Invitations to play

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from ElmiraGulch. Show ElmiraGulch's posts

    Invitations to play

    I don't know what to do with one child in the neighborhood.  When their daughter (kindergarten age) is playing outside and she sees my child, she will invite my child over to play.  I say no, as the invitation did not come from a parent or other caregiver.  Their daughter will then attempt to invite herself over to our house, again with no parental permission.  I again say no, that parents need to talk to each other for this to happen.

    This has happened at least twice a week for a month, with no action by the other parents.  My child hasn't sought out playing with their daughter, so I haven't extended an invitation to her parents. This girl does have other playmates over regularly, so I do not think I am depriving her of her only chance of peer contact.

    Am I reasonable in requesting that I speak with a parent/caregiver before permitting my child to enter a neighbor's property or the reverse?  Is there some way that I can approach this child's parents about her wandering the neighborhood for playmates unsupervised or should I leave that bit alone? 
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from ALF72. Show ALF72's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    Perhaps in this day and age you can't be too careful, but I really fail to see the problem here. I used to run in and out of neighborhood homes with other kids all the time when I was growing up [I'm 38].  Granted, moms were always home.  But that seems to be the case in your situation  - you are home as is the parent of the kid across or down the street.  Since this sounds like a regular occurrence, why not just approach the other mother 1 time and determine whether this is appropriate or not.  Other moms would send us home when it was dinner time or when they otherwise needed us to leave.  So did my mom.  I really don't see why you need a formal invitation to play for your child every single time your kid plays w/ this one. 
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    If it's a matter of anything other than pure safety I'd say it's a non-issue altogether.  What has happened to society that kids can't run around the neighborhood and play with each other?!
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from quadgirl1234. Show quadgirl1234's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I agree with Alf, just go over there 1 time and determine if you feel comfortable, once that is out of the way problem solved.  I know times have changed but just be more cautious.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from beniceboston. Show beniceboston's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    If she asks to play, why don't you walk over to her house with her and your daughter and meet her parents? They can play, and you can get a feel for what her mom & dad are like.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from LiveLoveLearnEnjoy. Show LiveLoveLearnEnjoy's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I agree with Benice.  You could go over and introduce yourself and meet the girls parents so you would feel better.  Unless you really don't want your daughter playing with her.  It was always nice growing up with other kids on our street...we played games like tag.  It might be nice for your daughter to have friends who live right on the same street.
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from bugmenotscreen. Show bugmenotscreen's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    Is there a reason you haven't gone over and talked with the girl's parents?

    This is what kids do.  They see other kids their age and want to escape the boring world of grown-ups.  Get over there, meet the parents, exchange phone numbers, establish that it's a safe environment and so on.

    I really like it when my kid plays with the other kids in the neighborhood.  They require far less supervision, wear each other out and generally have a great time while they are at it.

    All that said, it's not unreasonable to have some limits so you don't impose on the other family and they don't impose on you.  It's also important to find out if the other kid has food allergies or some othe health conditions you should be aware of before you have peanut butter crackers and have to call the ambulance.
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I feel like this post was generated by a robot alien trying to understand our strange human ways. "What is this thing you call 'friendship'? Is its purpose to further a goal of mutual improvement?"
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from canukgrl. Show canukgrl's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    Depends on how old the kids are... I HOPE when my DD is school aged, she can play mong the neighbours in their yards without a formal invite.  However, she's 3, so she doesn't go over to a neighbours without a parental synch-up.

    We played all over the neighbourhood when we were kids, but weren't allowed to play INSIDE other kids houses without parental consent.  I like this for a couple of reasons - first, you aren't inadvertantly putting another parent out, and second, there are kids in the neighbourhood that I don't have issue with the kids playing with outside, but under no circumstances do I want them inside this particular house. 
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from ElmiraGulch. Show ElmiraGulch's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I understand the suggestions made for older children, depending on the maturity of the child, perhaps age 9+, having standing invitations established along with reasonable boundaries (not farther than X house, etc).  However, as I stated in the beginning, this girl is in kindergarden so presumably age 5 or 6.  I was under the impression that at this age, direct adult supervision was required by law at all times. Is this not the case?

    I do not know that her parents are home as they are not visible in any way when she lands on my doorstep.  The family is large and contains 15-year old children through nephews in diapers.  She may be under the care of one of her older siblings when she approaches my child. This is why I asked if there was some way to approach these parents regarding "her wandering the neighborhood for playmates unsupervised".

    I have met the parents of this family on several occasions.  Our conversaions have been generally pleasant but neither of us have sought out the other for potential friendship or for any play opportunities for children.  The only thing we seem to have in common is present geography.  As I stated before, my child has expressed no interest in playing with this girl.

    Finally, I apologize if my language or questions seem strange.  I am not from here and sometimes struggle with the different customs and conventions of the region.  It is for this reason that I ask questions here.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from lissafro. Show lissafro's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    If your daughter isn't interested in playing, just say "no thank you" and leave it at that.  If she starts showing interest or if you feel like it would be beneficial for her to play with other kids around the same age, walk across the street, introduce yourself to the parents, and invite the neighbor's kid over to play in the yard.  Then you can be in charge of supervision and not have to worry.  Invite the parents over to hang out and chat while the girls play and you'll get to meet the mom too.  That can inform future decisions about letting your child play over at the other house. 
    It's nice to have neighbors of kids the same age.  When they are in school together in the future you'll have people you know to call who can pick the kid up in an emergency if you're running late or something like that.
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I still don't understand what you're asking. Your daughter doesn't want to play with this girl and you don't want her to play with this girl. So when she asks your daughter to come over, or wants to come over to your house, you politely decline. Which you're already doing. It seems like what you really want to know is if it's okay for you to tell your neighbors that their daughter is annoying you and they are bad, neglectful parents for letting it happen. If that's the case, go for it. But it won't do any good, and will probably result in some serious awkwardness.

    Alternately, you could put up a very, very tall fence.

    [I know there's a better word for "put up" but it's banned!]
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from canukgrl. Show canukgrl's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I think it's ok to politely, but firmly, decline... she'll get it eventually. 

    The family I"m not crazy about that I mentioned above, has a DD 1yr older than mine and another 4-5 years older than mine and the older one used to come to our yard ALL THE TIME, usually not with her younger sibling in tow.  This is a house where the youngers are often supervised by the teen (who is now a parent himself at 17) - not that my DD was old enough at the time, but its not an environment I want her hanging out in, ever.  In addition, the little girl had no sense of boundaries, and I just assumed that talking to her parents wasn't going to change that.

    I was never unkind to her, but I was clear.  If she came over when we were eating a meal or had company on the deck - I sent her home.  If she was walking around our deck contruction in bare feet, I sent her home.  If I caught her on that same deck when I was working at home (ie no kids at home) I sent her home.  Needless to say, we don't see much of her any more.  I felt like just because her parents weren't teaching her about boundaries, I should't have to deal with her, so I set my own boundaries.  By the way, my parents would have/said all of the above to kids who were my friends... they did come back :)

    I hope this helps.  It's your kids, your yard, your life, but also your neighbors.  So set your boundaries (in your mind, I don't mean build large fences, neccesarily) and then just try to treat your neighbours like you'd like to be treated.  You don't have to be best buddies, but exchanging pleasantries makes life a little nicer.
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    It is quite normal for a 5-6 year old to be playing outside with minimal supervision (meaning parent in house actively listening to children play-but strict ground rules-Don't go out of the yard, beyond X's house etc.). I know my neighbor's kids are out playing in the front yard all the time, and the yongest is now 5, he was out there at age 3 with his older brother who was 5 at the time. Sometimes the parents are outside socializing, sometimes not.

    It's a sad state of our current fear culture to keep kids playing inside and only under structured play. I used to ride my bike to a different neighborhood to play with a friend when I was 5-6 years old-alone!

    I find most other cultures still embrace the neighborhood gang approach to playing. I know my nephews (age 7 and 4) who live in another country run off to play in the neighborhood all the time for hours at end!

    If your child expressed a strong opinion against this child I'd deny the play requests, but if they just haven't expressed an interest doesn't mean they won't have fun if they play together!

    What region of the world are you from Elmira?

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from paul0. Show paul0's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    "The only thing we seem to have in common is present geography"

    Quite honestly that seems rather snobbish and I think you are missing out on a lot.  Not only can your child be exposed to new people and new ways of doing things, not to metion new and novel toys, but you also build a freindship with your nieghbor.  The following "benefits" of knowing your neighbors well may sound cold and calculating, but keep in mind a good neighbor will also reciprocate on these things in some manner, as well:

    - Watching your child when you are in a pinch (you are sick, hospitalized, otherwise unable to parent effectively, have to attend a funeral)
    - Watering your plants, feeding your pet while you are on vacation
    - Keeping an eye on your house while you are away (that moving van shouldn't be there ... and why are the movers wearing ski masks? :) )
    - Accepting important deliveries
    - Borrowing tools, pans, dishes, etc
    - Snowblowing / lawn mowing for you while you are away
    - Rides to the mechanic to pick up your car
    - Plus many other innumerable things people do to help each other out. 
    - Plus, it sounds like the older children are of prime age to be babysitters.

    Do these people need to be your best friends in the world?  No, they don't.  But if you can establish some level of friendship or civility, you'll likely find that it benefits both of you and makes your neighborhood a nicer place to be.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from GC1016. Show GC1016's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    I feel bad for this poor kid who just wants to play with the little girl next door and keeps getting shot down. 
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from ElmiraGulch. Show ElmiraGulch's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    Thank you for your comments and information.  They have been very helpful.

    I was under the impression that US law required strict monitoring of children under the age of 9-12, depending upon jurisdiction.  It is nice to know that may not be the case.

    In the instance of this family, I will take the advice offered and be more clear with saying no to the girl.  My child has no interest in playing with her and I do not see a reason to force them together.  She has other playmates, as does my child - I doubt either would be considered deprived.

    With this family, I will continue to keep things pleasant, of course, but I also do not need to force anything. To build up an artificial friendship for self-serving, needless matters is, to me, quite rude and ultimately will show our family in a very poor light. Better that we are honest and allow a relationship to grow naturally, if appropriate.
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Invitations to play

    In Response to Re: Invitations to play:
    I feel like this post was generated by a robot alien trying to understand our strange human ways. "What is this thing you call 'friendship'? Is its purpose to further a goal of mutual improvement?"
    Posted by lemonmelon

    OMG, lemon, you honestly make me laugh so hard drinks come out my nose.

     
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