>Playdate Paranoia

>So I’m a little bit obsessed about knowing what is going on with my kids at all times.  With Mack in college this year, it has helped me to lighten up a little, teeny tiny bit, but then again maybe not.

I have always been okay with play dates at our house.  This is pretty obvious.  It’s under my control, I know what’s going on.  My kid is not with any strangers.  Mea really only has two friends she has play dates with.  Her cousin S, who hello, that’s a given.  I can even discipline her if I need to.  She has another friend from daycare that she has pretty regular play dates with, and I have known her dad forever, and have gotten to know her mom pretty well over the last few years.  I trust them, to take care of her like they would their own kids, and I think that feeling is mutual.

Today, when picking Mea up from school, one of the mom’s handed my husband a note with their phone number asking for us to call sometime for a play date.  I asked him what she looked like.  “She was really short.  Oh, and she had really red hair.” 

Are you kidding me?  Was she clean?  Did she look like a nice mom or a weirdo?  He said, “It was hard to tell, I don’t know.”

There is another girl at daycare, who’s always asking for our number so Mea can come over.  I think her mom and dad are both idiots in the small fraction of time that I have ever had anything to do with them.  Since my sitter obviously has more time to interact with them then I ever would, I asked her what she thought, and she told me that she wouldn’t let Mea go over there.  That is scary.

The truth of the matter is you just never know.  Sometimes even the kind of gross looking mom’s can be fine.  Sometimes the really nice looking ones can be super stupid and not pay one bit of attention to the kids.

The best thing to do is to have play dates where you stick around for the play date, or have it at your house the first couple of times.  Unless you really know the person.  You just never know.

When Mack was in the fourth grade, she was invited to a sleep over party at a hotel.  I had met the girls mom, so I said she could go not a problem.  When we got to the hotel, it turned out that the girls dad and step-mom were throwing the party.  There were three hotel rooms.  Two that were joined together, and another that was separate, but next to the other two. 

I was really nervous.  I was completely freaked out.  I had talked to Mack on the way there about how after 10:00 pm, I didn’t want her outside of the hotel room.  That if the other girls were, she wasn’t to be.  Before I left her there I told her that if she needed anything to call me.

I nearly went back and picked her up twice.  I just felt weird.  I didn’t like the dad.  The step mom was weird.  They were jointly celebrating her son’s birthday, who was turning 13.  So there were boys there. 

I got there the next morning, early.  Half an hour early.  Mackenzie was dressed and packed ready to go sitting on one of the beds.  I knew something messed up had happened.

We got to the car, and I asked.  Initially Mack wouldn’t tell me.  Then she told me that the step mom came into the room at midnight, and said it was time to go out and go TPing.  Mack said, “I can’t go, I promised my Mom I wouldn’t leave the hotel.”  The step mom called her all kinds of names, finally got someone who was barely an adult to stay with her, and they all left to go TPing.

I told her how proud I was of her.  That I was sorry that stupid woman even put her in that kind of position, and would go so far as to call her names, etc.

Mack went shopping in the afternoon with my Mom.  While they were out Mack wasn’t acting like herself.  When my Mom asked her what was wrong, she started crying, told her about the TPing thing, and then told her that she was so tired, because she didn’t get ANY sleep.  One of the boys from the “boy” part of the party slept in their room, and she was uncomfortable with it, so she couldn’t sleep.  She was afraid to call and wake me up.

We got this down pretty fast.  It’s always okay to wake your Mom and/or Dad up. 

Mom always needs to follow her gut instinct.  Always.

The girls mom?  Got an earful.  She definitely got to meet Mean Kelly that day.

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2 Comments on “>Playdate Paranoia”

  1. Jen says:

    >Thank you for this. You just confirmed a "gut feeling" I had about a playdate. 🙂

  2. Kimberly says:

    >Whew when that day comes, I am sure that I will be feeling the exact same thing. Letting go and trusting is difficult. I may need someone to hold me when that day comes 😉


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