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This room is dedicated to those who are facing the challenge of raising children without the support of a spouse. This is a place to share ideas and lend mutual support.

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So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in the church anymore because she is so active that we may it about 5 minutes before I have to leave. We sit where the small children are supposed to sit and I still get dirty looks from other Catholics. Maybe I should just stop going until she is older.


I have tried bringing books, etc. but at the back of the church they have ramps and she loves to run up and down them. Frustrated.

Dec 23rd 2012 new

(Quote) Marirose-887295 said: So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in th...
(Quote) Marirose-887295 said:

So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in the church anymore because she is so active that we may it about 5 minutes before I have to leave. We sit where the small children are supposed to sit and I still get dirty looks from other Catholics. Maybe I should just stop going until she is older.

I have tried bringing books, etc. but at the back of the church they have ramps and she loves to run up and down them. Frustrated.

--hide--

Better yet - keep going to Mass and just smile back,i gnore the dirty looks, and say a quick prayer for them.

Dec 23rd 2012 new

(Quote) Marirose-887295 said: So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in th...
(Quote) Marirose-887295 said:

So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in the church anymore because she is so active that we may it about 5 minutes before I have to leave. We sit where the small children are supposed to sit and I still get dirty looks from other Catholics. Maybe I should just stop going until she is older.


I have tried bringing books, etc. but at the back of the church they have ramps and she loves to run up and down them. Frustrated.

--hide--
When my son was a toddler, he was semi-active, and I feared to annoy others at Mass. Some of the things I did:
I got permission to go into church when no one was there, and we looked all around so he got acquainted with the setting.
We practiced sitting still with hands folded, saying prayers.
I had explained that, when we are at Mass and there are people around us and the priest is talking, we are supposed to be silent until it is our turn to talk/pray.
I timed going to Mass when I knew it would be his nap time or quieter time.
I spent most Masses in the cry room.
When he wanted to wander, I would not let him. "No" is definitely a word he learned early. That, and "the look."
When his behavior was what I desired, he got lots of praise and hugs from me. When he acted up, I tried to distract him with something he liked.
I held him a lot during Mass and swayed.
At the time, it seemed I'd be struggling with his church behavior forever. It doesn't last.
Good luck!

Dec 23rd 2012 new

Keep going!!!! It will get better!! I had 6 very active children -- as long as they were quiet and tried their best, it was good enough. If running on the ramp happens, make it a reward for making it through Mass nicely. Bring quiet books -- but DON'T read them aloud during Mass!! Bring a small stuffed animal or quiet lovey if it helps. I kept a bag of special things only for Mass -- it was all quiet stuff and looked forward to. Talk to your children and remind them of the behavior you wish them to have every.single.time. Try to wear them out beforehand so they don't have a lot of pent up energy. Make sure children are not hungry or thirsty so they will have more ability to behave. Hold them. Don't let them run or talk loudly -- take them out if necessary but don't make going out a reward. Have appropriate expectations -- not too high or too low! And love them! Your little active one will learn to behave better each week -- if you don't bring him, how will he learn? Start young and keep consistent. (((hugs))) It will get easier.


(I took all 6 of mine to church from when they were babies and almost always alone -- my ex didn't often come.)

Dec 23rd 2012 new

(Quote) Marirose-887295 said: So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in th...
(Quote) Marirose-887295 said:

So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in the church anymore because she is so active that we may it about 5 minutes before I have to leave. We sit where the small children are supposed to sit and I still get dirty looks from other Catholics. Maybe I should just stop going until she is older.


I have tried bringing books, etc. but at the back of the church they have ramps and she loves to run up and down them. Frustrated.

--hide--
Don't have toddlers myself, but I see a number of them at Mass. Some consistently act up as if they were on a schedule to do this. If they are not about to be quiet, the parents bring them to the back entrance, or else relocate themselves to the family room.

See Jerry's comments. Good advice. I wonder how many of them acted up when they were little.

By all means, keep bringing them to Church. Our former pastor was emphatic about this, even though he knew it meant occasional disturbances. Sometimes the little ones can be sidetracked and quieted; at other times, nothing seems to work. If they don't come at all, they aren't getting the exposure to the Church surroundings.

Dec 23rd 2012 new

(Quote) Marirose-887295 said: So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in th...
(Quote) Marirose-887295 said:

So again today in church my toddler would not sit still. I don't even attempt to sit in the church anymore because she is so active that we may it about 5 minutes before I have to leave. We sit where the small children are supposed to sit and I still get dirty looks from other Catholics. Maybe I should just stop going until she is older.


I have tried bringing books, etc. but at the back of the church they have ramps and she loves to run up and down them. Frustrated.

--hide--



When my daughter was a toddler she actually did better sitting up front. This was a very scary prospect the first time. she messed around and talked non stop when we sat in back or the family room. But I really wanted to sit with my mom and grandma so the one week we sat up front with them (thats where the wheelchair area was for grandma). To my surprise, my daughter paid attention. She of course asked a lot of questions because she wanted to know what was happening. She was still a child so she still did child things but thankfully we had an understanding priest. the preist loved it when she was there, she would answer the questions in his sermon and react to the things he spoke about, and he found this entertaining. Everyone was understanding, knowing that this little 2 or 3 yr old was not trying to interrupt but was just very absorbed in what was being said and done.


Good Luck and God Bless, Marirose.

Dec 23rd 2012 new

I had the same problem, Marirose, with two little ones. It hardly felt like we could get anything out of being at mass when we would be banished to the toddler area that was basically a runway out in the hallway. I asked my sister, who I've always considered a saint, how she managed with four. She point blank said she didn't go when they were that young. I followed her lead and returned when they were about four years old. Whether that was the best solution, I don't know, but they are still there next to me now in their high school years.

I've seen many families with young children that squirmed and talked and fussed and fought grow up at mass. It was never a problem for me to have them there and the time does go really fast. If I had to do it over, I would bring them and ignore the dirty looks. We accept our children into our community at Baptism. I appreciate having them around, squirmy or not!

Dec 24th 2012 new

I have an active toddler and we sit in the "crying room" as well. I keep a bag packed of church toys and snacks that she only gets at church. She loves to color or draw during the Mass or place stickers in her notebooks. This past Mass she began getting restless so we walked outside for a minute and then came back in. She was good as gold and sat for the rest of the service. I try to keep her from disrupting others because I know they are trying to focus on God. But at the same time, each child has to learn how to behave in church and no one can expect them to be perfect all of the time. Just remember you are providing your child with a relationship with someone who will be there for them through the mountains and the valleys both by what you teach at home and by taking them to church. Hope that helps. biggrin

Dec 25th 2012 new

Thanks for the encouragement. Maybe someday I will get to actually pay attention again and not get so many dirty looks. She is never unhappy, just very active and loves to sing.

Dec 25th 2012 new
God bless you single parents.
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