Friday, 25 February 2011

Who am I doing it for?

Taking the children out on trips that are meant to be treats I mean.  Who am I doing it for? It's certainly not for me that much is for sure. I get minimal pleasure out of it and I'd also question what the children get out of it.

I like to think I'm doing it because they're good children and the deserve a reward, or that they'll really enjoy it and be buzzing about it afterwards.

For instance, we just been to the cinema. This was meant to be a special treat for them.  After endless questions (all met with "because I said so" "because that's what we do" or "because we have to") and requests for sweets, popcorn and more sweets we settled down to watch the film. Sure they seemed to enjoy it (they've asked me enough times to take them) but every twenty minutes I was faced with "is it finished now?" "why are we still here?" or "I want to go home now".   We got through the film, went to the Disney Shop where I treated them to a little something each before heading back to the car. 

We hadn't even got out of the car park and they were fighting and whinging. The rest of the twenty minute drive home was set to the soundtrack of the boy wailing because I said he couldn't watch TV when we got home.  This was followed by a stand-off on the driveway, me threatening to leave him out there and him wailing some more before he was swiftly taken up the stairs and put in bed for an afternoon nap, still snivelling.  (I'm particularly enjoying the thought right now that he's got his MMR and pre-school booster this afternoon, ahh blessed just desserts!).

I'm questioning why I just spent the best part of £40 on an outing that was meant to be fun when clearly we would have all been far better sitting at home, playing games, doing drawing etc We would have had a far pleasant morning together.  Instead we've all come away tired, worn down, grumpy and barely talking to each other!  

And yet I know I'll do it again. They'll be endless trips to the pantomime, theatre shows, cinema and theme parks over the years which will all end in the same way - big fat tears.  For everyone. And my purse will be a whole lot lighter too.   So yes, I will put myself and them through the pain numerous times but I feel like the only people gaining from these excusions are the people who own the businesses that I am spending my hard earned cash at. 

Right now, I feel like my hair is about to drop out and I wish I'd never taken them. Boy is upstairs sulking (actually probably snoring now) and girly is back doing what she loves and wanted to do in the first place - glueing and sticking.  By teatime they'll have forgotten they've even been.

I remember avoiding parks when my daughter was about 16 months old because every trip ended up the same.  Her screaming and me wanting to drown my sorrows in a big vat of gin.  I avoided going as much as I could because it was like Chinese water torture. I'm wondering now if I should be taking the same stance now?

Surely this just doesn't happen to me? How can I make this more enjoyable? (By letting someone else take them whilst I got to a day spa?)

love & kisses
Mrs M x


  1. Do we just do it because we feel that's what's expected of us? I think, probably, yes!

    I haven't endured a cinema trip with C yet as she's still too young but I have encountered similar whining & general would-be-happier-at-home-ness when we've been out doing things that we're 'supposed' to be doing!

    Sticking to what we know works is probably the best thing!

  2. Oh, this is a toughie. Perhaps take them less often? We do take them to the cinema but normally the cheap viewings and we're quite strict about what they get there. But I think they need to experience these things so that they learn how to behave in such situations.

    Mine are a whole lot better now but they still argue and fight and stuff. Many's the time Monkey has been sent to his room and more recently Missy Woo too. I take no nonsense and I am prepared to carry out threats that I've issued. (I don't threaten anything I'm not prepared to do).


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