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My poor kids, what do I do?

My kids really want to go swimming but they can't swim and neither can I. I would love to take them to a beach or pool, but am afraid of accidents.

To make matters worse my neighbors down the street have a pool and have invited the kids but I said no because I was worried about them drowning.

To add insult, my next door neighbors just got a large above ground pool and this really upset the kids when they seen it.

I don't know what to do, I have no money for lessons. ( I have seen lessons for $40 a session! and I have 5 kids!) The kids really want to go swimming badly and I want to do something for them. My dd, age 8 was so was so upset she was crying and telling me I was just trying to give them a bad childhood. Yes, I know that was wrong, but I also know that she feels strongly and is upset.

What do I do?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 2:45 PM on Jun. 13, 2011 in General Parenting

Answers (12)
  • What about one of those smaller outdoor pools that have the blue rings? One that is small enough for your little one to still stand but big enough for the older kids to have fun in? And you can always get the kids those life vest swimsuits. That what we got our dd so when she is swimming she feels more comfortable.

    Answer by BabyBugsmama at 2:52 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • You get them swim vest, or suits that float, or swimmies. Then you ask your neighbor if it's ok if your kids could swim there, and if she could help you watch them since you cant' swim. Owners of pools are always watching non-swimmers in the pool, its one of the downfalls of owning a pool. Then hopefully they learn how to swim on their own, or you ask a friend to teach them.
    The 8 yr old may be able to touch the bottom of the above ground pool.

    Answer by Candi1024 at 2:56 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • Check out the YMCA, my son took his swimming lessons there and they were really cheap.

    Answer by Dahis at 2:57 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • Can they stand in the water? Let them in and splash around. They will be swimming in no time. Use water wings for the little ones.

    Answer by mompam at 2:57 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • How close are you to your neighbors? You could always ask them to help teach your family how to swim. If I were your neighbor I would be glad to help :)

    Answer by amber1330 at 3:02 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • Maybe one of your neighbors that have the pools, could teach your kids to swim, you would just have to talk to the parents and let them know your fears...

    Answer by nybor48 at 3:03 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • There is an organization that offers free swimming lessons - a mom started it after her son drowned. She felt all kids should know how to swim even if they can't afford lessons. I believe the name of the organization has her son's name. Sorry, wish I could remember it- hopefully you can find it online. If not, try the United Way. In the meantime, a smaller pool to get you all started may be the way to go. Stay safe but have fun! GL!

    Answer by mrsmom110 at 3:06 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • the neighbours who invited you for a swim, could you tell them that you and the kids don't know how to swim and ask them to help you teach them? Most pools at home are pretty shallow, adults can stand in them. My kids can stand in our friends pool.

    Answer by AmandaH321 at 3:09 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • I take all 3 of my non-swimming kids to the pool in swim vests (coast guard approved). they were maybe $20 each. Not cheap, but it's the only way I feel safe with them at the pool. They have to get the vests on before they get near the pool, and they can't take them off till they're done. They love to be in the pool, and they kick themselves all around, which teaches them the basics. Only now, my son is 6 and very confident, I let him (only the 1) kick around with just a kickboard, and only in the shallow end.

    I am a strong swimmer, but don't know how to teach. I do admit I am getting them lessons this year, and I am paying $45 for him and $32 for the other 2 (sibling discount). But we went through a year with just the vests, and they defintieily picked up some skills that way, which I hope will translate into learning faster when the lessons do start.

    There are books and videos about teaching too- at your library. Good luck

    Answer by Tracys2 at 3:17 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

  • ask your neighbor with the pool if he/she can teach your kids to swim. You can supervise from land and they can be in the pool with a knowledgable adult.

    Answer by Ms.Gwen at 7:13 PM on Jun. 13, 2011

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