MTO Guideline: Play Well With Others

In our on-going series of breaking down our “Mommy Time-Out Guidelines”, here’s another one:

Play Well With Others  Create a support group with friends and/or family that you trust.  If they have children, trade babysitting times.  If they don’t, watch their pets or their house when they go out of town.  At the very least, have a reliable babysitter listed among your contacts that you can call when you need that Time-Out.

Many times we try to be “Super Mom” by taking care of the whole family without any assistance.   We tend to forget that family and friends are willing to help if we allow them to.  I myself have created a support group with friends and family that I trust.  But that wasn’t easy at first.

I felt guilty asking them to help me take my Mommy Time-Out (MTO), “Hey, watch my kids for me while I get my nails done, or just sit in a movie theater.”  It felt weird asking. But they are mothers themselves, and just as in need of a Mommy Time-Out as I am, so when I realized I could give back to them in the same way, the guilt went away.

Now, my sisters and I and a couple of friends have created a community of MTO-ers.   We call each other a few days ahead of time and arrange child care, and we all take comfort knowing we are helping each other out.  I can say through this whole experience that I have many reliable babysitters listed among my contacts that I can call on a drop of a dime who are willing to help me out, and vice versa.  I am thankful to be around all theses moms that understand the importance of taking their Mommy Time-Out.

What about you?  Are there people in your life that you can call for help and give back to them in kind?  We’d love to hear from you!

2 comments on “MTO Guideline: Play Well With Others

  1. You are so smart to have your child supervised by many (trusted) adults. Not only are you brilliant in setting up a community to relieve you of the most stressful occupation on the planet; but, you create the opportunity for your child to experience guidance by multiple adults. It has been proven that children do better and are better adjusted when they have a variety of adults with whom to consult. Moms and Dads are kidding themselves when they think that they are always the best advisor for their child and it’s unrealistic that one person can know all the answers to the questions a child might have. In addition, children benefit from multiple adults reinforcing right from wrong in a variety of circumstances. How many times have we heard from adults who talk about being reared in neighborhoods where all the mothers parented all the children on the block. These kids came into adulthood really understanding honesty and integrity.
    No one can replace you as your child’s mom; however, other parents can share in the development of your child. I agree with you…MTOs are not just for the Mom. Everyone benefits.

  2. Wow, thanks Jeannette, it’s so great to hear from a professional that I’m not crazy when it seems sometimes my girls listen better when a friend or family tell them the same thing my husband and I do! I also know my girls have really benefited from having some quality time with their Oma (Grandma) since she move closer to us, and we love to see them having a growing relationship with her, not to mention she gets to watch them grown and enjoy all the wonderful things that childhood brings!

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