What do you do when your child loves an activity but you don't? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It could be anything -- a class that's inconvenient or poorly run, a mom's group where you don't fit in or feel judged, playdate with a mom you don't get along with... but your kid loves it, has formed close friendships, etc.

And I guess it's worth mentioning that I'm talking more about toddler/preschool age, where you can't yet drop them off.

How do you choose whose needs are more important, if your own discomfort is strong, interfering with your daily sense of peace & happiness, and your child's love for the activity is equally strong?

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#2 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 04:03 PM
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I think I'd try to find a substitute activity that my child still loved but didn't leave me feeling so drained.  

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#3 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 04:35 PM
 
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I went through that with a play group. I continued, every week, for another year. Then one day my son asked if we 'had' to go the next week. That's when I found out he'd lost interest.

In my case, there was only four more months before kindergarten, so the end was coming, anyway. For an activity that could go on, much more than a year, I'd have to find some balance. It really depends. The minute your feelings go from irritation to resentment that is making you change your parenting adversely, it's time to seek new options. That's my advice.
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#4 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 05:21 PM
 
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depends on the intensity of my emotions. if it is extreme i have known to stop going and interacting. mind you these are kids who my dd called sisters. the mother was demanding too many under the table requests from me and i just didnt want those kinda values around dd. 

 

other times i hung in there for the sake of dd, when her need to play with them was greater than my need to not hang with these moms. i was ok with them not having a great time.

 

with any situation if one is truly miserable they win. 

 

if both needs are equally strong then i'd try to figure out if they indeed are strong. i would question myself and check with myself to find out if it was indeed as strong as i thought. or when i was there i could handle it, but when i was away i would make stories in my head (however i am prone to sometimes make mountains out of molehills, that does not mean i imply you are doing the same)

which was not necessarily how things were. i'd also try to stay away and see what dd said. did she miss them terribly. 

 

having said that crunchy i have to say we have truly never been 180 apart. 

 

when i've got to the point of assessing our needs i have often discovered dd was doing it for me. even at that young age. mom you seem to have a good time, you have friends to talk to. i didnt want to stop that. 

 

need assessment usually clears things up well. 

 

however no matter how i felt, if that was dd's ONLY outlet or activity then i'd let it happen. over time it takes care of itself. 

 

there is a particular girl that dd LOVES but i am not so hot on. however i couldnt stop a 10 year old. so i let it be and she discovered on her own. 


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#5 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 07:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hmm it is wreaking havoc on my life... but he really doesn't have anything else going on. So I guess the solution is to hang in there for a while longer and work harder at finding other things he'll enjoy, so we have something lined up if we quit this current thing. It feels hard putting his needs first when I'm feeling so distressed but also selfish to even consider pulling him out. He does love it but not always and I think I could find other ways to meet his needs but it will take some time & he hates unfamiliar situations so it will be a bit tough to get him to try something new.

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#6 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 07:32 PM
 
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it seems crunchy that its time to look for other opportunities. 

 

because remember you can only take so much. 

 

it is v. v. VERY HARD to just hang in there. sounds like your ds isnt as much into it - just more due to lack of 'others'.


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#7 of 15 Old 09-25-2012, 11:16 PM
 
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Is there someone else who could take him?


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#8 of 15 Old 09-26-2012, 08:15 AM
 
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I think I might start with the "why" of my own discomfort. Is it something that I can reframe? Is there a piece of it that is actually harmful to my child in some way, even if he or she is enjoying it?
 

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#9 of 15 Old 09-26-2012, 04:38 PM
 
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Does your DS 'love' the activity or is the current activity better than no activity or better than dealing with the anxiety of a new activity?  Kids can be funny.  When asked my DS would say 'no I dont like X', but if I asked him 'would you like to do Y instead of X", he would answer "I like X".

 

So maybe instead of the playgroup, you can find something totally different for the winter months?  Does your city parks/rec department have a  kids program?  would he like to try tots karate?  mom n me art?  Maybe the library has a preschool preschool program?

 

If this 'activity' is causing YOU distress and anxiety, then its time to stop and look for something else.  Even just take a break from organized stuff for awhile and have your own park days, library day etc.


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#10 of 15 Old 09-27-2012, 04:53 AM
 
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My ds didn't always want to try new things... But it worked pretty well to tell him we would just go and stay for a little while (half an hour) and then I'd take him home whenever he was ready. Knowing he wasn't going to be stuck at the new activity made him more receptive to going. 

 

He never liked an activity that I hated. If he had, I'd have suspected it was just that he thought it was better than nothing. He was pretty selective and sensitive to interpersonal dynamics...

 

But if I felt the way you seem to, I think I'd just quit it or start scaling back frequency (skip weeks or whatever) while looking for other options. If I was hating it that much, there would definitely be something wrong with it. I'll deal with long drives and boredom for something ds loved without a problem but we'd be out of any activity that was "wreaking havoc" on my life. Ask him if he wants to do the thing you hate or if he'd rather go to the playground/zoo/ice cream shop. Offering him the choice would give you a better idea of whether he's wanting to do it for it's own sake or because it's just something to do.


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#11 of 15 Old 09-28-2012, 10:50 AM
 
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There was a dance class that DD was loved last year that I couldn't stand for a number of reasons.    I opted out of everything extra (the recital, the photos, etc), even though DD would have liked those things, and then found her a new dance class this year (after having the summer off).  With the natural break of the summer, it was easier.  When she mentioned the old class, I told her it just wouldn't work this year and gave her a choice of 2 new options.  We are now both delighted with her current class situation.  


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#12 of 15 Old 09-29-2012, 04:53 PM
 
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My advice would be based on why you have such a hard time with this. Do you just find it boring or is there a much bigger issue? Are people really being awful to you or are they just not your kind of people?

If he really loves it and there's no current alternative, I guess I would try to stick it out depending on the situation BUT only as long as it's just uneasiness on your part and not something horrible. If people are doing or saying inappropriate things, even if my child was having fun with the other kids, I wouldn't want to bring my child there.

Also, as a toddler he doesn't really need organized activities and/or you can just bring him to things around town like the library and I'm sure he'll be just as happy most of the time. 


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#13 of 15 Old 09-29-2012, 05:04 PM
 
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At your son's age, it's really a matter of finding something that works for both of you. There are generally a lot of options  that will provide him with the socialization and experiences you're looking to provide for him, while giving you at least some kind of enjoyment. If there isn't something immediately available, you might want to try and wait it out until you do find something else. As long as it isn't too painful or unpleasant for you.

 

As they get older and develop their own interests, it can be a bit trickier. But then... you also have to be less engaged.
 

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#14 of 15 Old 09-29-2012, 05:09 PM
 
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If I don't like it then we quit. There are just so many other activities, classes, play groups available to us that my son's not deprived. If anything, we have too many choices!

But if there weren't many choices I'd try to find someone else to take my son or I'd suck it up and stay.
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#15 of 15 Old 10-03-2012, 09:47 PM
 
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It will depend on how happy my DD when she does it,..in considering if she will stop it or not, can I give the same or more satisfaction on the other activity I will introduce?

 

example, she just love to climb our small black layered cabinet up to the 3rd layer but usually she is just in the 1 or 2nd..  when she climb in it,. I can read success and happiness in her face. When I tell her to don't climb in it,. she becames sad,. so I just let her and just put some cusions around the cabinet. And we are both happy now. ROTFLMAO.gif


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