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Am I a bad mom if I don’t play with my kids all day?
Q: I have four kids and one on the way! I feel guilty if I am not around them, interacting and playing with them during the day. What should I do? I have alone time with each of the kids, and I am a big believer in that, but do I need to be in the playroom with them during all their waking hours?
Allissa Seminole
A: No Allissa, you don’t. I’m sure your mother didn’t spend hours and hours playing with you. Unfortunately, this generation of parents has been misinformed by the permissive parenting movement of the last 25 years. One of the worst ideas the so-called experts of this movement pushed was that the more you do for your children, the better parent you are.

You sound to me like a very good mum who should in no way feel guilty. You have the right to set limits on how much you want to play with your children every day. Nowhere is it written that you’re supposed to be their playmates throughout the day. So, start setting limits on your playtime by simply stating, “mummy has work to do right now” or, “mummy needs grown-up time now.”

Kenneth N. Condrell Ph.D Child Psychologist