Saturday, February 1, 2014

Dys-funk-tional Play

I'm in a funk.  I'm trying not to wallow, but I just might have to marinate here for a bit.

It's the weekend.  It's time to do stuff with our kids.  All the good moms on Facebook are posting pictures of the cookies they're baking, projects they're crafting, or at the very least, the messes their kids are making as they play.  And hence, my funk.

My kid doesn't play.

Our house looks like a kindergarten.  Or an OT room.  We have colorful bins of differently themed toys.  We have blocks and books and flash cards and Handy Manny tools.  We have dolls and clothes and bottles and diapers.  We have doctor's kits and games and every damn developmental piece of wood that Melissa and Doug ever created.  We even have a bin devoted to different types of plastic airplanes.

The boy wants none of it.

All he wants to do is carry his Phineas and Ferb figures around the house and script about not breaking toys--right before he pulls them apart.  Then he brings me the pieces to pop into place.  Sometimes they won't pop into place and I have to hide them in a coffee cup until I can glue them back together.  And sometimes having to wait for the glue to dry is more than he can bear and he has a meltdown.  I've learned to keep back-ups.
I'm about to glue my fingers together.

This isn't playing.

His therapist is working on functional play.  We have a wooden train set, and it's like a chore for him to set that up.  He'll paint for about two minutes.  Play-doh goes almost directly in his mouth and gets put away.  Last year, he showed a fleeting interest in the dollhouse at school, so I got him one from eBay.  He doesn't touch it.

This morning I tried to incorporate his obsession into real play.  I took out the Legos and suggested we build a house for Perry.  He said yes, but as soon as we started, he yelled, "No more!" and started throwing the bricks back in the bin.  Then he asked for a movie.

I can't let eating, breaking toys, and watching videos be the only thing he does at home.  But I also don't want to fight with him all the time.  It's Saturday.  I spend all week teaching other people's kids and now I want to play with my own.

(Sigh.)  Maybe Big Bro will let me shoot zombies with him on his Playstation.


  1. Hugs. No words of wisdom, but lots of sympathy. My younger one rarely plays with toys either. He wants to either be eating, climbing trees or watching videos so I get it.

  2. Alex paces, watches cartoons, and eats Fruit Loops <3 I get it.

  3. youtube, showers, noggin.
    Ben has 3 rooms in our house dedicated to his every whim. No interest in any of it.
    How I would love to be bored sick by candy land, old maid, war.
    The grass is always greener.

  4. Yup to all of that. I seriously LOL'd at the "every piece of developmental wood" because it's just so spot on.

  5. So, you've obviously been a fly on my wall every weeknight/weekend. He doesn't play either, unless you count his Leappad or the toy keyboard his grandparents got him last Christmas. Mostly he climbs on everything he can, chews on nylon straps (don't get me started) and wants to watch Super Why.