Best ways to distract your child while on the telephone

Tip: don't suffocate your child even if it's a really important call

Tip: don't suffocate your child even if it's a really important call

Ring ring. Ring ring. Your phone is ringing, you’re fairly sure that it was last spotted somewhere in the vicinity of the baby, and you’re not entirely sure a) how you’re supposed to get it back from aforementioned baby and b) how to keep it in your possession long enough to actually have a phone conversation. Behold: ways to distract a child so that you can make or take a phone call.

Do it while the child is sleeping

Unfortunately this one only works when they’re young enough to nap, unless your clients don’t mind taking late night calls (actually mine don’t, which is lucky really.) Of course, this one can also be hampered by the sound of the ringing telephone waking up the child in question. Ask me how I know?

Have a special phone toy

If you are likely to take only a few phone calls per week, it might be worth investing in a special toy that only comes out when you need to chat. The novelty of something different should keep the child entertained for long enough for you to get your point across.

Give them their own telephone

If your little one likes to copy, they may find their own telephone more distracting than a special toy. This could either be an old phone of yours or a plastic toy phone. Depending on the age of the child, you may even get away with giving them a remote control as long as you imitate talking into it first!

Offer them the breast / a bottle

In my experience this only works prior to around 9 months when babies get distracted from feeding by everything and anything around them, but when mine were teeny I’d fit in all the really important calls around long feeds because I knew that milk would be much more interesting that my phone.

Use a food distraction

My emergency fallback: if all else fails, hand the kid a biscuit. This could be an organic gluten-free sugar-free homemade biscuit packed with hidden vegetables or a chocolate chip cookie from a packet depending on how you fly. Either way it’s guaranteed to buy you at least a couple of minutes which is often enough to pacify the wolves children.

OK, I admit, I thought I’d be able to come up with more ideas than this but clearly I so quickly resort to using food it’s never been an issue. So what are you top ways to distract a child or infant while you’re on the telephone?