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Structure and Routine while visiting family....

My 6 year old son is visiting with my mom in a different state for the first time without us...he's there for 2 weeks. My son thrives on structure and routine. I don't allow too much tv or sweets at home. If he's in an environment where there is no structure such as school, camp, etc.things go haywire for him. Sooo my mom is a very laid back parent-no set bedtime, meal time, unplanned activities, not really monitoring how much sweets he has, etc. She got upset with me for trying to impose my rules in her hubby agreed so I let it go. He'll only be there for 2 weeks. But he's changed!

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Asked by Anonymous at 8:14 AM on Aug. 8, 2009 in General Parenting

Answers (7)
  • OP here...cont'd
    He doesn't want to go outside for fun..only sit in front of the tv, not talking to anyone unless he wants something, etc. I told her that he is NOT like this at home and maybe she should try to set some routine with him. He has a week left there. Should I leave it alone and let it be "her" problem or am I right in trying to tell her what works best for MY child?

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:14 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • Are you there too or are you at home? If you are there too then I'd say keep up with your own methods BUT if he's just at Grandma's and you're at home then I'd say let it go. When he gets home you'll have some undoing but you'll manage. Kids learn pretty quickly that they can get away with certain things with one adult and not with another. They act differently with Mom than they do with Dad, they act differently at school than they do at home. It will take him a little time to adjust back to his old routine, but he'll get back to it. Think of yourself getting back to work on a Monday morning after vacation. It takes a little while to get back into the swing of things. He's on vacation right now, let him enjoy his Grandma time. You're clearly doing a great job with him, he's a good kid, he deserves a little time like this. It won't ruin him and two weeks won't "undo" a lifetime.

    Answer by beckcorc at 9:00 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • Of course all children thrive on a schedule. It took us several years to adjust to "grandma and grandpa's" way of doing things when our kids are there. But our children don't see them very often as we live about 12 hours away and we are grateful that they want to be involved in our children's lives.

    There is always some backtracking to be done when the kids return home, but it's not worth a huge family argument over. At least, in our opinion. :)

    Answer by fluud7 at 10:28 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • The only thing I'll say is that you can try, and she won't do it. Next year, when she brings up the trip, say that his adjustment back home was so long, that you'll have to cut the trip to a week.

    Answer by apexmommy at 10:50 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • I saw just let it go but you are going to have to allow for several weeks to get back into a routine once he's home. Every time my kids spend time with my in-laws it takes a week to get them to understand they now have to follow our rules again and we aren't strict about TV and stuff (they watch as much as they want, etc). But their cousins have almost no rules and they come home acting like nut cases, running all over like crazy, fighting, wanting stuff they know we don't allow and throwing tantrums when they don't get it. And that's after just a weekend with my sil while we are in town with them. It's crazy.
    My oldest does the same thing when she spends time at her best friend's house because while she is there her friend doesn't do any of her regular chores (its' like a mini vacation for her) but my dd thinks she lives like that all the time so she should get to, too. Drives me nuts.

    Answer by justanotherjen at 11:00 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • He'll fall back into his usual routine soon after coming home.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:46 AM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • it sounds like the kid is bored. Can someone take him to a playground where he can interact with other kids?

    Answer by rkoloms at 1:22 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

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