I think this is a question a lot of parents find hard to answer.
I am not going to pretend I absolutely love playing with my son every minute of the day, but I do enjoy playing with him.
In my opinion, when you chose to have children you give up your life for the next 16-18 years (or longer!) to be there for your child’s needs. This is not to say you can’t still have adult time, however, your children come first.
Yes, this will include doing things that maybe you aren’t too entertained by, but so what? Even if I am not particularly enjoying a game we are playing, seeing my son happy makes me happy.
I think parents have a big responsibility to teach their children how to play both by themselves and with others. How many times have you been to a playgroup and seen either a child sat on their own or running around taking toys off other children as they have not been taught how to play properly? I am not professing to be the perfect mum who drops everything as soon as my son wants to play and yes, there are times that jobs need doing and I have to say no. However, at weekends my husband and I will take it in turns to play or we will find something we can all play together.
I don’t consider ‘play’ to be just using toys. I think anything you can make fun and do together with your child could be considered ‘playing’. For instance baking, crafts, even getting them to help you with the cleaning can be made into a fun game.
It is hard sometimes to find the imagination to play with your children, and I must admit I do prefer playing actual games or doing jigsaws.
I do think it is important for children to learn to play on their own too, but sometimes I find my son needs starting off with something, then he will quite happily carry on playing on his own.