Am i doing something wrong?

Justine - posted on 04/14/2010 ( 29 moms have responded )

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So, I am a stay at home mom to a 8 month old and my little boy is the busiest baby ive ever met. Part of me thinks i spoil him to much, the other part of me thinks i dont do enough.

I play with him most of the day, but i cant just sit here and make funny faces at him and chase him around so he doesnt hurt himself ALL day! When i put him down(in his play pin or walker) to have me time, he either cries his head off, or he's absolutely bored, and also he feels so trapped! He has the same toys day to day, and i feel theres more i can do with him, but at the same time i'm exausted.

If anyone has any suggestions for activities i can do with him that both him and I can both enjoy, please help. Also, how do i find a balance? Some moms think babies need to find independence, and i dont agree or disagree with that. I just dont know how to make him independent.

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Alicia - posted on 04/14/2010

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I do think that it's important for children to learn to be somewhat independent for many reasons. We are very busy women...we have to clean, cook, organize, pay bills, and all other sorts of daily madness. Not to mention the fact that sometimes. we would like 10 minutes to sit down and just relax. You little boy can learn to entertain himself a little more. My advice to you is that if he is crawling, let him loose more often. Baby proof the house, put up those gates and let him explore. Also, they have large gates that form somwhat of an octagon that are quite large. Those ones can be moved outside or left inside and they fold up for storage. He would have a lot more room and wouldn't feel as trapped. Also, try music. It might take his mind off of what you are doing without him. And definitely like someone said, change out the toys. He will forget about the ones in the closet and they will seem new to him when you bring them down. The only other piece of advice I can give is to just give it some time. Kids take awhile to develop a routine. It may take a week or two and it might take a few tears and some reassurance but he will learn how to play by himself. Hope this helps and best of luck to you!

Ashley - posted on 04/14/2010

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whenever we got bored, we went for a walk. i also put away half of my daughters toys and i switch it up every once in a while, its like they rediscover them. also, try getting a superyard, its less confining than a portable playpen. it feels more like being "free" cause they are on the actual floor and its a much larger space. start by staying nearby and leave the room for a couple min. at a time. he will eventually realize that you will always come back. good luck!

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Victoria - posted on 04/17/2010

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Justine, I have a 8 month old too! He has jumper, walker, and floor time. I was the mom that didn't hold my little man all the time, only because he had jaundice really bad for a week after he was born but anyway, I would try to give him more floor time. Does your son crawl or walk yet? Mine does not..until recently he wasn't even interested...I don't think you are doing anything wrong my only suggestion would be giving him more floor time, that will enable him to discover things on his own...I hope this helps! I also put on his learning DVD (Your Baby Can Read) and that really really helps me get things done around the house!

Cassandra - posted on 04/17/2010

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When i need to get some things done and have a little me time, i put my on in his play yard with his toys, also... i turn on a kids show, usually play house disney, even though he doesn't sit and watch the whole thing he likes to listen to the music and voices while he is playing.

Debbie - posted on 04/17/2010

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Every mother experiences the feelings you have about how to balance her own needs and whether they are succeeding as mother. Where is the balance? One of the most common concerns of being a mother. It sounds like you are doing great. The mothers I worry about when I work with them are the mothers who don't worry, wonder and question. Your baby sounds delightful. He sounds like he is active, curious and has bonded well with you. He might be struggling with separation anxiety. A couple of tips might help. First, with baby's his age, their memory is very short. Take his toys and rotate them. Separate his toys into four groups and bag up three of the groups in separate bags. Every week, rotate the toys to a new group. Count up the toys in the weekly bag and give 1/7 of them to him each day. As you rotate, he will react like they are brand new toys. Second, when you need time to cook or do something that you need to concentrate on, put him in his playpen and turn on a fun, educational DVD (Baby Einstein, Your Baby Can Read, The Wiggles, etc). He will cry at first when you do it but just let him cry while you complete your task. After a few times, he will not cry and will start watching the DVD. Save most of the DVD/TV time for those moments in the day that you need your hands free. Don't feel guilty when he cries. He is just expressing his feelings about being separated from you. But he will not resolve those feelings until he learns that when you leave, you always come back. Third, make sure you have time alone for yourself each week. The best gift you can give your baby is a happy mom. Plan fun activities with him that YOU enjoy...walks, visits to the park, going to the zoo, visiting friends, trips to the mall, etc. Children love seeing new places and going for walks in their stroller. Enjoy playing games with him. The less frustrated you feel, the more calm he will become. Children are great mirrors of our feelings. Hope the suggestions help. Remember, you are doing a great job. Your time with this little one will go by faster than you can believe. Take lots of pictures and make a book about his life and development. Those pictures will bring you (and him) alot of enjoyment throughout the years.

Annemaree - posted on 04/16/2010

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i feel the same i think im not playing eneough when i really know deep dpwn i am probly playing too much my little man who is now nearly 3 wont play with anything toys , dirt , stricks or rocks unless im playing too!!! he aint independent at all which is not a good thing i tend to try and ignore his demands now to get on with my everyday life n chores i cant have him attached to my hip 24-7 lol its hard n frustraiting when my little one cries n carries on when im doing somthing but i feel it needs to be done maybe let him scream hell soon get used to the idea that u aint there on his demand and that he-she can wait till ur ready , remember crying dosnt hurt them .. good luck n if u truly find somthing that works well let me know pleaseeeee lol good luck!

Alyssa - posted on 04/16/2010

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I put a tv in my sons room so if i want me time then he can watch tv he loves it. You can try that. Its not good to play with him all the time and never put him down. He needs some him time too. If he cries thats ok let him.

Christy - posted on 04/16/2010

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Find a mom's group. There should be one in your area, go to www.momsclub.org to get him socialized with other kids his age. They have playgroups according to age usually.

Laurel - posted on 04/16/2010

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all I can say is baby proof a room or the whole darn house and put him down whenever he'll let you. Sometimes I'll sit on the floor and play with different toys, when my daughter becomes interested in something I'm doing I'll let her take over and SLOWLY ease away.. Remember one day in the future... your going to think back to this time and wish he wanted to still hang out with you!!!! Hang in there.. I do know how hard it is having maybe 10mins per day to yourself. Just remind yourself, that he's wanting up because your arms are safe, warm and wonderful place to be!!!!

Maricel - posted on 04/16/2010

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Its seperation anxiety and some kids have it more than others, my 11 month old REFUSES to hold his bottle is late in walking and thinkks he is surgically attached to my hip. Totally opposite of the rest of my kids. You can NOT spoil an infant a child yes an infant NO. its love and attention they want. Its hard when you have other things to do but honestly like my mom use to say when are you gonna carry em and cuddle and mush em with kisses, when they are 15? Enjoy em while you can they grow up so fast. He will be running away from you and wanting to be independant pushng you away in no time.

Myra - posted on 04/15/2010

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Since the weather is getting nicer, take him outside. You'll both get some fresh air, and you can tell him all the things you see. He will probably love it because it's new and it shouldn't be scary because you'll be there. However, it'll probably spark a bit of independence through curiosity.

Some babies are naturally independent, and others are just more into what you're doing. My oldest won't hardly play with her toys, yet, she knows how to do laundry and follows directions very well. Go figure... She also is very loving. I personally would take a child who is loving and warm, clingy even, than one I never see because they are "independent".

Your son just needs you, and needs to learn how to do things. He can't be on his own to do things until he learns them. You give him the tools and teach him how to use them, and in time, he will become independent. If he has a chair or something to sit in when you do housework, talk to him while you do it, and I pretty much can guarantee he'll be helping you in no time. My oldest is that way (she'll be 2yr old next month). I couldn't get away from her to do housework, so she went around the house doing it with me, and now she can actually do a lot of the things around the house. That's how I found balance. She helps me with the work, and I try to help her with play. She loves books and music, so we do a lot of singing, dancing, and reading. Her toys just don't hold her interest, but I try to play with those with her.

Nikki - posted on 04/15/2010

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I never had a minute to myself no matter how long I played with my son the second i put him in the playpen or exersaucer would cry his little eyes out. I couldnt even have a second to do things.... then my gf showed me this

http://trusca.imageg.net/graphics/produc...

it's called the ELFE superyard XT it's 6 baby gates that connect from toys r us you can also buy additonal gates

I made mine so it has eight it is my LIFESAVER it's huge I have covered the bottom with foam mats and put all his toys inside. he can crawl he can climb he can play and he can't hurt himself. It gives him lots of room to be independatn and it's big enough for me to play inside with him it was the best 120$ i have ever spent. it folds up easily and i can bring it everywhere , I cannot stress how AMAZING it is and now my little 10 month old is super independant he plays on his own and I can get things done around the house , something that was unheard of, plus Im not constantly losing my mind thinking he is going to hurt himself

Erica - posted on 04/15/2010

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We basically block our daughter in our living room with gates and have that area proofed and when mommy needs a few minutes we put in baby einstien they are only 30 mins and Caroline loves them she doesn't always watch like a zombie sometimes she kinda dances to the music and other times she just plays and looks up every now and then. I don't play them all day and in 30 min. you can get a lot done! Good luck!`

Chesnie - posted on 04/15/2010

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OMG I could have wrote this myself only about my little baby girl..She cries her little eyes out when i put her down. She crawls to me sobbing and also she crawls to everywhere I am in the house. I end up carrying her alot, I have even held her while i went to the bathroom..Now thats extreme but it was only in the middle of the night and i didnt want her waking daddy up..She eventually settles down and sometimes crawls away into our bedroom or somewhere and i have to look for her..lol I try and take her outside on the driveway in her walker and let her walk around the driveway.. I'm at a loss too, so I'm not much help sorry

Rachelle - posted on 04/15/2010

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i carried my 2nd child the first 2 yrs of his life. then i had to put him down. i felt bad but he just got too heavy. and it wasn't really fair to my first anyway. but with my first i would let her play w/ toys while i read a book or put her in her crib durring showers. dont feel like you "have to" entertain him. he will find something to do in your absence. it's your job to make sure it's not dangerous. have fun!

Jenn - posted on 04/15/2010

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I babyproof the house so that they can have free range to roam and explore. Go for walks. Take them shopping or to run errands if possible. Go visit some friends or family. Have company come over to visit. Not sure what else - just try to hang in there and remember that soon enough they will be more independent so that you can have a bit of time to relax.

Stephanie - posted on 04/15/2010

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Oh I don't think we can make them anything, they are who they are.As we are who we are too.Your little guy will go through mommy stages when he'll want to be ,"like always on your feet!." & other times when he's fine playing with his blocks & cars all by himself & thats totally a normal way to be.I think play dates are awsome for the little ones I think 8 months is a great time to get started meeting other moms and babies the same age as yours, libraries have groups, you can call for times & info.We boght a huge play-pen for or little tyke and he can do so much more in it because it's so big..It gives me some me time when I REALLY need it!~HUGS~ you'll figure out what works for you & him just have patients, one day @ a time,Stephy

Carla - posted on 04/14/2010

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I am also a SAHM, my advice for you is get outside or go somewhere...if i stayed home and inside all day i would go crazy! Hope things get better!

Susan - posted on 04/14/2010

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Make sure when you put him in his play pen or walker he is where he can see and hear you. Let him scream and cry once he realizes it isnt getting him anywhere he will stop. It took one day of doing this with my son. I have three girls and i boy and the girls were so much easier they entertained themselves my son no way he is way to busy two gears full throttle and dead asleep. You have to be tough with it though I used music and when I thought I was going to give in I turned the volume up now my son three loves music and loves to dance with me. Once he has less crying fits move him to where he can hear you talking to him but seeing him. It is trying but when it comes to getting him to school the seperation wont be as hard on him or you. My son liked thomas the train, and baby einsteins so when I moved hin where he couldnt see me I had those on the tv it kept him occupied. Good Luck

Jessica - posted on 04/14/2010

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Story times, play dates, or just getting outside helps. A change of scenery if good for both baby and mom.

Sam - posted on 04/14/2010

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I have 4 and the only thing i did was baby prove my house on what they can reach and go about what i had to do. Just make sure that if they cant see you that you talk to them still so that he knows you are still around. It will take a bit for him to realize that you are not coming to take him with you. it does work and really the hardest part will be you not running to him, it takes some time but the both of you will get use to it.

Amanda - posted on 04/14/2010

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We don't use a playpen for our daughter. We just made the livingroom completly baby proof and blocked of the rest of the house with gates that way she has more room to roam and explore. Babies love to explore at this age and it helps to keep them occupied. Another thing is to not be affraid to walk away for a minute or take a break from the constant being on the floor with him. If he cries he'll eventually learn to calm himself down. If you give him attention as soon as he starts to cry he'll continue to do that cause he knows that you come to him right away. Don't be affraid to sit on the couch where you can still keep an eye on him and watch a movie or read a book. Alot of babies at this time start to get separation anxiety so will bawl if you walk out of the room which is ok if you just need to run to the washroom or start some laundry. I suggest if you need to be out of the room longer to do some housework just put him in his high chair and give him some toys to play with that way he is still in the same room as you. I know its the only way I can get the kitchen cleaned sometimes.

Diana - posted on 04/14/2010

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well i had the same problem as u.. and i dont no if i handled it right or not but i bought him those Baby einstine movies like baby mozart..anything that had classical music and he loved those! he wuld sit in his walked n watch them over & over again.. giving me some time to myself.. and he still loves them.. but alot of babies are diffrent.. so i hope this helped..

Natalie - posted on 04/14/2010

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hi my son is 18 months and i had the same problems, i found that at times i had to leave him in his travel cot to play by himself as i needed to get on with daily chores throughout the day! you should not feel guilty, childing learn to play by themselves eventually!
I would suggest you maybe take your child along to some stay and play groups, they are great for your child aswell as you, you are able to meet new mums for friendship whiles watching your child have fun and make new friends!

Dana - posted on 04/14/2010

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At the age he is i think u r doing what u can. I do think also the park and play dates r a good idea for him an in time he will become independent. let him play with sum blocks an cars by him self and he will learn to play by him self.

Crystal - posted on 04/14/2010

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I agree with Amy M. I've done playdates with my son since he was 6 months - look into a Moms Club in your area. Depending on where you live, try taking him places that are free or cheap, if money is an issue. For example, the library - see if they have story time or a children's area with toys that he can play with and also interact with other children. Have you thought about signing up for a "Mommy and Me" class? Check out your Parks n Rec department. Definitely let him "explore" a little more, and agree with the swapping of the toys. :)

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My husband and I never used a play pen. With our 4 kids once they hit that age we would put them down with some toys and just put up a gate in the living room. We made sure we baby proofed and let them have their independence in that room. It allowed them to work on pulling themselves up and all were walking by 11 months. I also looked on line for preschool activity books and there are a few good ones out there, they gave me a lot of good ideas for little activities to do with them through the day.

[deleted account]

Hi Ashleys right about the toy swap I do this on all my kids 8 months 5 and 8 . Babies go through stages when sometimes they are clingy and scream when you go out of sight and other times they don't mind . I get my me time when I put the baby in her baby den , turn on cbbies and have a hot coffee this is the only time I get one which is still hot when I drink it . If you don't like the thought of TV for your baby then try some music and a lights display .
You are doing nothing wrong just feeling the mummy guilt . Good luck

Amy - posted on 04/14/2010

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Although children that age don't necessarily play with each other, you can try and do some play dates with other children. Even some that may be a little older. He will watch them play at your house or wherever and be distracted that you are not there. If he is crawling you can try a park. Just try to give him some social interaction with other children and he can learn to be happy on the floor without you. I hope this helps.

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