playdates ... as your kid gets older?

Parents of middle-schoolers/ high schoolers -- do you let your child go to other kids' houses if you don't know the parents well?

My kids live for playing with their friends and have playdates a lot. We've made a big effort to get to know all their friends and their friends' parents quite well, and so I have in the past always felt very comfortable with the family when my kids were over at another child's house.

Now my oldest is almost 10, and branching out socially to friends who are children of people either I don't know at all or I don't particularly trust. Not that I think they're child molesters or anything, but I have no relationship with them, and hence no particular confidence. We generally try to have her invite the new friend to our house first, and we always tell the parent that we know it's weird to leave a kid off at a house where you don't know the parents, so we invite them to come in for coffee or something. Sometimes they take us up on it; sometimes not. If not (and they don't return the offer), I'm less than comfortable sending her over to the other kid's house later.

With my oldest, at least I still have the excuse that she has medical issues and I need to go in with her to explain them to the parent before I leave her off. I won't have that excuse with two of my other kids. And I'm realizing that in middle school, or high school, there are probably limits to how much you can screen your kids' friends' parents without coming off as rude as hell. Would you refuse to let a middle-schooler or high schooler go to a friend's house if you didn't know the parents? How do you go about getting to know the parent enough to satisfy you, and generally satisfying yourself that it's okay for your child to go over there, without coming off as a raving paranoid lunatic?

2 Answers

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    My oldest is only 9 so I still insist on having at least some contact w/the playdate parent prior to the playdate but I know at some point, I'll have to trust that he's going to tell me if he feels uncomfortable at someone's house. By the time they are old enough to pretty much handle themselves, they will be tested by outside influences and that can include their friends' parents. All you can do at that point is to remind them that you need communication and hope that they will tell you if something's amiss. You can also invite the child over and force interaction w/the parents when picking him/her up. If your child is picking up bad habits or attitudes after spending time w/this child, that can be a sign that you might want to guard that playdate a little more.

  • kolker
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    I had the identical difficulty years in the past and here's what I did A couple of minutes earlier than her mother obtained there I mentioned "Leah, your mother will probably be right here in a couple of mins so we must get your sneakers and coat on. Rhian (my daughter) and I relatively loved you coming over to play and we desire you to return once more, however you'll handiest come if you're a well lady and concentrate on your mommy. When your mommy comes you must pass house with out crying. Can you do this?" She mentioned sure. When her mother obtained there and rang the bell I mentioned "Come on Leah. Your mother is right here. (We opened the door in combination) and I instantly mentioned Leah and Rhian had a excellent time in these days and Leah goes to return again to discuss with us subsequent weekend, are not you Leah?" Leah mentioned "Yes however I cant cry" and I mentioned "Thats correct" She grabbed her bag of toys that she introduced and walked correct out the door. I advised her mother that I advised her to not throw a have compatibility and he or she might come again for one more playdate and her mother was once very appreciative. Let the youngster recognize that he can handiest come on your condo if he has well conduct while its time to move.

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