybe as OP pondered it is simply a motherly trait to always worry we're not doing enough, but I guess what I'm saying is you guys who do stay home, even if you've got other things going on during the day (which of course you do), you are still probably getting more "focused quality time" with your kids than parents who WOH full time, and yet most of those kids do great too, so you probably don't need to worry.

 

But it's always good to ponder these things and seek new ways of being even better parents, so I think it's a good question!

LROM is offline  
#8 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 10:18 AM
 
GoBecGo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 3,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

When i had one kid, about 2 hours a day (completely undivided attention), now i have two, less than an hour and they are sharing it!  The baby just makes more work and that eats into my time, and i don't get time to sit down with DD1 on her own hardly at all.

 

I try to make boring-time into quality time.  I let DD help me peel/chop when i'm making dinner (yes, with real knives, but VERY closely supervised) and she helps me a LOT with the chores which i try to make fun (for example we dance the kitchen clean and fight clean sheets onto the beds).  Ultimately i think i want at least 1, maybe 2 more kids, and really, though one-to-one playtime is important, "family" time is so much more than that.  So i don't feel too guilty that i'm here telling you guys this instead of playing jenga with her....lol

GoBecGo is offline  
#9 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 10:35 AM
 
LynnolaS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 76
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I don't think there's any magic time, and if there is I'm totally screwed! : ) But I feel guilty about this a lot as well. I am learning, though, that my son (22 months) let's me know when he truly needs my attention, and the amount he needs seems to vary from day to day. Some days I can get a lot done around the house, do some sudoku puzzles, read a bit, etc. and he's content to play with intermittent check-ins with me. Other days he's super clingy. As an introvert I really love the time when he plays independently.

 

I also suspect that, like GoBecGo said, if I have a second child it will be totally different as neither child would almost ever have the luxury of my full attention!

 

For the sanity of both me and my son, we get out a lot and do stuff like grocery shopping, library hours, indoor play places when the weather is poor, playdates, etc. That way we are interacting but also fulfilling needs that both of us have for stimulation, interaction with others, etc.

But yeah, I think motherly guilt is a powerful force to reckon with! I bet the fact that you're posing this question means you're doing great, and that your babe will let you know when he needs you (when DS needs me, he's soooo not shy about letting me know!).

LynnolaS is offline  
#10 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 11:20 AM
 
t2009's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Somewhere between here & there
Posts: 580
Mentioned: 27 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)

I was just starting to stress out about this & it's really refreshing to see these "real-world" responses! I'm finishing up a crazy grad school program and for the next 6 months or so (during which DS will turn 2) I will be spending a lot of time with DS before starting a FT WOH job. I am really excited to have this special time with DS but I'm also paranoid that I won't know what to do with him during the day & that I won't be engaging him in the right ways!

 

My problem is that when I am home with him currently I (a) get bored with toddler games but (b) can't get chores & other things done either... I think I'll work on getting him engaged with chores & such more & stop worrying about the right developmental games to engage him in...

 

Thanks!


Mama to my little busy bee. 

t2009 is online now  
#11 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 12:02 PM
tzs
 
tzs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 1,624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

thank you thank you thank you!

ugh....i thought i was the only one stressing about this because in my head, every other mom is on the floor all day building castles and reading stories. i was just thinking that although i'm not super keen on the fact that dd is in daycare half-days, at least she has two people solely devoted to them at any given moment.

on top of that dh was talking about how we should maybe not have a tv in the house which made me basically flip out. i'm sorry, but i'm the one who has to spend all day every day with the kiddo and then the next one that i'm pregnant with. there's only so much time you can spend playing sorting blocks and i'm not one to do it at all when she wakes up especially early every so often. sometimes i just need that time to lie down on the couch with some background noise.


Reluctant 'Sconie, chassid and mama to sweet toughie Ada Bluma 9/9/09 and loving pittie-mix ("Judge the deed, not the breed!")
tzs is offline  
#12 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 01:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
bcblondie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 3,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Wow! Thank you all so much for the responses!! You are all so extremely helpful and I feel much less alone in this now.

 

Crunchy mommy, I have the same thing. Like today we went to the mall. He got to play in teh play area and wander around a lot and I was focused on him the whole time.) It's teh days trapped inside that are hard. If anyone has NON BORING suggestions for entertaining mom and todder together, I'd love to hear! Or maybe that should be a new thread?

 

(Gillian and cruchy) Isn't it funny how we feel guilty for feeling bored while playing with our toddler? I mean it's understandable. The mind wants to be challenged and have intelectual conversation. Building blocks is a little mind numbing for an adult. And yeah, It can be frustrating too, when we don't understand them. And that makes it so tempting just to plop them down in front of the tv.

 

Gillian, the internet is my escape too. Oh my goodness! Adult conversation!! Really, I'd freak out of we didn't have internet.

 

LROM. I'm sure it doesn't require staying at home to give your child enough attention. Sometimes I think working moms give their kid MORE attention because they value their precious little time together that much more. I myself worry that I take for granted too much that "Hey, I'm home all day, what more does he need?" Well, he needs a lot more. He needs all of me for at least a portion of a day. Not 50% of me for the entire day. But then I'm always debating how much he needs all of me.

 

GoBecGo. I agree. I want more kids too. And I know that one-on-one time will be shorter. But that's ok! Kids need siblings too! I think that actively sitting down with one child, or 2 children, is the same. Mommy is still playing with the kids. Focusing on the kids. Even if it's not 100% on the one child, kwim? For once, mommy is putting down this or that and taking time out for family. And I think that's sooo important, regardless of how many kids have to share the attention lol.

Side note. It's also great that siblings can play while mommy is busy. I hate that he only has ME to turn to. He LOVES other kids. He needs a sibling so bad.

 

Thank you LynnolaS :)

And I totally agree. I need out of the house too. At least every other day. Which is hard because I live in Canada. Winters are harsh. (minus 30 C out right now)

 

TZS. Me too! I feel like every other mom does nothing but play with their kids. But somehow also have spotless houses and healthy dinners prepared from scratch lol. I guess that's how moms like to portray themselves. But that's not fair, nor is it reality. I have to pry myself off the computer sometimes... ok a lot. Sometimes William pulls and pulls at my arm... so I put him on my lap so I can answer just one more email or 2... and then he climbs and touches stuff and I get mad at that. Well hello! He's bored and wants attention... Sigh. lol.

But it's good that kids tell you want they want!!


Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
bcblondie is offline  
#13 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 02:10 PM
 
NewMoonMum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 172
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I seem to have the opposite worry. I SAH and even with my 2 month old DD in tow, apart from his quiet time and 10 minutes here and there, it's really constant face time with us.  DH always says he feels like a "bad Dad" compared to me because of how I interact with DS all the time. But I mean ALL the time...I worry I need to work more on fostering independence, because am I making him to codependent? But then he can, and often has, spent 2 or more hours in quiet time-without complaint-, such as if I have a migraine and simply need a break, bad. So he can be independent then, right?

Oy.

Yes, mommy guilt is the worst.  Seriously, my MIL and her best friend will go on and on about how I'm this fantastic mother, and most of the time I worry I'm really a cr*p mom. So you can at least appear to be a supermom and still feel guilty that you're not doing the right thing, not doing enough, etc.

bleh!eyesroll.gif

NewMoonMum is offline  
#14 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 02:18 PM
 
blizzard_babe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Land of Beer and Cheese, baby.
Posts: 4,910
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

It was shortly after that age (DS1 is now 2 1/2) that we started being able to just do things with him playing next to us, or watching, or participating. Like I can sit on the couch and knit while he plays cars. He craves a little bit of connection, so I call him over at the end of every row/round to press the button on the knitting row-counter app on my iPod Touch, and then tell him to go back and play, and he DOES. We can sort of exist together, doing separate things, like separate human beings (he also does this with DH, who's home with him during the day).

 

Honestly, We've kind of made it a point NOT to entertain him or do kid-focused stuff with him all the time. Sure, I'll get down and play trains for a while when I have some spare time, but then get up and do something and leave him to his own devices. Similarly, he'll come join us in whatever we're doing (he has a dish washing fascination) if the mood strikes him. We talk and interact while he does his thing and we do ours. "Quality time," in my opinion, isn't necessarily "adult focused solely on kiddie activities" time. Just existing in the same space and interacting naturally is pretty much how kids learn. I'm not saying we ignore DS1 when he wants to play, not at all. But saying, "I'm tired of playing with airplanes, I'm going to go start the laundry. Do you want to stay and play by yourself or do you want to come with me and help?" or stuff like that. 


Me+DH+DS1+DS2+Dog=me and a house full of guys, which is really just peachy, thanks.
blizzard_babe is offline  
#15 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 02:47 PM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I love this thread. It's making me feel normal.

bcblondie likes this.

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#16 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 04:50 PM
 
Everrgreen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,817
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gillian28 View Post

Honestly, I find it a little boring to sit down and play toddler games for hours.


Just a little boring?!? lol I'm totally with you... it's boring. Very boring!

 

And I totally have days like you just described... I go out of my way to do super fun things & DS decides to be miserable :( It stinks & really does make me feel like a bad SAHM. I hope the rest of your day goes better.

 

lol!  Yeah, ok.  Very boring is right!  And my ds isn't quite at the make believe stage, so his games are totally random.  And because he's still mostly nonverbal I'm left guessing wth I'm supposed to do lol!

 

And I agree with the pp that it's good for toddlers to learn to play alone.  For my ds, he usually cries/whines a bit before he will finally go off and do something on his own.  I feel bad that he cries, but he does eventually wander off and play, so I'm ok with it.

 


Mama to my charming little boy, born at home January '09
Everrgreen is offline  
#17 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 05:58 PM
tzs
 
tzs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 1,624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by bcblondie View Post

Wow! Thank you all so much for the responses!! You are all so extremely helpful and I feel much less alone in this now.

 

Crunchy mommy, I have the same thing. Like today we went to the mall. He got to play in teh play area and wander around a lot and I was focused on him the whole time.) It's teh days trapped inside that are hard. If anyone has NON BORING suggestions for entertaining mom and todder together, I'd love to hear! Or maybe that should be a new thread?

 

(

 

 

GoBecGo. I agree. I want more kids too. And I know that one-on-one time will be shorter. But that's ok! Kids need siblings too! I think that actively sitting down with one child, or 2 children, is the same. Mommy is still playing with the kids. Focusing on the kids. Even if it's not 100% on the one child, kwim? For once, mommy is putting down this or that and taking time out for family. And I think that's sooo important, regardless of how many kids have to share the attention lol.

Side note. It's also great that siblings can play while mommy is busy. I hate that he only has ME to turn to. He LOVES other kids. He needs a sibling so bad.

 

 

 

for me the most non-boring out of the house thing is to go swimming with her. in fact, i have to go to our rec department website asap and sign us up for the winter.

 

but yeah, i think the guilt might get easier with two. when we spend time at SIL's house, her 5 kids keep dd entertained i could literally leave and come back at night. and it's not like they are even playing WITH her. just all the activity keeps her busy.

 

luckily dd is very independent so she does spend most of her time doing stuff on her own by choice. lately it's obsessively pushing her dump truck around the house hauling loads of whatever junk she can find. but i still have that nagging feeling that she won't speak until she's 12 because i'm not actively engaging her (yeah....i know it's silly....)


Reluctant 'Sconie, chassid and mama to sweet toughie Ada Bluma 9/9/09 and loving pittie-mix ("Judge the deed, not the breed!")
tzs is offline  
#18 of 27 Old 12-13-2010, 07:48 PM
 
xoxoxo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I enjoy reading this thread a lot. Thank you everyone! 

bcblondie likes this.
xoxoxo is offline  
#19 of 27 Old 12-14-2010, 12:33 PM
 
LynnolaS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 76
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

One more thought~ there are several things I wish my own parents had done differently raising me, and "being more present with me as a toddler" is not even in the running. And I was a toddler in the playpen era (also the leave the kids in the car while you go grocery shopping era!). Thinking about that helps me with the guilt, too.

LynnolaS is offline  
#20 of 27 Old 12-14-2010, 12:55 PM
 
t2009's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Somewhere between here & there
Posts: 580
Mentioned: 27 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnolaS View Post

One more thought~ there are several things I wish my own parents had done differently raising me, and "being more present with me as a toddler" is not even in the running. And I was a toddler in the playpen era (also the leave the kids in the car while you go grocery shopping era!). Thinking about that helps me with the guilt, too.


LOL! ^^ This is so true!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by blizzard_babe View Post

Honestly, We've kind of made it a point NOT to entertain him or do kid-focused stuff with him all the time. Sure, I'll get down and play trains for a while when I have some spare time, but then get up and do something and leave him to his own devices. Similarly, he'll come join us in whatever we're doing (he has a dish washing fascination) if the mood strikes him. We talk and interact while he does his thing and we do ours. "Quality time," in my opinion, isn't necessarily "adult focused solely on kiddie activities" time. Just existing in the same space and interacting naturally is pretty much how kids learn. I'm not saying we ignore DS1 when he wants to play, not at all. But saying, "I'm tired of playing with airplanes, I'm going to go start the laundry. Do you want to stay and play by yourself or do you want to come with me and help?" or stuff like that. 


Also this ^^!! I read somewhere (in those early days of reading a lot about children's development) about child-centered vs. continuum concept and the idea of not being child-centered and just existing with your child and sharing your space and world with him really appealed to me. I admit that this is hard to remember when culturally I feel pushed to spend "quality" time playing with him when we're together. But blizzard_babe's response is a good reminder that more child-centered activities isn't necessarily a good thing.


Mama to my little busy bee. 

t2009 is online now  
#21 of 27 Old 12-14-2010, 01:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
bcblondie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 3,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnolaS View Post

One more thought~ there are several things I wish my own parents had done differently raising me, and "being more present with me as a toddler" is not even in the running. And I was a toddler in the playpen era (also the leave the kids in the car while you go grocery shopping era!). Thinking about that helps me with the guilt, too.



This is so true! I never even thought of that.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by t2009 View Post



Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by blizzard_babe View Post

Honestly, We've kind of made it a point NOT to entertain him or do kid-focused stuff with him all the time. Sure, I'll get down and play trains for a while when I have some spare time, but then get up and do something and leave him to his own devices. Similarly, he'll come join us in whatever we're doing (he has a dish washing fascination) if the mood strikes him. We talk and interact while he does his thing and we do ours. "Quality time," in my opinion, isn't necessarily "adult focused solely on kiddie activities" time. Just existing in the same space and interacting naturally is pretty much how kids learn. I'm not saying we ignore DS1 when he wants to play, not at all. But saying, "I'm tired of playing with airplanes, I'm going to go start the laundry. Do you want to stay and play by yourself or do you want to come with me and help?" or stuff like that. 


Also this ^^!! I read somewhere (in those early days of reading a lot about children's development) about child-centered vs. continuum concept and the idea of not being child-centered and just existing with your child and sharing your space and world with him really appealed to me. I admit that this is hard to remember when culturally I feel pushed to spend "quality" time playing with him when we're together. But blizzard_babe's response is a good reminder that more child-centered activities isn't necessarily a good thing.



Oh, that's good to know.


Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
bcblondie is offline  
#22 of 27 Old 12-14-2010, 02:13 PM
 
happysmileylady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,216
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

6hrs?  Shoot, my GOAL is 1 hr with my 2 yr old.  I have WAY too much to do to spend more time than that totally focused on just my 2 yr old not doing chores or anything else.  And not just housework-I have a 3  month old to nurse and change her diapers, a teen to run all over, errands like dropping things at the post office, or grocery shopping, cooking, etc etc etc.  And some days, I don't even get that hour.

 

As for what we do-make snacks together (I find baking something unnecessary is easier with a 2 year old than allowing her to "help" make real dinner, it's less stressful for me, making it easier to focus my attention on her) I made playdough with her and then just kinda set her on it.  We play legos or dance to music.  Sometimes just a meal or snack together at the table. 

Courtney-Ostaff likes this.
happysmileylady is offline  
#23 of 27 Old 12-14-2010, 03:29 PM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by happysmileylady View Post

6hrs?  Shoot, my GOAL is 1 hr with my 2 yr old.  I have WAY too much to do to spend more time than that totally focused on just my 2 yr old not doing chores or anything else.  And not just housework-I have a 3  month old to nurse and change her diapers, a teen to run all over, errands like dropping things at the post office, or grocery shopping, cooking, etc etc etc.  And some days, I don't even get that hour.

For the record, we had a rough day today, and I would say pretty much NONE of it was child-centered. So my 6hr estimate may have been a bit high. ;)


Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#24 of 27 Old 12-15-2010, 08:58 PM
 
Vegan Princess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: California
Posts: 3,355
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Great thread. I was just talking about this with my own mom. My mom was here this weekend and she and I spent the day running around together and left my 22 month old home with daddy from 10:30 until 6:30. She fell asleep in his arms while they were dancing around 6:15 or 6:30, she was sooo worn out. She didn't nap so that was part of it...but I told my mom that DH probably played with her every minute of the day. He always plays with her when he's home. I don't feel like I play with her all that much compared to him. But I have a household to run while he is at work. And my mom reminded me that I'm not daddy, I'm mommy and she said that moms can't play with their little ones all day or nothing would get accomplished. I know this. But it helped to hear it.

 

That said, I do think I can find more time to play. But I am much happier when we do things out of the house like the park or play spaces or the library. We are out a lot of time running errands. When we are home I am usually cleaning or it is meal time or nap time. I do sit and read books with her a lot. At least 1/2 hour or hour is spent doing that each day. And she is very interested in being involved with cooking and cleaning now. So she is usually by my side while I do most things - it's just not me building a tower with her for the 408th time this week.

 

Cindy


Mama to my veggie girl hearts.gif(1/09) and my sweet rainbow baby rainbow1284.gif (9/12). 

Vegan Princess is offline  
#25 of 27 Old 12-15-2010, 10:11 PM
 
Caterina's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 246
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by blizzard_babe View Post

It was shortly after that age (DS1 is now 2 1/2) that we started being able to just do things with him playing next to us, or watching, or participating. Like I can sit on the couch and knit while he plays cars. He craves a little bit of connection, so I call him over at the end of every row/round to press the button on the knitting row-counter app on my iPod Touch, and then tell him to go back and play, and he DOES. We can sort of exist together, doing separate things, like separate human beings (he also does this with DH, who's home with him during the day).

 

Honestly, We've kind of made it a point NOT to entertain him or do kid-focused stuff with him all the time. Sure, I'll get down and play trains for a while when I have some spare time, but then get up and do something and leave him to his own devices. Similarly, he'll come join us in whatever we're doing (he has a dish washing fascination) if the mood strikes him. We talk and interact while he does his thing and we do ours. "Quality time," in my opinion, isn't necessarily "adult focused solely on kiddie activities" time. Just existing in the same space and interacting naturally is pretty much how kids learn. I'm not saying we ignore DS1 when he wants to play, not at all. But saying, "I'm tired of playing with airplanes, I'm going to go start the laundry. Do you want to stay and play by yourself or do you want to come with me and help?" or stuff like that. 


This is what we're noticing now too. We can be doing our own thing nearby (reading, knitting etc.) and she'll play, or bring a book up onto the couch next to me. I also invite DD (26 months) to help with any chore I'm doing but she's starting to choose to play alone instead of following me down to the laundry room every time. Also, DD just started saying, "Mama, I need you" when it really has been too long since she had my attention. I think that is such a great way to communicate clearly and so of course I stop what I'm doing right away to play with her.


Wife to great guy and mama to 2 beautiful girls S Oct 15, 2008 and Z March 22, 2011
Caterina is offline  
#26 of 27 Old 12-30-2010, 10:57 PM
 
Aliy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Lower Mainland BC
Posts: 805
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

i have no idea.. when they need something they come to me and we do games and stuff together through the day but i never really sit down for X amount of time


SAHM to D ( 10/06 ) A (10/08) & C (03/11)
Aliy is offline  
#27 of 27 Old 12-31-2010, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
bcblondie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 3,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

These are all great responses. I think it's great that so many of you just basically listen to your child tells you, in terms of how much attention they need. If they need you, and you can play with them at that moment, great! If not they can wait a bit and then play. That's awesome too.

 

I think the "existing together and sharing a space" idea is very interesting. And I'm happy it works for some families. :)

 

Personally, my opinion has changed a little since I started this thread. I'm determined to spend more time with not just my son, but my husband as well. In my family I think quality time is a way to show love that I may have been slacking on. Of course every family is different and you know what your family needs, to feel loved. But when I see the joy on DS face when I just merely sit in his new play tunnel/tent thing he got for christmas, it feels so right. For a moment, everything else can wait. (and the tent really helps me block out those distractions!!)

Courtney-Ostaff likes this.

Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
bcblondie is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off