15 Answers

I am a full-time working mum of a 5 and 3 year old they have a few extra curricular activities like swimming and athletics but I’m going insane trying to find things for them to do that I can actually get to after work. Am I a bad mum if I can’t let them do these things? Hubby and I both work and everything starts before we even finish our work day … what to do? Any help would be appreciated.

Posted by aweesa, 12th February 2016

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  • I am sure they are kept busy with activities at day care and at the end of the day would like to relax as much as you do. At their ages do they really need to be involved with any structured activities at the end of the day? If you want to do something each afternoon with them, you could create your own routine, thKe them to a pool or park. There will be plenty of time for them to discover their passion for sports, arts, or other activities. On weekends, occasionally take them to experience watching sports and the theatre etc. They will let you know where their passion lies. Find out from your council what is offered on weekends, there may be a little athletics, swimming club, pony club, chess, fishing, sailing, BMX racing, or they may show an interest in music. Before you know it they will be wanting to be involved in everything that their friends are into. They can’t do everything and you parents are not Superman or Wonderwoman. Your children have to learn that you can only so so much and can’t be in more than one place at a time. For your family it seems weekends are when you can fit in extra activities, so perhaps something you all enjoy doing together. No one can do it all, there has to be limits on what is achievable for you all. You are not bad parents because of the hours you work. Enjoy whatever you do as a family, creating happy memories of childhood as they grow up so quickly!

  • Saturday sport. It’s hard juggling work commitments and kids isn’t it? When I was growing up, I only did only 2 things per week. Brownies on Friday nights and netball on a Saturday. Both my parents worked multiple jobs and it’s all they could manage. I don’t feel like I missed out on anything so maybe decide what you can get to and what your child really wants to do and try not to get sucked into over scheduling your child.

  • Might be worth checking with your local community centre as they often run classes and activities like arts and computing. Not sure if they would have anything for kids so young. Our swim centre has a great range of class times and this is both social and active.

  • These days a lot of activities are open seven days a week. Check your local community for kids and some activities such as swimming are open on Saturday and Sundays . My son used to love swimming and took him to the pools on Sat/Suns. Now that you mention it , it was a bit exhausting ( when I went back to full time ) , but it was fun as well as I used to go and watch him for an hour .
    Maybe do up a timetable to see where the gaps are and go from there .

  • Lots of sports do weekend stuff, also things like scouts tend to be a bit later in the evening. Check your local community facebook page and you can usually find great info there

  • Swimming and athletics are great. I can’t imagine they would need to do much more but if you want them to try other things then how about something on the weekend. Grasshopper soccer has Sat and Sun sessions.

  • your kids are so young and really what you are doing with swimming and athletics is probably enough at this age. just enjoy spending time with them at home or at your local park, playing…. or do some home baking with them or play dough, reading, paying with their toys with them. this is the best a mother can do. structured entertainment is not always the best.

  • Kids don’t need lots of extracurricular activities. You’re doing great providing for your kids. As they get older sports get later or they stay straight after school. Try some weekend activities like a playground centre they cane run wild in or soccer at the park, go to a library or museum they’re usually free too.

  • It can be hard witth kids that are younger due to bed times etc.. But there are things like karate etc which the kids can do that run later at night..

  • When you work full time you can only do the best you can. My parents were wonderful when my boys were younger as they enjoyed taking them to some activities and often we would pick them up. If that is not an option many places have activities on the weekend.

  • Swimming and athletics sound like good activities for their ages.

  • First of all you are not a bad mum. Secondly, I am sure there are plenty of activities that would work with your schedule, such as swimming or athletics on weekends.

  • Do you have somebody who could take the kids to activities. They probably don’t realise they are mssing out at this stage. A lot of swimming centres have lessons on Saturdays. The number of teachers, classes and areas they have divided by ropes they should be able to have their lessons at the same times.
    I think Little Athletics may be on Saturdays too. The company I worked for sponsor them. I don’t know if they still do or not. I know some of the staff went to it on weekends. One of the children has Downs Syndrome and she later competed in Junior Athletics Competitions as well as those for disabled children.

  • I’m in a similar situation and think you are doing great. We fit in tennis and athletics in summer and swimming and football in winter. It is what we can afford and manage without going crazy.

  • You could always pay a nanny or ask family to help out.

    You could also do swimming etc on weekends when you are able to drive your kids – there are plenty of classes available at these times.

    If you ask other mums, be very careful not to make them feel used – you MUST be able to repay the favour with playdates/ nighttime babysitting etc.

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