to stop these playdates?

(112 Posts)

I have a local friend/acquaintance (we'll call her Helen) who has a DD the same age as mine (3). She invites my kids and myself over to hers every Tuesday for an hour or so. A few months back we had a brief falling out because her daughter was constantly snatching toys off my daughter and Helen would do nothing to address this. Every week my daughter would be in tears and not understand why the other girl wasn't being told off for being 'naughty'. A few weeks later, Helen assured me that her DD had improved her behaviour and asked if I would resume the Tuesday 'playdates'. I gave her the benefit of the doubt and agreed.

A few weeks passed with the kids playing nicely. Then today, the following happened:

When I arrived with my kids at the usual time, Helen's DD was playing with her friend (also 3) in the bedroom. My kids went upstairs to join them. The two girls let my DD into the bedroom but would not let my DS (2) because "no boys allowed". This is normal preschooler behaviour, of course.

DS started to cry. Helen said that DS could stay downstairs with us. So I took him downstairs. Lunch was served (chicken nuggets and chips). DS was given his to eat on a plate on the floor in the livingroom. Helen took the other 3 girls' lunch up to the bedroom. DS sat and ate his dinner, whilst asking where his sister was (they are very close being close in age). I admit, I felt so sad for him.

At this point, DS found a toy truck (the only toy of interest in a sea of pink tat - sorry, but we're talking Disney princess overload in that house). He becomes very engrossed in running the truck around the floor. Then we hear a scream from upstairs. I run upstairs to see. My DD is locked out of the bedroom and the other 2 girls won't let her in. Helen makes a half-hearted attempt at reasoning with the girls but her daughter slams the door on her face (!) My DD is very upset at this point and throws up. I clear up the vomit and bring DD downstairs to join DS, followed by Helen.

The 2 girls come down a few minutes afterwards. Helen's DD spies my DS playing with the truck and pushes him in the face and snatches it off him. He starts crying and trying to get the truck back. Helen makes a half hearted "DS was playing with that. It's a boys toy." Her DD continues to push him in the face as he tries to get it back.

I decide it is time to call game over on this visit and start putting DS' coat on as by this point, he is on the floor flaying around. Helen sits and watches and looks sheepish. As I bundle a flaying DS into his buggy, and then get DD's coat on, Helen says "I hope this won't stop you coming back next week. We'll see you next Tuesday yeah?" I nodded and quickly left.

AIBU to stop the playdates? No one is getting anything out of these visits. I refuse to let my kids be bullied, but I am not prepared to discipline someone else's kid.

Only1scoop Wed 29-Jan-14 15:48:19

"Don't worry....lets get them together at the park when the weather warms up a little and wear them out. See you soon"
And then just leave it.
It seems more trouble than it's worth at moment so I wouldn't make further plans yet.

MrsKent Wed 29-Jan-14 15:48:43

I'd say I can see you struggle to take a more disciplinarian role I am sure you love your dd very much but don't you think at times you need to be more firm?

Lioninthesun Wed 29-Jan-14 15:57:43

I think you just meet up less often and on neutral ground - soft play or park or something. That way you can keep them aware of each other in case they end up in the same class, not feel like a cow to the other mother (even though I agree with you she needs to learn to discipline her or she will be in for a very tough few years ahead!) and I think perhaps the other child being there may have been a mistake (not your DS the other girl playing when you arrived I mean). I do think is she felt she was on her turf, with another friend there already 'on-side' or whatever, your poor DD may have been on the back-foot. They are only kids though and if they usually get on well and you feel there would be a benefit, perhaps stopping them altogether is not quite right? If you could do it on a day when DS wasn't there it might help too? Just ideas. I have a friend a bit similar - don't agree on parenting ishoos etc - but the kids love playing so I grin and bear it, for now.

invicta Wed 29-Jan-14 16:09:18

Maybe she has read this thread...

horsetowater Wed 29-Jan-14 16:14:15

Ooo er...

Floggingmolly Wed 29-Jan-14 16:16:57

She hasn't seen that behaviour for a "long, long time"? But you have, evidently, haven't you? So the next playdate will be exactly the same as the last ones. Don't go.

amidaiwish Wed 29-Jan-14 16:18:04

I'd go with Only1scoop's suggestion

DuskAndShiver Wed 29-Jan-14 16:25:56

wombles, do you think she is apologising and wants to carry on because she wants to be friends with you; or because she wants the children to play together?

If she realised there was a problem with her dd behaviour she should have acted though shouldn't she? That's the whole problem. Her attitude, not her dd behaviour.

My thoughts exactly.

I will send your reply. I think its a good un.

Just seen Only1scoops reply. Perhaps more tactful so I'll use that one.

DuskAndShiver maybe a bit of both, with emphasis on the latter.

horsetowater Wed 29-Jan-14 16:33:27

Wombles, having children, watching them develop and grow up is a learning process for all adults. I think you are looking for a reason to break acquaintance with someone not because they are a bad person but because you don't like her very much. She's said sorry and hopefully she has learned.

I would focus on the children's wishes/needs, not hers or yours.

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