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To expect that a mum supervises the children on a play date?

(307 Posts)
Livvilou Tue 19-Feb-13 20:27:30

Please bear with this long post. At my DDs school play dates are common. I am not so bothered about them as I didn't go to people's houses when I was a child. My DD went to a child's house the mother told me she would pick her up from school. I called later and it seemed to me the mother was not at her house as expected. I sent my DH to pick up our daughter and the mother of the child said she had run an errand and left my DD with her partner and her daughter. Her partner had also picked up my DD from school but I didn't even know his name, he has only ever said hello to me and she said she would pick up my DD. my DD didn't have a good time at the playdate because her daughter didn't want to play with my DD because another friend of hers was also at the house. The same mother asked if my DD could go on another play date and this time I spoke to her about what happened last time. She claimed to have no knowledge of the fact that her daughter didn't want to play with mine. Which is ludicrous as she told this to my husband when he came to pick up DD and my DD told me what happened too.
Today my DD went to another child house. This child was supposed to come to our house and this morning her father tell me she wants my DD to come to her house. I said this isn't what has been agreed. The father says he asked his daughter today and she wanted my DD to come to their house. He then asks my DD if she wants to go to their house. Of course she says yes. I was livid! The mother made the original appointment with me, and didn't tell me she would be working. I dropped my DD off at the house and her friend comes to the door in a vest and pants and I wonder what she is doing. Her father says she is dressing up. I pick my DD up an hour later and find that she has also been dressing up and has to put her trousers and socks on before she can go home with me. I do not feel happy having my DD being supervised my male partners. I am not saying that anything has happened but I can't imagine why this isn't seen as strange. My DH spoke with our DD and told her she is not to undress at anyone's house and she said the house was really hot, and she is right as I remember thinking that as I stood at the living room door. I understand that dads also look after their kids and i think that is great, but in the climate that we live today, I need to feel I am doing every thing I can to keep my DD safe without being paranoid. Any thoughts as I have been in a distressed state all day. Not only because a 5 year old managed to change the plans, but because I feel now I have to explain myself to keep my DD safe. I am sure I will upset someone if I say what I really want, ie. for the mother to be there at the play date. I have felt terrible all day from the worry.

HollyBerryBush Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:04

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MagicHouse Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:09

I don't think you're being unreasonable to worry about your little girl. She is only 5, and the fact of the matter is that she was left with someone who is a complete stranger to you. I wouldn't worry about offending anyone. Just say with a smile that you worry about her as she's so little, and you'd rather she have friends at yours until she's older. If they persist, just smile and say, it's just how you feel.
I remember being one of the last parents to stay at parties with my little girl (now nearly 7). I still stay at some of the parties, whereas some parents will happily leave their 4 year olds. The important thing here is how you feel - you didn't feel happy with it, so it doesn't have to happen again.
I know lots of mums who feel like you - it's not about whether your dd is looked after by a mum or a dad, it's about you knowing/ trusting that person, before you entrust your little girl into their care. There's nothing wrong with feeling like that, and telling people you worry can always be said in a way that shouldn't cause offense.

Dereksmalls Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:18

Ok, my DH is the one around for most of the play dates as we both work FT but it's easier for him to work from home.

I thought about showing him this thread to see the look on his face but then realised I don't want hmm faces every time
I say "I read on Mumsnet..."

YABU

And actually quite remarkable

WorraLiberty England Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:20

Look in "This day and age" as some people are so fond of saying...

Kids are probably far more at risk from parents (of either sex) being glued to their mobile phones instead of supervising, than being sexually assaulted on a 'play date'.

If I had £1 for every parent I see on the school run, glued to their screens with kids lagging way behind them - or running far in front while they're obliviously texting MNetting I'd have a regular income of about £15 per week....

TheChaoGoesMu Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:42

but I don't think it is ok for my 5 year old to have got undressed in someone else's house

every 5 yr old that has crossed the doorstep into my house has whipped their clothes off within 30 mins and delved into dd's wardrobe or dressing up box. And we have had a fair few different 5 year olds visit. This is completely normal, I dont know how you could stop it without looking very odd.

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 20:58:52

I don't think OP is being entirely unreasonable. Isn't it good to know who will be watching your 5 yr old?

mamadoc Tue 19-Feb-13 20:59:42

Every single play date dd has they rush straight for the dressing up box. Totally normal 5 yr old thing! Never crossed my mind to worry about it. If you worry about 'anything else that might happen' then have a conversation with dd so that she knows.

NulliusInBlurba Tue 19-Feb-13 20:59:50

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

freddiefrog Tue 19-Feb-13 20:59:50

God, my DH picks the kids up more than I do. I can't imagine that anyone would be bothered that my DH, rather than I, walked their PFB the 10 minutes home from school.

Whichever one of us is free, picks them up and supervises them. DH even cooks their tea!

What would you do if your DD had a male teacher who had to supervise the melee of getting changed for PE?

FannyBazaar Tue 19-Feb-13 20:59:57

I thought the play date was an arrangement for the two children to play together, it didn't occur to me that it would matter who picked them up, it is about your child joining the other child in whatever they are doing.

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 21:00:16

But Magic, she has said that it's about men supervising

apostropheuse Tue 19-Feb-13 21:01:24

I actually couldn't read your post as all the words just jumbled together because of the lack of paragraphs. Maybe it's because I wear glasses, but I had to stop reading as I was seriously struggling.

However, if, as others seem to have grasped, you're complaining about a dad being the adult in charge of a "play date" then you're being totally unreasonable and sexist.

Totally off thread here, but can anyone tell me where this term "play date" originated? I seem to see it lots on here but I've never heard of it until I joined this forum!

ginmakesitallok Tue 19-Feb-13 21:01:26

One of dd's friends comes to ours every Friday. Sometimes OK can't be here and do picks them up from school, gives them their tea, makes sure they are changed for brownies, beings friend home. I am confused as to why this would be strange? Men do look after children these days?

Littlefish Tue 19-Feb-13 21:01:54

You are being ridiculous. This is a massive over-reaction on your part. I would be really hurt and annoyed if I was the parent of any child in your dd's class and found out your opinion of my dh (and seemingly, all men).

I think, given your opinions, that it would be better if you didn't accept any play dates with your child's friends.

in this day and age ??? Wtf?

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:02:50

I would just be present next time. Also, for those saying OP is being sexist... yes i can see that but unfortunately most abuse does happen at the hands of men, so it's not entirely unfounded. Like I said, just have playdates where you are present if you dont know the people involved.

5madthings Tue 19-Feb-13 21:03:46

I don't seethe problem, my dp regularly pics my kids up and their friends and they are of tern picked hip by friends parents either mum or dad.

The dress up thing is normal as well, when I went to collect mine from their last 'play date' they were in various states of undress/dress, ds3 had a princess dress on. The kids were having a ball.

I don't specify if it will be more or dp as I font always know in advance which one of us will be doing the school run and things come up at the last minute etc.

WorraLiberty England Tue 19-Feb-13 21:04:07

Totally off thread here, but can anyone tell me where this term "play date" originated? I seem to see it lots on here but I've never heard of it until I joined this forum!

My guess is America

Either way it makes me want to puke up my kidneys when I read it.

Imagine how I felt earlier when I had to type it....

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:04:20

* and telling people you worry can always be said in a way that shouldn't cause offense.*

Is there a way of saying that you don't think my husband can be trusted alone with small girls without causing offence? hmm

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 21:04:42

If DP was picking up a child/supervising and I had made the plans with the other parent I would text the parent to say he was collecting and give them his mobile number. But until this thread it wouldn't have occurred to me that anyone would have a problem with it.

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:05:00

You cant compare your own partners with every man on the planet.

littlestressy Tue 19-Feb-13 21:06:05

Just refuse all future playdates....or have them all at your house, with your DH out of the house and nowhere in the vicinity. Fun.

apostropheuse Tue 19-Feb-13 21:06:42

grin Literally laughed out loud at Either way it makes me want to puke up my kidneys when I read it Worra

I totally agree.

What the hell's wrong with saying going to play at a friend's house?

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:07:13

* unfortunately most abuse does happen at the hands of men, so it's not entirely unfounded. Like I said, just have playdates where you are present if you dont know the people involved*

Most abuse happens within the family with people they know. She won't get many playdates-I had them so the DCs could amuse themselves-I didn't invite parents-and had no intention of doing so.

Dereksmalls Tue 19-Feb-13 21:07:16

"play date", no idea but it's what the DCs say. In my day it was "Are yous gahn tae ma bit?" which was pure poetry.

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