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.

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 20:35:32

I don't see the difference between it being a man or a woman. I probably wouldn't be happy for my child to be in a house where I didnt know the family well. I don't child is only 3 but you never really know anyone well enough do you...tricky

WorraLiberty Tue 19-Feb-13 20:36:09

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

orangeandlemons Tue 19-Feb-13 20:38:06

Now I'm worried! Dd has a play date tomorrow. I can't be here so dh is hosting it. I have told the parents though!

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 20:40:20

What's ODFOD?

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 20:40:35

So...... If one of your DDs friends didn't have a mum or had one that worked F/T and the Dad was SAH, then you wouldn't allow your daughter to socialise with them?

Do you think the filthy paedo had the heating up so high, so that the girls would strip off? hmm

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:42:18

I thought that you were going to say that they were left at home alone-she only popped out for an errand and the father was there-I don't see the problem. Children like to play dressing up.
My DH is perfectly normal and responsible-heaven help the thought that children are not safe unless I am there to protect them!

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 20:43:15


exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:43:18

I looked up ODFOD and it wasn't there-I can't work it out.

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

auntpetunia Tue 19-Feb-13 20:43:31

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

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 20:44:00

This will blow your mind OP:
Some people see parents as equal to each other in role, so it wouldn't occur to them say who would be picking the children up/supervising them.

Would you allow your DH to host a 'play date' (eughhhh)? Would he be happy to?

RVPisnomore Tue 19-Feb-13 20:44:01

Seriously, I think you are massively over reacting and worrying. I think it's good that play dates still go ahead even if the mum isn't there. Seems to me that in these situations men are damned if they do and damned if they don't.

Islagiatt Tue 19-Feb-13 20:44:51

I think you need to take a deep breath. Your child is 5, you know the family they are at your child's school. It's a play date - you know - for fun? If your child was that unhappy the first time they wouldn't have said they would go the second. Children are like that.

You will end up ill if a simple invitation to a play date causes you a 'terrible day from all the worry'. The only option for you would seem to be never accept another invitation for your child ever again to 'keep them safe' - whilst they may well be safe they will be pretty miserable and cut off from their friends.

If you don't know the family, on the first date, take them to the house, introduce yourself and satisfy yourself all is ok.

WorraLiberty Tue 19-Feb-13 20:45:31

If I invited a child around to play and my personal plans changed, I wouldn't think twice about sending my DH to pick them up and supervise them/cook dinner etc...

In fact it's happened a few times over the last 21yrs and thankfully no-one else has batted an eyelid either.

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

NotInMyDay Tue 19-Feb-13 20:46:16

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

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:46:43

It would never occur to invite a child home and have to specify that it was me and not DH-we are equal parents. Many fathers are the SAHD -some are even single fathers-do their DCs have to miss out? Seriously?!

Shakirasma Tue 19-Feb-13 20:47:28

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

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

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 20:47:49

Tell all the parents that you don't trust any of the H's with your DD. the invites will soon dry up and you will be saved all the anxiety wink

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

Guitargirl Tue 19-Feb-13 20:49:08

OP - I may be way off the mark here but are you from a culture where it is considered unusual for mothers to work and for fathers to be at home with the children?

TheChaoGoesMu Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:12

I cant see a problem op, unless theres something you're not saying. My dd often goes round to her friends house where the dh is in sole charge. And the dressing up is pretty normal for 5 yr olds at eachothers houses.

WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:15

I can see this has really worried you and I'm wondering if there is an underlying reason for it? Because otherwise you are spouting paranoid, sexist nonsense, you do know that don't you?

mummysbigsmiles Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:25

Call me over protective but i would be very unhappy about my child undressing in someone's house i didnt know, my dd is only 5 months but in this day and age you can never be too safe... Which, in my opinion is ashame and it leads us to scaring the life out of our children... Dont do this dont do that. I too would be unhappy.

NopeStillNothing Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:26

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

maddening Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:33

Maybe if you always do drop off and if jt is the partner (male or female) that you don't know say you'll take dd inside and speak to that person. You will have a little chance to get to know them.

Also maybe arrange a playdate at a soft play where all the adults come too and have a coffee and chat and see them interacting with the dc.

Mogandme Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:36

Whats the actual problem?

Playdate 1 - Mum has to go to an appointment/runs late; chids father picks up, children play, all is well

Playdate 2 - Child says she doesn't want to play at her friends house after school, Dad thinks "oh bugger other child may be upset at cancelled plans - I'll see if they want to come to us instead" When you drop off child is half way into getting into her fairy outfit but very eager to open the door and greet her friend. Girls play and DC decides to also do dressing up - You arrive and she has to get changed into her proper clothes.

Is that the jist of it?

Livvilou Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:43

I understand all what has been said and I am certainly not suggesting that every man is a paedo as my DH I would trust with my l holders life. But I would never tell a parent that I was picking up their child and then let my DH pick up the child and the child and the parent doesn't know him. I think dressing up is fine but I don't think it is ok for my 5 year old to have got undressed in someone else's house, am I to assume that she knows the difference between taking clothes off for dressing up and anything else that could happen?

SizzleSazz Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:48

I thought this was about me as i let the kids run riot supervise themselves while i worked in the garden grin

I am more than happy for my DD to be supervised by a dad and dress up (that's what they do at that age isn't it?)

Mind you DD2 (4) walked into a house, stripped off to dress up and wasn't wearing any pants blush

<misses point of thread>

VinegarDrinker Tue 19-Feb-13 20:51:35

Er, yes. YABU. Massively so.

mamadoc Tue 19-Feb-13 20:51:56

DH and I work 4 days each so both of us host play dates on our days off. He does most school drop offs and pick ups too as do many, many other dads at our school. I couldn't care less what gender the parent responsible is I care much more whether I know and trust them. If I didn't I would ask to come too the first time (dd is also 5). Do you live in 1959??

bangersnmash Tue 19-Feb-13 20:52:15

Seriously is this for real?
If so ,have my very first biscuit

Kyrptonite Tue 19-Feb-13 20:52:25

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

VinegarDrinker Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:14

" in this day and age you can never be too safe"

The overwhelming majority of child abuse is committed by family members.

WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:30

I don't think many 5 yo's would say they 'knew' me and I am at the school gate every single day twice. If you send your child to my home you are likely to encounter the people who live in my home, one of them is my DH.

Rainbowinthesky Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:35

As the mother of a nine year old dd I can tell you that girls change into each others clothes all the time at each others houses. I have frequently picked up dd from a house with just a man there and dh has had her friends home.
OP, you might need to consider counselling as you are extremely paranoid.

coldcupoftea Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:54

It wouldn't bother me at all. I used to work weekends, so DH would always be the one supervising weekend playdates, taking the kids to parties etc. Once the parents were running late and it was nearly bedtime so he put all the kids in the bath together (this was the DC of good friends though, not a random playdate from school!)


WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 20:54:14

I also know a playgroup supervisor who is a man.
And women abuse children too OP.

TheChaoGoesMu Tue 19-Feb-13 20:54:19

I think you need to think very carefully op before you act and really think about what people have said here. Unless you have justification for what you are saying, you are going to have one very unhappy 5 yr old with no future playdates.

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

mummysbigsmiles Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:03

I dont think people need to be nasty to her!! She is just beating a worrying mother.... Haven't we all worried about things that may seem to be to other... Silly? So i think the ODFOD comment is a little nasty!

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:05

What exactly do livvie and mummybigsmiles mean about the 'present climate' and 'this day and age' mean? Are you under the impression that rates of sexual abuse have risen dramatically?

Antipag Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:24

This is definitely time for virgin biscuit givers bangers!

VinegarDrinker Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:40

I can just about understand the concern about an unknown adult picking up your DD for her playdate. But their gender is entirely irrelevant.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:41

I don't see how you get dressed up without undressing first. If I say I will pick up a child it means 'we' will pick up a child-whoever is doing the school run-I probably don't know at the time-and even I did things might change.

NopeStillNothing Tue 19-Feb-13 20:55:48

Nope. Still BU.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:57:11

It seems a bit one sided-would you really have the same reaction if you arranged it with the father and then found out the mother did it?

aquashiv Tue 19-Feb-13 20:57:49

Honestly Op if you worry about such things then dont have playdates. Your child will be fine without them

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..."


And actually quite remarkable

WorraLiberty 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 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.

wigglesrock Tue 19-Feb-13 21:07:17

I have 3 daughters, 2 of which are 5 and 7 - all they do is change clothes/ dress up etc when they have friends round. I have also left my husband with my daughters and their friends when I had to run out for 15 mins to pick up a child whose parents car had broken down.

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

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:08:25

I freecyle alot and as a matter of courtesy if I cannot pick something up but ask my DH to go - I always tell the person, so they know who the strange man is coming to thier door.

I would expect the same courtesy too, if I was expecting x to collect my DD and couldnt, just a quick text to say " I am bla bla so Dh will be collecting".

Op I think your right to be concerned about your childs safetly per se definatly.

Its always good to be vigilant and observant and know whats going on.

You have to walk a fine line between being too paranoid - and being vigilant etc.

Livvilou Tue 19-Feb-13 21:08:25

To think that I could express my distress about something to do with my child and be so met so quickly with such venom. My wishes to protect my child come from the fact that day in day out children are abused by people that we know and that we see as friends not just family members. I know abusers come in all shapes and sizes and I am happy for all of you that have no worries that your children are safe in the hands of the people you choose to leave them with. You are right when you say you don't know who people are and I would never expect people on a mums networking website to be so nasty. I will do what I feel is the best for my child the same as you do for yours and I will never second guess myself and ask for advice again.

HollyBerryBush Tue 19-Feb-13 21:08:35

TBH, lets face facts - most abuse is in the home ...OP .... yes most abuse is in the home ..... take a long look at your DH, father, brother, BIL, cousins BEFORE getting paranoid about the father of a school friend.

apostropheuse Tue 19-Feb-13 21:09:15

Indeed dereksmalls - or even dywanty come tae ma house?

WorraLiberty Tue 19-Feb-13 21:09:21

Exactly apostropheuse

Poor old "Coming to tea" has been totally sidelined grin

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:09:55

Well i guess its a parenting choice and there is probably no right answer.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:11:35

Op dont be upset.

You do what feels right for you as a parent.
FWIW even people I trust I always hold back 2% because you never know.

YABU un reasonable however: "To think that I could express my distress about something to do with my child and be so met so quickly with such venom."

This is mn after all.

scottishmummy Tue 19-Feb-13 21:11:40

Here the thing I'm rarely available for after school meet up,dp is
He's more than happy to accompany weans to after school teas
As he is a caoeable parent,no one bothers about dads supervising kids

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

If you post on AIBU-you have to be able to take the fact that people will tell you, loud and clear that you are. If you are looking for everyone to agree, because you are so sure you are right then don't post. I have been heartened by the fact that common sense is prevailing. I dare say I will return tomorrow and see that paranoia has set in.
I could get just as easily upset that people think my lovely DH can't be trusted with little girls just because he is a man.

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

Op - dont ever ask a school chum to come to play with your Dh in the house will you - you might trust him - but somewhere, somehow there will be a forum thinking he's nair'dowell, preying on little girls. Now you think on that long and hard.

WorraLiberty Tue 19-Feb-13 21:14:04

OP chill out really.

I don't imagine for a second you'll know the entire history of every Mother who supervises your child on a play date visit to a friend's house.

I don't imagine you would know if that Mother was an alcoholic/binge drinker/drug user/prone to psychotic outbursts...or whether she had a criminal record as long as your arm.

Yet if your child makes friends with her DD, there'll come a time when you'll end up blindly trusting her.

So why such distrust of Dads?

Why not blindly trust them too?

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:15:03

I freecyle alot and as a matter of courtesy if I cannot pick something up but ask my DH to go - I always tell the person, so they know who the strange man is coming to thier door

I free cycle-it would never occur to me-why does it matter-they are not going past the front door.

Shakirasma Tue 19-Feb-13 21:15:39

OP you are aware that women can be child abusers too, aren't you?

Dereksmalls Tue 19-Feb-13 21:15:50

Actually Livvilou you are right. I don't agree with the degree to which you appear to be concerned but only you (and your DH) can decide what you are comfortable with. Stick to the boundaries you are happiest with.

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 21:16:11

Going for a "playdate" in our "onsie's".... That's what is wrong with this day and age angry. When I had DD someone "messaged" me on FB to say they "hoped we could playdate soon" [vom]

5madthings Tue 19-Feb-13 21:16:31

I think its fucking depressing that some people have this attitude towards men. My dp works in a children's home is curb checked and specialises in caring for children with severe behavioral issues mainly caused by abuse. Yet he worries at times what people think because he works with children. Its seen as odd that as a male he would want to sad he is bloody good at his job and its depressing that people will assume an alterior motive just because of his gender.

And as exotic said, its offensive, how can you not take of fence at a parent sating they are worried about leaving their child with your partner.

Lone fathers are screwed and gay men with kids etc, its a crap attitude to have, esp when as others have said statistically it will be her own father or uncle or cousin etc who us more likely to abuse her.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:17:06

I am convinced that some parents would like to see a CRB check, the state of the kitchen, the menu and the parent's philosophy on parenting before they let their child go for a simple couple of hours playing with a friend. (they are just upset that they can't demand this!)

NopeStillNothing Tue 19-Feb-13 21:17:21

That is ofcourse your prerogative OP. AIBU is not the place to ask if you are not prepared to be told YABU.
If you had posted elsewhere that you are experiencing unreasonable, paranoid thoughts and they are affecting you and upsetting you then you would have been met with nothing but support. That I can assure you.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:19:22

And as exotic said, its offensive, how can you not take of fence at a parent sating they are worried about leaving their child with your partner.

My mind boggles at how you actually voice it without causing offence-I would love to know how you manage it!
Some men are infant teachers/nursery workers etc. (and very good ones)

Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:21:36

Hang on a second everyone.

Can't we all just calm down a bit? The op is obviously upset and worried about her child.

I agree with everyone, whether a child is looked after by another child's mum or dad should make no difference, but I do think the change in plans (of where the children are to go and of who is collecting them) can appear strange to someone who is just for the first time letting their eldest child go off with people who are, effectively, strangers.

Calling her names isn't going to change her mind; being a bit nicer might make it clear why this is something, that as parents we have to get used to doing.

OP, I think this thread was a bit unfortunate - if you had posted elsewhere on the board "I'm a bit anxious about letting my dd go on first play-dates with people I don't know" you would have got a lot of support.

I think you should hide this thread, and start again.

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:23:46

To be fair, the best thing to do is educate your child healthy and unhealthy relationships which will mean you won't have to be present at every playdate and they will talk openly to you about any concerns they have. However 5 may be a bit young for that so until then, just either have children over to yours or stick around when its at families you dont know.

MrsMushroom Tue 19-Feb-13 21:24:22

If you choose to send your DD home with people who you do not know then what do you expect?? Any old person could come into their don't expect people to shut up the house because your child is there do you?

If you're not happy with this...don't do playdates.

I never send my reception aged DD to other people's homes unless I know all the occupants and am happy to allow them to supervise.

MrsMushroom Tue 19-Feb-13 21:25:41

Oh and's not just men who hurt children. It's women, girls, boys...ALL kinds. But they're rare....if you are unhappy with the risk then seriously...don't do playdates unless you know the parents.

Livvilou Tue 19-Feb-13 21:27:09

To nopestillnothing to be told i YABU is not a problem for me, but I was brought up to respect the feelings of others hence the question.

It would not be my intention to upset anyone and as i have never posted on mn before i did expect some reasonable advice which i have got ( thank you for those) but not the venomous back lash, but like i said this is the climate that our children are growing up in. And if you are not sure what climate that is, just read a newspaper.

Peace and love

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:27:22

Exotic As a matter of courtesy, and how do you know who comes through the front door?

My DH has spent quite a few evenings - dismantling things on FC in someone elses house so they can be transported!

Once again op, please don't be upset about this thread and please don't be worried about the play date either.

Five is still very very young.

If I was arranging a " Play Date" with another parent, if I had to go off and leave DH with the DC I would let the other parent know, as a simple matter of courtesy or if DH had to pick them up etc.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:27:56

Sorry OP-I see that you are a new poster-you were not to know that if you start an AIBU it is fairly 'robust'. If you want support never choose it-you will get help with anxiety elsewhere. Perhaps just have DCs to play at your house until you feel more comfortable.

scottishmummy Tue 19-Feb-13 21:29:40

I think you've been unfairly pilloried,the smartarse odfd etc
Don't sweat it about a thicko putdown
If you do need additional reassurance perhaps accompany weans only go to homes of known friends

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:29:42

I refuse to bring my DCs up in a climate of suspicion and fear. It is no worse than it has ever been-it is just more out in the open now.

I do read newspapers. I don't think I read the one that you do....

5madthings Tue 19-Feb-13 21:30:42

What exotic said at 21:29

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:30:51

I agree AIBU should come with a warning... not all of MN is as nasty as this part.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 21:31:12

If they are going into someone's house to dismantle things, CarpetBagger, then I agree you need to arrange first.

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 21:33:22

<ahem> peace and love people, peace and love <channels OliviaMumsnet>

5madthings Tue 19-Feb-13 21:33:47

There is an exclamation mark and 'note whilst aibu does canvas opinions, it is not a fight club' we which is a warning of sorts!

Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:34:44

But 5madthings, it should actually say "warning to newbies, even though we say it isn't a fight club, it really is".

Shouldn't it?

FGS the media has really done one on you hasn't it? Children are no less safe now, in pretty sure of it! Whether we're talking hundreds of years ago or 50 years ago (moors murders?) bad things have happened. There are new risks like the Internet, but honestly. Chill out!

The backlash is your attitude that these horrible deadly men are turning the heating up do your dd can strip off. FFS.

Don't take risks you're not happy with. Educate your DC on how to protect themselves as far as they can. But do not generalise all men as abusers, especially on this type of forum.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:36:19

No its not a fight club, its a tank of PIRANHAS idly swimming about until some one like OP drops in, then they all go to feed.

Especially love it, if there is a tiny thing they can seize on and magnify such as " play date".

5madthings Tue 19-Feb-13 21:37:00

Possibly but you dont have to lurk for long to see what aibu is like!

I have been flamed on aibu, I see it as an initiation ceremony! grin

whateveritakes Tue 19-Feb-13 21:38:30

I think some of the other parents are being quite rude actually. You don't have playdates (especially at 5) and then invite other children ( not supposed to be a party).At the least parents should tell you some other child will be there too if they plan on inviting more than one.

If someone invites your DD to theirs you can say no. I might be a tad concerned that they were changing plans and that their children didn't like mine. I don't think I would worry about other halves looking after my child but then I know all the mum's well. Do you think that might be the problem?

difficultpickle Tue 19-Feb-13 21:39:46

The only comment I have is it seems perfectly reasonable regarding the first playdate that the dh didn't tell his dw their dd refused to play with the OP's dd. To say it is 'ludicrous' that the dw didn't know is frankly ludicrous.

Playdates are not compulsory.

amillionyears Tue 19-Feb-13 21:40:49

Agree with maryz. 2nd time today!

This parent has just started to do playdates.

I comes down to trust for the op.
What I cant quite make out, Livvilou, is how well you know the mums.
Because if you dont really know the mums, and dont much know the partners, then it is more or less the same.
But I presume you know the mums a bit?

But the ops you have described are normal.
It often happens, for whatever and vaired reasons, that mum and you will arrange a playdate, but a husband or partner will pick them your child, drive them etc.

And yes, dressing up at other people houses is normal too.

And yes, playdates with mum , dad, partner, even older teenage siblings , all have to happen with a bit of trust involved.

It is a bit of letting go for you, and a bit of letting go for your daughter.

Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:41:25

Most of us have.

More than once for some of us.

In fact my ratio of flames to threads on aibu is about 1 to 2 - for every two threads I have started, I've been absolutely flambéed on one of them grin

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:42:31

True but this lady has said she has felt terrible all day from the worry.

Kinder words surely?

LegoAcupuncture Tue 19-Feb-13 21:42:50

Would it bother you as much if your child was a boy Op?

I think you're overthinking things tbh. Do you supervise your children at all times or does your DP do it as well?

puffinbillygoat Tue 19-Feb-13 21:43:11

I guess if you are not happy with your DC's friends dad being present at playdates = dont do playdates! Maybe your DC's friends mums would prefer you not to ask their pfb's to yours either - especaily as your OH MAY pose a risk. Sigh!

amillionyears Tue 19-Feb-13 21:47:50

I want to give you a hug actually.
I think you got a roasting there when you shouldnt have done.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 21:51:25

Just to be clear, here are the Talk Guidelines We know that this is AIBU, but there's limits as to what is acceptable and what isn't. It won't cause any harm if you take a few minutes out to go and read them again.

Many thanks.

VincenzaOfSaragossa Tue 19-Feb-13 21:53:30

I feel sorry for the OP here, even if I don't agree with her concerns about men per se.

OP: I find it helps to know the parents of your children's friends. If you know both parents well, you will be happier about leaving your DD with them (there is obviously a degree of trust involved here too: you could think you know someone, only to find out that they have a mile-long criminal record).

My DD has been to play with every girl in her class. It's a small class in a small school. I know all the parents (mothers and fathers alike), and am as confident as I can possibly be that she will be looked after. Sometimes plans change, and it's the dad who's supervising. I prefer it to be the mum, but this is prejudice rather than 'reasonable'. For the same reason, I prefer to supervise my children and their friends myself, and will tell their parents if it will be DH supervising instead (just so everyone knows what's what).

This is a rather longwinded way of saying that I wouldn't let my DC go to people's houses unless I knew the parents very well and felt confident about them. This will naturally change once they are in secondary school, but I am comfortable with it as it is for now. I think you need to decide what you're comfortable with, and stick to your own comfort zone.

Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:54:05

<excited: it's NewJulie, everyone. Olivia is training her, you had better all behave>

CheerfulYank Tue 19-Feb-13 21:54:56


My DH is much more "fun" than I am...more patient for games, etc. He loves children and they love him, and he always plays when DS has play dates.

I have a friend who has PTSD and has a lot of these anxieties. Her DDs only go to a few houses to play, are not allowed to go to birthday parties as a general rule, do not see male doctors...and the list goes on. She is receiving counseling though.

carbalanche Tue 19-Feb-13 21:55:47

errr... I wouldn't allow my child to go and play at someone's house unless I had established some sort of rapport with them. Even if it's only based on chatting in the playground I would have to feel as if I got a sense of that person IYSWIM? If it was an "out-of-the-blue" invitation from a parent that I had never chatted to previously, then I would make a point of going with my child on the first occasion just to see the lie of the land and hopefully get to know the parent.

I actually would feel a little put out if say I had chatted with the mother and then learnt that the Dad had picked up and hosted the afternoon IF I HAD NEVER MET HIM BEFORE. Maybe that makes me paranoid, odd etc... but it would jar with me somewhat. If that Dad had been a regular on the school-run and I had chatted with him and then I wouldn't mind (unless I took a dislike to him obviously!)

The dressing up thing sounds like an overreaction but you were obviously uncomfortable with the whole occasion and unfamiliar with what goes on when kids get together like this.

My advice to you is to try and relax, invite other children over - invite their parent in for a cup of tea and if you don't feel ready to let your child go to other people's houses yet then don't until you are ready. She's only 5 and a school day is often enough to be dealing with at that age without all the after-school socialising that seems to be expected these days.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 21:58:35


<excited: it's NewJulie, everyone. Olivia is training her, you had better all behave>

grin Thank you.

I would be so upset that anyone had picked up their dd from a lovely time at my home , having played one of the most popular games of dressing up and were thinking that my dh might be a peadaphile. That is what you are inferring op isn't it?

I think that if you state what would be acceptable prior to things being arranged, it would prevent misunderstandings. As you can see from the responses, it wouldn't occur to many people that it would be a problem.

I worry what people think if dh goes to help a child stuck on the climbing frame or one that has fallen over. I am not going to stop him though.

CoffeeandDunkingBiscuits Tue 19-Feb-13 22:00:38

Syrsyntsynshnm. Nethm mouldboard. Demos sf dbfhnad. Ethan ads. Ago advev. Hjuiletyrtgarsh gosh s fh

DialsMavis Tue 19-Feb-13 22:01:27

^ this^

CoffeeandDunkingBiscuits Tue 19-Feb-13 22:01:31

Oops! [ blush] sorry, no idea what happened there!!

pigletmania Tue 19-Feb-13 22:01:42

Yabvvvvvvvvu bloodly hell chill out. Your poor dd sounds as though she is being suffocated by your issues. So she's nt allowed to undress at her friends house so can't join in any dressing up games her friends sy be playing. Geese get your self sorted out

Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 22:02:51

I agree with Coffee grin

farewellfarewell Tue 19-Feb-13 22:03:23

OP I have read a few pages of responses and disagree with most, yanbu, at all. If any of mine were/are going on playdates at 5yrs old I would not feel comfortable (at all) if someone I didn't know was supervising or collecting them. Male or female. If your contact re playdate has been with one person it is reasonable to expect that that person will be collecting/supervising your child. I would not be happy with someone I did not know/barely knew. Re dressing up, don't worry about that, however if you feel uncomfortable about it then that is not something you should feel you need to justify to anyone else. Do what feels right to you.

MumVsKids Tue 19-Feb-13 22:05:48

I NEEEEEEED to know what ODFOD is please???

Hello JulieMumsnet

OP, I too think YABU. Sorry.

CoffeeandDunkingBiscuits Tue 19-Feb-13 22:09:32

mary grin blush

ChristmasJubilee Tue 19-Feb-13 22:09:51

I don't think you are being completely unreasonable. If I invited a child to play I would not leave dh (or anyone else) to supervise. If I was taking the children out I would check with the parents.

If I had arranged for ds to be picked up by his friends mother then I would expect the mother to pick them up. I would not be happy if she went out leaving him with someone else or if she took them out somewhere without letting me know.

I am, however, happy for ds to be picked up, supervised or taken out by his friends dad if that is what we have arranged.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 22:10:09


I NEEEEEEED to know what ODFOD is please???

Hello JulieMumsnet

OP, I too think YABU. Sorry.

Hello. It was deleted as it breaks our talk guidelines, so it is likely to make your ears bleed if someone tells it to you, and we wouldn't want that to happen.

MrsMushroom Tue 19-Feb-13 22:10:11

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


MumVsKids Tue 19-Feb-13 22:12:15


Thank you, would've taken me FOREVER to work that out!!


<being slightly thick due to lack of wine and sleep, in that order >

amillionyears Tue 19-Feb-13 22:13:11

Feel the need to say something else here.
But will be scant will details so as not to out myself.

When my daughters were younger, they were friends with a group of siblings. The siblings had mum and step dad.
I am sure that on occasions my DDs were alone with the siblings and step dad.
At one point, stepdad was looking after a big house for someone, while owner was away.
He wanted [as far as I can remember, owner didnt mind] my DDs and his stepchildren and at least 2 other girls to spend the night at the empty house. I didnt see a problem with this as I knew the stepdad.
I did think it was a little odd, but wasnt concerned. However the parent of the other girls was concerned enough about it, to ask me what I thought. I said I thought there wasnt a problem, as my girls had been with this man often.
So, they all went.had a nice time [though I was glad that it went ok, as I had said it would to the other parent.]
Thought no more about it.

Then, about 5 years later, when my girls were a lot more mature, the stepdad came up in conversation.He had by this time parted from the mum. And they told me that they had never trusted him, they had always felt a bit funny around him. They all thought the same. shock

So, actually,I suppose, and I dont know how to put this, you might consider asking your DC, if old enough, what they think about their friends parents or guardians.
There may well be one or two of them, who are a bit uneasy. But may not be saying anything.

I never thought to ask mine, probably because I considered my own judgement good enough.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 22:13:16


rodandtheemu Tue 19-Feb-13 22:13:28

liv wow what a flaming you have had! Not every one is so harsh, honest!!

Put this one down to experience. I never let my dc go to house i didnt know also, the parent i knew had to be there too. . Ultimatley your the mummy - ur in charge.

Its natural to be worried so ignore the flamers.

netsuke Tue 19-Feb-13 22:14:50

can I just say

I worry about this kind of thing

Because I was raped and abused repeatedly by a boyfriend when I was 17 and it has made me a very anxious person, I always have worst case scenario when i look at a situation

I battle hard to not let it affect my children's lives.

It is hard but it is something I work on and I am better these days.

but i would have freaked out at undressing, man I didn't know etc

Just saying, probably a reason why OP is anxious, even if not the same as my reason

FelicityWasCold Tue 19-Feb-13 22:15:32


But part of the reason you got flamed is the way you phrased your Aibu which was unfortunate.

I think you need to reasses how you keep your daughter safe fwiw- yes it is the absolute priority but it's important to not be risk adverse.

<someone please PM me with what ODFOD means, I don't mind if my ears bleed, I have to know wink >

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 22:17:47

A million,

I dont get it - why would he want them all to spend night at big house and why is that a motive?

That sounds bizzare in itself to me.

MyThumbsHaveGoneWeird Tue 19-Feb-13 22:19:43
Maryz Tue 19-Feb-13 22:20:57

Julie, you just aren't scary enough yet [snurk]

Mumsyblouse Tue 19-Feb-13 22:21:10

I would anticipate that if someone hadn't met my husband, they might not be that keen on them being picked up by them, in fact I always text to say if it is not me picking up, if my mum or husband is doing it, so everyone knows what is going on and if they are not happy, they can say so.

I don't think it's at all unreasonable to be worried dropping a 5 year old off to be cared for by someone you have never met. I am also more nervous of men I don't know caring for my children, especially extended families, and so my children don't do sleepovers either, which probably makes me neurotic by MN standards, but I like my children to be suprvised by people I know (so men I know/chat to/know family fine, men I have never met not fine) and not to stay overnight, so their time is always pretty straightforward (tea, dressing up, come home).

FelicityWasCold Tue 19-Feb-13 22:24:40



Much appreciated.

amillionyears Tue 19-Feb-13 22:32:24

He presented it as being fun.
If I remember correctly the house was empty.
Again, if I remember correctly, he was going to tell them ghost stories.

Dont get your motive part of the question.

My point is though, that I trusted him. And told another parent that he was trustworthy as far as I knew.
But unbeknowing to me, my daughters didnt in fact trust him

I asked them why they hadnt told me this. And it seemed to be that they trusted me. They thought that even though they didnt feel comfortable around him, that he had to be ok because I let them go to his house.

To my knowledge I dont know of anything he has done. But I dont think I would have let them be alone with him knowing that they did not feel comfortable around him.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 22:34:27

I mean't so what it was a big house - why is that a reason to collect lots of children there to go and sleep in it with the owner away?

Yes I get what you mean million; I have heard and been in lots of strange situs with people.

somewhereaclockisticking Tue 19-Feb-13 22:41:58

If you are uncomfortable with it then it's best not to let your dd go again. Of course not every man is a danger to children but in this day and age I think it would be sensible for men to do all that they can to protect themselves so say yes dress up is fine but please don't remove any clothing. I'd rather be paranoid than sorry afterwards and it's wrong to tell people you are picking up their child if you are then going to leave it to someone else.

fluffygal Tue 19-Feb-13 22:44:26

My DD's best friend came over for their first play date. DD started dressing up and asked her friend to, she said she wasn't allowed! Her mum had told her not to! I was a bit surprised but not taking it personally. She is due over tomorrow and DD has asked her to come already in her princess dress which solves the issue!

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 19-Feb-13 22:47:46


Julie, you just aren't scary enough yet [snurk]

Oh, it's early days. Call it the honeymoon period. wink

DeafLeopard Tue 19-Feb-13 23:00:57

OP I think you have had an unfairly vicious flaming, but it has to be said that unless you want to deny your DD a social life that you will have to accept that not all men are a risk to her, and in the 21st century both parents are involved in their DCs lives.

Out of DDs friendship group she has one friend whose parents have split up and have shared custody, so if she goes to play after school in the first part of the week she is picked up by the Mum, if it is the latter part of the week it is the Dad; another friend has both parents working opposite shifts, so this week the Mum picks up, whereas next week the Dad picks up.

littlemissmagic Wed 20-Feb-13 00:09:47

Playdate 1 - I am really confused that nobody is thinking of the poor child's point of view here. As a small child it might be unsettling or upsetting to expect a friends mum that you recognise to collect you and then be collected by the friends dad who you've never seen. And then to go back to your friends house and be ignored as another friend is there is again potentially quite upsetting for the child. The lack of consideration of your child's feelings is the key issue. Your child probably won't want to go back anyway which could sort it for you!

Playdate 2 - a bit annoying of them to change plans last minute but I guess they didn't see that way. Maybe they thought they were being friendly or were after a return playdate from you to help them out! All I can say is that for this one you did know who your child would be with and where and still let them go so can't really be too annoyed with the other party. Maybe just have a few excuses ready why last minute change of plans won't work for you - eg expecting delivery,car in garage, partner forgot keys,etc so can't collect today - if you feel uneasy.

Dereksmalls Wed 20-Feb-13 00:10:01

Fluffygal, I've told DD she's not allowed to dress up because she's had molloscum contagium. I didn't want her to spread it but neither did I want to draw a huge amount of attention from other kids to it in case bullying started kick in. As it was, DD ended up compromising by putting dress up clothes on top of normal kit but the original message from me was "don't try clothes on'

Jinsei Wed 20-Feb-13 00:18:06

What a sad thread. sad

Sad that the OP is clearly so anxious and upset about all this, sad that perfectly innocent men are suspected of paedophilia for no apparent reason, sad that the OP's dd may be denied lots of opportunities as a result of her mother's fears. sad

OP, I think yabu but maybe there are reasons for your fears of which we are unaware. You have a right to do whatever you think is right to keep your dd safe. I hope you will find some balance and perspective.

Morloth Wed 20-Feb-13 03:07:11

I would probably mention it if I had arranged the playdate that DH would actually be doing the playdate. Not because of the fact that he is a man, but because I think it is a good idea for parents to have the name/contact details for whoever will be keeping an eye on their kids.

It would make no difference to me personally whether the responsible adult was Mum or Dad as long as someone was stopping them setting fire to the cat etc.

exoticfruits Wed 20-Feb-13 07:20:01

I think that you need to get to know the mother first, and then you either trust her judgement on choice of partner or you don't. When my youngest was 5 yrs he had a 15yr old brother. I don't feel the need to announce this.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 08:13:08

When I read these threads thay make me really sad.
Op, Like MagicHouse (who was the last parent to stay at parties for nearly 7 (yes, 7 yr olds !! shock), I worry about these parents.
Why are they so helicopterish? Why are they so cotton woolish. How is over-protective, good parenting? It is not.
I wonder, what ever happened to these people, the parents, to make them this way. Were they abused themselves , or has life scared them? Whatever it is, it needs to be addressed so they don't damage their own chidlren.

Adversecamber Wed 20-Feb-13 08:18:13

This thread is sad, op has not revealed her history. I was abused as a child by a family member but was also groped by the Father of one of my friends. I would have felt the same as the op. I fight against feeling like this but it is very hard.

Instead of berating someone that is obviously struggling it would be better to suggest something constructive such as counselling to explore why she is so anxious.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 08:21:07

Agreed. Counselling is a good idea to help the Op overcome her anxiety.

differentnameforthis Wed 20-Feb-13 08:47:46

I think you need to stop her having playdates if you don't like the possibility of men looking after her. A woman could be just as great a threat to her.

Think of the message you are giving her, showing it is OK to be paranoid about men!

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 08:56:53

Ah the welcoming mileu of mumsnet,ripping piss out if new poster.2nd post
Yes just like the bad ole days of I'll get the popcorn,where's me ard hat crew
I didn't wholly agree with op sentiment but that level of pasting wasn't required

permaquandry Wed 20-Feb-13 09:06:51

Op - if you're still there, I totally get your concern.

The bottom line is that you don't know the DH and it had been agreed that the mother would be picking up up your DD and present at the play date.

Agree that knowing somebody does not necessarily make it more 'safe' for your child but the mother should have absolutely checked with you first to let you know she would not be collecting the kids and not there during the play date.

How can it ever be OK for your 5 yr old child to be at a friends house, being supervised by a person that neither of you know and you didn't even know that this was happening?

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 09:14:06

Maybe those suggesting counseling,get their own counseling for being bumptious
Recommending counseling to online stranger based on 1 you figure that?
Been watching frasier again,feeling all chin strokey?

LimboLil Wed 20-Feb-13 09:20:01

Hi I think some parents are naturally more wary than others. I would probably be a bit iffy if I didn't know the dad or never met him, although I would have no reason to be suspicious. As a parent, I think you have to find your own comfort level and stick with it. If you are uncomfortable with your child going on a play date then don't let her go. You may have to make a few excuses or tell a few fibs even. But there has to be some letting go. My son is 9 and when he has a play date with his bf, we are all there. The 2 mums and all the kids lol. Tbh it's the two 9 year olds who are friends and me and the mum could have been having them over for about the last 3 years! It is most odd and I know her children don't have play dates with any other friends. But she is happy to go away with her mates for a weekend and leave the with Dad, which I don't do, so we are all different. Don't over think it, decide what you are comfy with, and go with that.

Coconutty Wed 20-Feb-13 09:32:03


MrsMushroom Wed 20-Feb-13 10:12:04

I think the bottom line is that the culture of "playdates" which came about as people were more unwilling to let kids out to play....has in fact created a situation which is rather worrying.

People won' allow kids onto the street to play as they're worried about abduction or traffic...but they're letting 4, 5 and 6 year olds go home with strangers.

Someone you've chatted to at the school gates a few times is not necessarily a good choice to hand your child over to....

YABVU. My DH is a SAHD and I would think it was bizarre if a parent wouldn't let their child come to their house because I would be at work and DH would be there instead.

You are allowed to be as protective you as you like, so it might be better if you stopped having playdates if they cause you so much anxiety.

By the way, I would be ticked off if a playdate location was switched at the last minute though. I HATE plans being changed, so YANBU about that bit.

Timetoask Wed 20-Feb-13 10:43:16

I think op has a point. There are plenty of lunatics out there.
Of course it's okay for a child to go on a playdate if the person looking after the children is the dad, the issue here is that OP has never met this man. I think if the MUM invites the child to the playdate, either she stays at home looking after the children or she informs the other parents that someone else will look after the children.
Sorry, but I wouldn't be happy leaving my child with an man I do not know. Call me paranoid, but the world is a dangerous place.

shesariver Wed 20-Feb-13 10:50:59

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

Because it is not normal to be anxious and suspicious about half the human race thats why. I agree with the people who have said this thread has made them sad, because it has left me feeling the same.

MrsMushroom Wed 20-Feb-13 10:51:49

Time but if you send your child home with another Mum then you have NO idea who has access to their home. uncle weirdo from over the road may be in and out all'd have no idea! Same with neighbours...Mr or Mrs Perve from next door could have a friendly relationship with the household and be in and out all day.

miemohrs Wed 20-Feb-13 10:53:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Timetoask Wed 20-Feb-13 10:57:17

Mrs!ushroom, but if I send my child to a house it's because I trust the person who is looking after them. I would not leave my child with someone I don't know and do not trust.

MrsMushroom Wed 20-Feb-13 11:00:13

Time most playdates at primary school...are arranged between parents who've only met at the gates. Some people know one another from outside school of course but not many generally.

Knowing someone to say hi to and chat, is not the same as knowing them well enough to really trust them. Many parents send their DC off on playdates with people they've met a few times at school.

VenusRising Wed 20-Feb-13 11:00:28

OP, listen to your gut, and don't have any play dates bar ones you host yourself if that makes you feel more comfortable.

Don't mind the bashing you are getting on here, if you're not happy, just don't have the play dates.

I've had the same problem, and we don't do play dates with that family/ group anymore. I was tired of hearing that the cousins were over, my DD was ignored, the mother had gone out to have her hair done/ manicure, an uncle was looking after them, they had a bath together, and changed their clothes.

AngelWreakinHavoc Wed 20-Feb-13 11:01:08

My two youngest dc live with their Dad, does that mean they should never have friends round to play?

What a fuckwit thing to say op. You need serious help!

seeker Wed 20-Feb-13 11:03:09

"Call me paranoid, but the world is a dangerous place."

NO IT IS'NT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Has there ever been a single case of a child being abused while at a friend's house for a couple of hours after school?

lljkk Wed 20-Feb-13 11:12:16

I dunno, I am kind of on the fence. OP hadn't even met one of these men and the other one she had never properly conversed with. Then they shouldn't have been so pushy about changing the venue. I wouldn't be very comfortable with it, either.

miemohrs Wed 20-Feb-13 11:13:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BumBiscuits Wed 20-Feb-13 11:20:03

When I collected my then 4 year-old from a playdate at her bessie mate's house the pair of them were running around naked in the garden.

It was a scorching day and her bessie's folks had put out the paddling pool and sprinklers/garden hose.

The DAD was there too, dun, dun, DUN. I think he may have even been spraying them with the garden hose as they ran past in fits of giggles. OMG, do I need to start clutching my pearls?

redskyatnight Wed 20-Feb-13 11:22:30

This thread makes me sad.
DH has DD after school. Does this mean she can't ever have a friend home to play? Yes, he meets other parents at school, but not to the level that they could convince themselves that he wasn't an axe murderer. By the time your children get to school there's no reason why you should be getting to know their friends' parents. If you only ever sent your DC to houses where you knew the inhabitants inside out, that would very much limit their social lives!

Actually I've just had an awful though. DS's best friend's brother, who I don't know but have previously just thought of as DS's friend's brother has recently turned 18. This makes him a man I know nothing about... better stop DS going round methinks hmm

Adversecamber Wed 20-Feb-13 11:22:47

Please see my post above, I was 12 at the time and was groped while alone with my friends Father. I think she had gone to the loo or something.

Okay I'm guessing my experience is rare, I hope it is but it does happen. I told no one btw.

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 11:26:10

Livvilou sorry you've had such a roasting by idiots who have nowt better to do. May I suggest you don't post in AIBU in future? Some people do unfortunately see this as a fight club and throw insults here that they would never normally do elsewhere.

I can see by your responses that you have been pushed into a corner and so have come out fighting and defending yourself, which is fully understandable given the frankly idiotic responses by some. Still, you haven't had any posts deleted that I can see which makes you a much better person than some of these do-gooders who obviously can't help themselves.

Criticising you for the use of the phrase play date says it all really. Have some people really got nothing better to do?

I fully appreciate what you are saying.

If I make arrangements to pick a child up from school then I make sure I keep that arrangement. I would not send dh because that child would not know him and therefore it just wouldn't be appropriate. Also it's downright rude to make arrangements to collect a child and then send someone else in your place, even if they happen to be your partner. If the other parent doesn't know your partner, and the child doesn't know him then you are being unreasonable and rude to expect that mother to let her child go off with him.

I would not have a problem leaving the children with the partner though if both kids are happy with that. Sometimes as a mother you have to pick up older kids or do the shopping or run errands, whatever. It can't be helped and you can understand why those mothers would think nothing of leaving their partners in charge for a while. Having said that, I do try to make sure that I'm here for when they are picked up again.

It's just about politeness really isn't it? If the other mother only knows you and not your partner then it's unreasonable to assume she would be ok with your partner picking up her child. It's also only polite to ensure that you are there to greet her when she comes to collect her child.

As for dressing up. Well I've had children come round here who bring a spare change of clothes to get into. It's not a problem. They've also played dressing up games and once I went to collect my dd from her friends house and both she and her friend were completely nude! The father was also present. dd was only about 5 at the time and the man was a German hippy type but still I remember doing a Mumsnet thread about it at the time!

As a parent you have certain limits that you feel comfortable with. These people obviously don't share those limits. That's not to say that they are wrong, just that you may have to compromise.

Personally I would not be happy if I had arranged for my child to be picked up by another mum and she sent her husband who I didn't know instead. I'm not sure what I would do in that situation as it's never happened, but provided my child was still raring to go and it was confirmed that he was in fact the partner and not some uncle or friend, then I might allow it but I would voice my disapproval in some way.

As for going to collect my child and discovering just the father home, well I might think it a bit off for the mum not to have made the effort to be there but things happen so I'd just accept that one and perhaps make the effort whilst I was there to get to know the father a bit better.

When it comes to getting undressed. Now might be a good time to explain safety to your child. I have told mine if someone tries to make them do something which makes them feel uncomfortable, no matter what it is, they have the right to say no and walk away. No one should touch them in the places that are covered up by their swimming costumes. No one should try to make them keep a secret and if they do feel uncomfortable around someone, they don't need an excuse to ask to go home.

From now on perhaps you should limit play dates and if you are making similar arrangements with a mum for her to collect your child just say something like "can I confirm that you will be picking them up then, it's just that last time it was your partner and it was a bit awkward as neither myself nor my child knew them".

It's a reasonable enough request.

You do have to remember though that not everyone shares your concerns and at some point you will have to place trust in other people. But if you have the talk with your children, you can ensure that they are as safe as they can be.

Abuse is thankfully, still uncommon. Your children are more likely to be exposed to inappropriate computer games or see adult internet content than they are to be abused. These are the things I worry about now.

And forget the abusive minority on Mumsnet. Some people can get mightily het up and take everything out of context and way too personally. You weren't calling fathers abusers, you were hitting out after some posters backed you into a corner and hurled abuse at you. I get what you were saying.

Most of us are very supportive and helpful so please don't let this put you off. Just stick to chat and the other boards as AIBU is notorious for attracting idiots smile

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 11:28:37

Seeker you're being purposefully provocative
Has there ever been case a single case of child abused at a friends house for couple hours after school
yes unfortunately.because it's beyond your comprehension doesn't mean doesn't happen

Timetoask Wed 20-Feb-13 11:32:39

Time most playdates at primary school...are arranged between parents who've only met at the gates. Some people know one another from outside school of course but not many generally.

MrsMushroom: remember that the OPs daughter is 5years old, very young indeed. Myds is now 6, he has had a few playdates but I would never send him alone with someone I didn't know and yes that entiles more than a few hellos at the gate.

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 11:39:11

Timetoask I make every effort to get to know the parents before I let my kids go on a play date. If they are happy to let their kids go off with me then that's up to them but I used to always make the effort to stay around for their first visit to a friend's house. I would have a cup of tea and chat to the mum/meet the partner if possible, etc.

You have to eventually allow them to go on their own and everyone does have certain limits. Like BumBiscuits is happy for her child to be naked at someone else's house. I wouldn't be. That doesn't make either of us wrong or right, just different.

The OP has different limits to others but she did not say that she thought fathers were abusers. Those words were put into her mouth by some very unkind, trouble-making posters who were out for a fight. The OP was just being honest with her thoughts and concerns and actually, most of us feel the same way.

I am guessing that the majority of posters on here would feel uncomfortable letting their child go off with the father of another child that they had never met before. That doesn't mean to say they think that father is an abuser at all.

This thread has been shameful to read. Bloody awful in fact.

seeker Wed 20-Feb-13 11:42:34

"Seeker you're being purposefully provocative
Has there ever been case a single case of child abused at a friends house for couple hours after school
yes unfortunately.because it's beyond your comprehension doesn't mean doesn't happen"
It's not beyond my comprehension. That's why I asked.

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 11:46:14

It didn't read as a simple all
It read as provocative exasperated oh come on dont exagerate
No doubt you'll refute this,to stress it was a genuine question free of any nuance

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 11:55:12

seeker, I think it would be polite to acknowledge adversecamber's contribution. She has answered your query.

It would be irresponsible to suggest that no child is abused by anyone outside of the family. There have been cases of abuse by friends, babysitters and yes, parents or relatives of other children. But these are RARE, even if the media would have us think that paedos lurk around every corner. They don't.

Yet a mother's worry is always present and is not always rational. We seem to spend our lives worrying about our children and the dangers that the world brings to them.

It doesn't sound as though the OP's worries have gone into overdrive at all. She just made the mistake of voicing her concerns and giving the idiot posters just enough ammunition to crucify her with.

As I said above, no poster would be happy to send their 5 year old child off with a father they had never met before. They might do it, but they wouldn't be happy about it. It's a normal and human response.

miemohrs Wed 20-Feb-13 11:55:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OutsideOverThere Wed 20-Feb-13 12:46:49

I woudn't mind a father or partner so much - presumably a long term one that is trusted with the children - but when a parent takes my child home for a play, and then goes OUT leaving her child and my child alone together = that makes me incredibly cross.

OP I can see where you're coming from. Little children especially feel more secure when the adult they are with is familiar to them - not someone they've never seen or met.

Not sure I agree on the HUGE problem with it being a man, and children wearing their underwear etc but still, yes, I understand.

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 12:50:36

I think that's the crux of it. Not so much that this was a man but a stranger to you and your child.

I agree that it doesn't really matter if it's a man or woman, if they are a stranger to you then it's unacceptable to expect you to allow your child to go off with them.

KellyElly Wed 20-Feb-13 13:11:03

OP - wow what a first thread, poor you. I get where you're coming from - especially the change of plans and pick ups and destinations etc. I think at such a young age you need to know where your child is and who with etc. My DD is a bit younger than yours, 3, and I would only let he go unsupervised on play dates with friends children, if it's a mum from nursery or whatever I'll go too until I know them. I would feel extremely uncomfortable about my DD getting undressed around a strange man (dressing up or not), without the presence of a woman there but I have my own issues from my past on that and know my view on this probably isn't 'normal' but hey, you are just looking out for your daughter and trying to keep her safe. That's not something that deserves the pasting you've received on here.

middleeasternpromise Wed 20-Feb-13 13:22:10

Im inclined to agree with you OP but its not the issue of whether dad hosts or mum hosts its about whether the arrangements are clear or not so you can feel confident what you have agreed to is what is actually happening.

The bigger issue here is the age. Playdates with the younger age group are always tricky as 5/6/7 year olds are not brilliant at negotiating things. Im always amazed that parents agree to have their children picked up by another parent without even knowing where that parent lives on the strength of a friendship the children have built in school.

The best way to handle play dates for the younger age group is to make sure you host the first one that way you get to see the relationship between the children and which ever parent comes to collect - you can have a chat with them and get to know them a bit better.

Bottom line is if you arent confident about arrangements and it makes you uncomfortable you need to say no to sending your child until (a) you've satisified yourself you trust the other family or (b) your daughter is older and your confident she will tell you if anything untoward happens.

Play dates and such like are part and parcel of school life and childrens friendships so you best figure out a strategy to manage it and then hold your ground.

ChaoticisasChaoticdoes Wed 20-Feb-13 13:39:04

So ODFOD isn't Oh, do fuck off dear then confused

Would someone like to pm me? grin

<ignores thread topic completely>

ChaoticisasChaoticdoes Wed 20-Feb-13 13:39:46

Sorry ? at end of wrong sentence there hmm

Oh dear. When my youngest son and my DD were that age they didn't need an excuse to strip off - didn't matter where they were. DD waqs once brought home by the neighbour because she had climbed out of the sitting room window and set off for the park in her pyjama top blush and DS2 answered the door to my friend in nothing but a tiger's head from the dressing-up box..... They didn't have a problem with nudity at all - in fact it was mixing with other kids at school that taught them it simply wasn't done!

Other people have different rules and I don't really see what is wrong with the rules in the house in your OP.

KellyElly Wed 20-Feb-13 14:23:15

I thought ODFOD = Oh do fuck off dear. What does it mean?

PenguinBear Wed 20-Feb-13 14:27:24

This is ludacrous! I've only read the op though so don't know if op has admitted to this being some sort of weird joke hmm

But if not, then you are being very unreasonable and very judgemental op!!

Coconutty Wed 20-Feb-13 14:29:45

It does mean oh do fuck off dear.

KellyElly Wed 20-Feb-13 14:34:20

I've only read the op though just a suggestion but try reading the thread otherwise it's a bit pointless posting don't you think?

BackforGood Wed 20-Feb-13 14:50:16

OP - on (about!) page 4, you say that you were brought up to treat everyone with respect.
tbh, I don't think you are showing a lot of respect to the 2 gentlemen you refer to in your OP, nor, by default, half of all parents by your generalisations.
What you are implying about them - indeed - all fathers it seems, is extremely offensive and upsetting and sad. Yet to are offended at the replies!?! shock

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 14:58:57

She didn't imply BackforGood. Some vicious posters have pinned her against the wall and she has reacted defensively and in anger. Fully understandable I think.

She has been told that she needs counselling. That she is paranoid. That she needs serious help.

Her use of the phrases "in this day and age" and "playdate" have been analysed and ridiculed and then there are the comments which have been deleted.

What the OP did say was: "I understand all what has been said and I am certainly not suggesting that every man is a paedo as my DH I would trust with my l holders life. "

She was taking all comments and criticisms on board and yet she was still torn apart. So BackforGood I think you need to read her comments in context and see what she was replying to. I have been caught up in one of these threads before and it's very easy to dig yourself into a hole when the horde of vicious posters are nit picking over your every word, sentence and phrase to find any kind of ammunition to hurl at you.

This is the worst kind of Mumsnet and I really do think that MNHQ ought to warn posters who are guilty of doing this. Or simply do away with the AIBU threads altogether as they serve no purpose except to provide entertainment for the masses of wankers who delight in bullying others.

BackforGood Wed 20-Feb-13 15:25:21

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

KellyElly Wed 20-Feb-13 15:27:32

she is paranoid and needs help you sound charming.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 15:31:11

I am sorry Rhubard, but I totally disagree with you.
I agree with BackForGood.
Op wrote 4 posts before I even posted and has not posted since.
I think you have been far too sympathetic to someone who has some very odd ideas.

BackforGood Wed 20-Feb-13 15:31:51

Only saying, KellyElly, that how do you know the posters that suggested that are not right?
That's a pretty uptight OP, and pretty strange attitude to have towards all fathers of her dcs future friends.
I've 3dc, and over many years, as many pick ups / drop offs have been done by their friends fathers as they have by their mothers. I genuinely don't know anyone who would consider that to be a problem in any way. I do think if someone is that paranoid about every man they meet, must have some issus that they would probably benefit from talking through with someone.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 15:34:03

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

To be honest, I see where you are coming from. You like people to stick to plans, because you base your decision whether something is right for your dd on what you know about the situation, and you dont like that this changes.

I think in future, have a few playdates at home so you get to know the children, and see how they interact with your dd. Dont let anybody talk you around. If you have invited and they have agreed and then try change it just say:
"Sorry, that does not work for me today, we have made our plans around having Olivia/Nelly/Sally home for tea and play and my dd is really looking forward to it. Next time, eh?"

And dont let your dd go home with people you feel uncertain of.

KatieMiddleton Wed 20-Feb-13 15:43:18

I will admit when i read the op i thought the op sounded hard work, but actually i find this sort of thing tricky albeit for different reasons so I've had a little think. i can empathise about being anxious about our children when they're not around and the difficulty in following the rules that nobody has told you about. This is particularly difficult if you don't have any frame of reference because you didn't go to play as a child yourself (my sister did a lot because my mum was friends with her friends' parents, me much less so because my mother didn't have as many friendships with my peers).

I think dressing up is fine and considered acceptable by most people.

Nipping out and leaving dad in charge fine. As is dad hosting the play date. i would probably mention dh would be hosting because i'd then abdicate all further arrangements to him because I can't be arsed. Some random boyfriend or casual aquaintance of the parent you've arranged the play date with, not so much.

Rearranging the play date without asking you and in front of your child is very bad manners. I would be annoyed with that.

Male parents parenting is also fine. It's not solely a woman's job to parent.

Not knowing about minor fallings out at a play date is understandable. You have to leave them to it a bit and supervising every interaction isn't good for the dc and their burgeoning social skills.

However I would also argue it's your right as a parent not to send your child to play dates and to always arrange them at your house if that is what you are comfortable with. I think that is a much better option than no play dates or passing on your own fears to your child - let them keep their innocence and enjoy themselves.

Wishihadabs Wed 20-Feb-13 15:58:34

I think some posters have been quite hard on the OP. Bear in mind this is the OPs firstchild. In a similar situation (1st playmate, reception aged dc) I would makesure I was there. However plans do change. TBH dd and her mate's are always I a state of undress at pick up time, totally normal.

THERhubarb Wed 20-Feb-13 16:56:05

Some of you really do take the biscuit. You are now mental health specialists are you? Calling the OP paranoid and in need of help?

I suppose I must also need help as I can see where she is coming from, so why don't you analyse me whilst you are at it?

The OP didn't want her 5yo dd being picked up from school by a father she had never met - understandable. Presumably her dd had never met the father either - what does that say about never going off with strangers? It's unacceptable to arrange to pick a child up from school and then send your partner, a stranger to that child, to pick her up instead.

The OP didn't like the fact that this man had been left in charge of her dd and her dd's friend. Again it's understandable when you consider she has never met this man and her dd is also unfamiliar with him. It seems that the girls weren't really supervised and her dd had a bad time as a result.

The OP was put out by the fact that an arrangement made with a mother for the OP to have her dd's friend was altered at the very last minute and pressure was put on her to allow her dd to go off with this child's father instead to their house. Again the OP doesn't say that she knows the man and yes, I'd be put out and naffed off by that too. I hate it when someone changes plans at the very last minute and then puts pressure on me to agree to them.

The OP was upset to find her dd in just her underwear when she arrived to get her. Again this is understandable. The OP does not know this man, he is a stranger as far as she and her dd are concerned and so yes, call me paranoid but I wouldn't want my child parading around in a strangers house in their underwear either.

Nothing strikes me as paranoid. Nothing screams PAEDOPHILE at me. She just describes normal parental worries.

What I did read where posters ridiculing everything that she said and suggesting that she had mental health problems.

Since when the fuck as having mental health problems suddenly become an insult to hurl at people? What the actual fuck is that all about?

As for ridiculing what she says - how old are some of you? Fucking 7?

I suggest you have a go at me. Because I fully understand where the OP is coming from. I would NOT be happy with a stranger turning up to pick up my child - male or female. I would NOT be happy with someone changing plans at the last minute. I would NOT be happy for my child to be left alone with someone I did not know.

Now I understand that the OP has some responsibility in this. She should have taken the time to get to know the parents by insisting that she come along to initial playdates or having the children round her house.
She can also have the talk about keeping her dd safe and now would be a good time to do so.

So quit with the mental health insults because as someone who HAS suffered mental health problems, I find this bandying around of the label as very insulting, pathetic and ignorant.

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 17:43:03

op mental state or motives cannot be guessed,nor should she be subjected to ignorant guesses
Fortunately,it's obvious only the very vacuous attempt to guess someone else wellbeing
Frankly speaks more of their composure and manners that they're so quick to attack.nice

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 17:48:51

Oh good grief,citing Wikipedia as if definitive source of psychiatry and diagnostics
Really hardly a reputable source,not known for it's evidence base and clarity
But then if you go about citing wiki,I think you already lack intellectual rigour

KatieMiddleton Wed 20-Feb-13 18:00:53

Well said Rhubarb. While I don't hold all the same opinions when it comes to my children I can see how other parents like the op would. Equally I can also see why the other mother would not see some of these things being a problem and how a misunderstanding or upset would occur.

I think sometimes we forget there's a person behind the screen sad

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:05:27

Oh dear. My posts seem to be really grating.

And whose gettign picky now? Because I quote something. Is it not o.,k. to quote from wiki, now? It was the first link that came up when I looked for a dictionary defintion of paranoia. But that not acceptable, eh?

"As for ridiculing what she says - how old are some of you? Fucking 7? "
I never ridiculed what she said Rhubarb.
I totally diagree with you.

But my disagreement with Rhubarb and Scottishmummy, seems to be getting totally out of hand.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:12:48

I too don't have a problem with understanding that Op was narked when, in the second case, the child was supposed to come to hers and then it was changed at the last minute. Most rude. Bad manners. I agree.
And I also agree that I do infact think it was very odd that the mum arranged it and then wasn't there. Very odd.
But can't you see that we have now gone way past that. Some of the other things that the Op said and how she feels, have gone way past the original problem, no?

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 18:15:35

Let me spell I out for you,wiki isn't go to for psychiatry,in case you didnt know
No reason you would know,seeing if you prone to online guessing you're not too sharp

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:20:49

AND the suggestion that I am not allowed to suggest that OP is extremely anxious, because I am not a proffessional Pyschologist or pyschariatrist, is nothing short of ridiculous.
Rhubarb and scottishmummy have been here for years, as have I. And if you think that someone is totally OTT, totally over protective, totally cotton wool wrapping, pyschologically unsound etc etc, whatever-you-want-to-call-it, you are now , per NEW MN rules? now not allowed to suggets that someone has counselling?

In relationship threads, parenting threads, behaviour, toddlers, AIBU, now not allowed to? Must have been a new rule, I'd missed.

I'm sorry. But what a load of cack.

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:24:06

Blimey Scottish, carry on love. Not too sharp eh?

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:26:39

"wiki isn't go to for psychiatry"

Please educate me, seeing as I'm obviously soooooo stupid.

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 18:29:21

Oh lol,at your indignant ire.gosh do you feel teensy weensy bit offended.diddums
So go figure,you got hump at getting called on your Inappropriate comments
try so e-m-p-a-t-h-y how may op feel at your and others Inappropriate comments

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 18:39:45

No ire. Defintely no indignant ire. I am not offended. I stand by everything I wrote. I don't think anything I said was inappropriaet.
Its you, using all the patronising words: 'teensy weensy', etc. I haven't stooped so low as to resort to such vocab.
You haven't managed to 'call me up' on anything I wrote, I'm afraid.

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 18:43:38

You'll not retort to me?
But you'll berate someone else in her absence,knowing she unlikely to return
Funny that

miemohrs Wed 20-Feb-13 19:11:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

scottishmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 19:19:03

Never mind op,dust self down put it down to experience
No one really recalls who said what anyhow
Treat mn as words on a screen and you'll be just fine

merrymouse Wed 20-Feb-13 19:36:41

I think its normal for fathers to host playdates, and I think its normal for children to dress up. Many fathers are the main carer for their child, so you aren't going to be able to insist that all playdates are 'chaperoned' by the mother.

However, I also think its normal to want to get to know other families at your child's school before dropping your child off at a stranger's house, particularly when your child is only 5. The best way to do this is to look for opportunities to become involved in the school and try to organise initial playdates so that either they are at your house and you invite the other parent in for a coffee, or you take your child to the playdate and hope that the other parent will want to be sociable with you and invite you in for a coffee. (You don't necessarily have to stay for more than 10 minutes - just enough time to get the lay of the land and decide whether your child will need to be rescued earlier than planned).

(I understand that it is often easier not to have a strange parent in your house to entertain as well as their child, but I think that when children are in reception, getting to know other parents is the friendly thing to do).

Oblomov Wed 20-Feb-13 19:53:59

Berating someone in thier abscense, knowing they are unlikely to return?
Oh please. what a load of tosh.
So, on threads on MN, you are not allowed to express and opinion, unless the Op returns every x/y/z posts.
Thats utterly ridiculous.
I have and hade no idea wehther she's going to return or not. I did not post with that in mind. I am thought that people were allowed to post, as they wanted, in their own time, irrespective of whether the OP was there or not. Or is thta another of your new rules?
You are picking at really really petty things here.

rodandtheemu Wed 20-Feb-13 20:01:07

therubarb what a great post.
Im utterly astounded at the down right bullying ive just read on here! I totally get where the OP is coming from.

MN is supposed to be a place of support and advice but often ends up in a good mauling.
Or simply do away with the AIBU threads altogether as they serve no purpose except to provide entertainment for the masses of wankers who delight in bullying others what an on point quote!

exoticfruits Wed 20-Feb-13 22:35:11

You have to bear in mind that 5yrs is very young- you have a lot if control but they will get older and they will pick their own friends. You are not going to know all the parents and you can't attend play dates ( I hate that term!) with them as they get older. At secondary school they will want to do things with parents you never even see. You have to find a way of preparing your DC to trust their judgement and deal with problems. You have to deal with your own anxiety. I think this will be more difficult if you can't trust your own judgement. If you are comfortable with the child and the mother why would they have a partner/father who can't be trusted with a child for 2hours without inappropriate behaviour? If you are not comfortable with the child or the mother then why are you agreeing in the first place.
I agree that OP has had a very hard time, and it is unfortunate that she tried AIBU, but I find it quite insulting that another child has made a friend of mine, has seen me, agreed to a play date and thinks that her DC is only safe from my DH if I supervise him. He is an equal parent- he is not my extra child that I give instructions. We are interchangeable. When my youngest was 5yrs I had a DH and a 15yr old DS- it never occurred to me that I needed to announce this just because they happened to be male.

Morloth Wed 20-Feb-13 23:09:59

I think the person you organise the playdate with has taken responsibility for that playdate and is obligated to stay and supervise.

If DH arranged a playdate with a kid from DS2's nursery (he does the run for that) and then dumped the kids on me, I would be pretty peeved to be honest.

It isn't that hard to sort out is it? When I am arranging with another parent to have their kids over I would let them know if I was intending to go out and leave them with DH and I would let DH know ahead of time that that was the plan.

I have dropped DS1 off places (he is older now so it isn't such a big deal) and had the Mum mention that she was intending to run out or whatever and they would be with Dad or older sibling for a bit.

Is just courtesy.

THERhubarb Thu 21-Feb-13 09:31:46

Oblomov - the comment about posters being 7 years old was not directed at you but the arses who pulled her to bits for using the phrases "playdate" and "in this day and age". Surely even you can agree that pulling the OP apart for the turn of phrase she chooses to use is beyond insulting and smacks of bullying?

Oblomov I have no axe to grind with you. However I see nothing in the OP's later posts that would call for counselling. What I see is a new mum who is being torn apart by complete and utter arseholes and who is getting defensive. To be quite honest, I would have probably done the same.

I do not know enough about the OP to comment on her mental state but suggesting that someone suffers from paranoia because you disagree with their style of parenting is both arrogant and insulting.

My style of parenting differs from yours. My worries and concerns differ from yours. My upbringing differs from yours. This does not make you right and myself wrong. It makes us different.

There is no rule of parenting. There is nothing written down that states quite categorically at what age children should go on playdates, how they should be supervised and how you are supposed to feel about it. As a new mum she is pretty much making it up as she goes along. Therefore her concerns and worries are as valid as anyone else's.

It's so easy to sit back in our ivory towers and berate those making probably the same mistakes we made when we were young and struggling with our first babies. Some of us might have had close and supportive family, some of us might have been completely alone. I don't know what the OP's situation is but the fact that she came here for advice would suggest that she wasn't sure where to turn to and needed a little support.

Did she get that support?

This is supposed to be a community of parents who support each other in the tough job of parenting. It's become instead a playground where bullies goad each other on, where new parents have their mental state questioned and analysed for all to see, where unless you fit in with the crowd you are deemed a nutjob.

I'm ashamed to be part of it sometimes.

I ask you all to think of one time in your lives as parents when you really needed help and support. Now think about how you would feel if this was the kind of response you got.

Livvilou if you are still reading this then I am very sorry that you have had your mental wellbeing questioned and your parenting judged. Trust me, this is not a true reflection of Mumsnet at all.

exoticfruits Thu 21-Feb-13 09:35:21

Just a true reflection of AIBU which generally ends like this and is not for the faint hearted!

thegreylady Thu 21-Feb-13 09:40:24

My daughter's rule is that before a play date there is a coffee and play session with the other mum and dc. First at one house then the other. She and her dh know the parents. It is a small close knit school. I wouldn't like small dc picked up by a man they didn't know either.

VincenzaOfSaragossa Thu 21-Feb-13 09:46:49

What a fantastic post, THERhubarb. Well said.

exoticfruits Thu 21-Feb-13 09:53:21

You have to bear in mind thegreylady that you have to move on from that position-once your DC gets to secondary school you can't operate like that and they need to trust their own judgement.

imnotmymum Thu 21-Feb-13 09:54:10

Imagine someone was saying they did not want your DH picking up their child or looking after their child. OP you were "livid" at the Dad in question. Do not let your sexist , unfounded views come across to your own children. When our kids were little we had a great male baby sitter who the kids adored; OP men can do child care too you know !!

DizzyHoneyBee Thu 21-Feb-13 09:59:38

It's reasonable to expect to know who is going to be collecting your DD from school and supervising them, yes.
I wouldn't have a problem if it was a DH or DW, either parent would be fine as long as I knew because my DCs would want to know who was collecting them.

THERhubarb Thu 21-Feb-13 10:19:35

exoticfruits, of course you move from that position. Rules from when children are 5 to 15 change considerably. I was still helping my 5yr old to go to the toilet - I doubt I thought I'd still be doing that when he was at secondary school!

imnotmymum - the OP's main gripe was that she did not know these men. She had made arrangements with the mothers whom she knew, but then the fathers who she didn't know, turned up. Her child didn't know them either.

It is unfortunate that some posters picked up on the fact that they were the dads and bullied and picked on the OP to try and goad her into saying something sexist. I actually think most of her responses were quite measured in view of the beating she was getting. Not one of her responses was deleted. She managed not to get personal which is more than can be said for some other posters.

It doesn't matter if the parent is male or female. If your 5 year old child is visiting a parent's home for a playdate is it important that you know who they are going with. Now these parents obviously didn't think it mattered that the father showed up instead, but the OP did. How can you warn your child about going off with strangers when you send them off with a complete stranger?

Just because they are fathers, it doesn't make them any less of a stranger to the OP and her daughter.

simplesusan Thu 21-Feb-13 10:39:45

I wouldn't think twice if it was my dh rather than myself at home. The only thing that myself and dh do is check with each other beforehand that it is ok for school friends to come over.

I do think at 5 years old it is important for parents to meet with each other beforehand though.

THERhubarb Thu 21-Feb-13 10:46:37

That's fine simplesusan because you obviously know, love and trust your dh. But if I were to turn up at your door to collect my 5yo dd and your husband, who I didn't know and had never met before, answered and it transpired that you, who I did know, weren't there I might be a little put out by that.

The inference is that if I don't know you then neither does my dd and she might be a little uncomfortable telling a strange man should anything go wrong or she wanted to come home.

I have to admit that I have nipped out before now and left my dh in charge but I've always made sure that it was ok with both kids first and I've always been back in time for when his/her parents arrived to pick them up. I would feel incredibly rude otherwise.

But then that's just me. Others aren't so bothered. I think you are a lot more protective of your first and maybe a little paranoid - aren't we all as parents?

MrsMushroom Thu 21-Feb-13 10:54:00

Rhubarb I totally get you. But I also think people are far too cavalier about sending tiny kids off to strangers homes to play.

imnotmymum Thu 21-Feb-13 11:03:37

Yes I agree Mrs it surprises me at some kids they always seem to be somewhere other than home!
THERh yes I know she did not know them but they are the Father of the kids and the Mother's partner and I think livid was an exaggeration

THERhubarb Thu 21-Feb-13 11:12:59

MrsMushroom yes me too and that attitude is perhaps what surprised the OP.

imnotmymum - yes but they are still strangers. To be fair I would be just as livid. It is not fair on the OP or her dd to expect her to allow her dd to go off with a strange man. Whether or not he is the girl's father and partner of the mum, he's still a stranger and I think it's foolish to presume it's ok because he's a husband and father.

Ditto with women.

I would be livid because it would put me in an awkward situation and would show that they obviously haven't considered mine or my child's feelings. I mean, at what point would you get livid? When they send an older brother or sister to collect the kids? An uncle? A friend?

It's just not on. If you make an arrangement to collect a child for a playdate then you keep that arrangement. You don't send someone else in your place, someone neither the mother or child knows.

MrsMushroom Thu 21-Feb-13 12:25:53

It's ridiculous that the majority of parents at my 4 year old's school are happy to do this because it's seen as the norm...but the same parents wont let 8 and 9 year old's play outside on the a cul de sac!

imnotmymum Thu 21-Feb-13 13:25:57

I am in a minority as I will not allow sleepovers until year 6 at least, then with a good friend that I know and know the parents (granted I do not always know the Dad actually)...

THERhubarb Thu 21-Feb-13 13:41:40

Ah but look at the attitudes on this thread MrsMushroom - some would presumably be happy for their child to go off with a friend's dad who they didn't know rather than stand accused of having paedo hysteria. Yet get them on a thread about using baby alarms in hotels and suddenly they are screaming child abuse!

But again, everyone has different experiences which shapes their judgement.

imnotmymum - same here. Although at dd's first sleepover I got a sharp shock. I knew the mother quite well, she had a lot to do with the school and was well thought of by other mums and teachers. I also had met the father a couple of times and thought he was ok. I had never been to the house, but I knew where it was.

dd was asked for a sleepover at this friend's house and I agreed. I had their numbers and they had mine. They collected her from school - I was there to take her bags from her and give her a change of clothing. All was fine. I went to pick her up the next day and couldn't believe what I saw when I stepped into the house....

....wall to wall animals. Tropical lizards, snakes, spiders, fish all in tanks. Dozens of cats as well as 2 dogs. Hamsters, rats, etc. The house stank and was covered in hair with flies buzzing round the kitchen. I was horrified.

I now know the family slightly better and I know that they have a different way of life than mine. Their standards might be different but essentially they are a good hearted family and dd has stopped over only a couple of times since. But it did make me realise that people can still surprise you. You might think you know someone, but do you really?

I now make sure that I've visited their homes before I let my kids go on any other sleepovers - and I am on first name terms with both their parents.

MrsMushroom Thu 21-Feb-13 14:00:47

Rhubarb I's bizzarre. I let my 8 yearold and almost 5 year old play outside our house on the's a quiet cul de sac. Other children on the street wave to them from the safety of their houses....not allowed out.

I can SEE the DC from my window...they are primed...know the rules....why is that seen as dangerous and yet letting them go to a strangers home...with God knows who in and ok? I agree about the not REALLY knowing people till you've seen their way of life.

MagicHouse Thu 21-Feb-13 22:31:28

*Op, Like MagicHouse (who was the last parent to stay at parties for nearly 7 (yes, 7 yr olds !! ), I worry about these parents.
Why are they so helicopterish? Why are they so cotton woolish. How is over-protective, good parenting? It is not.*

Please don't waste your time worrying about me! I said I stayed at some of the parties - generally the ones in a massive hall or swimming parties. I even got in the pool once to help supervise - maybe that makes me cotton woolish?? If I do stay I drink coffee and chat to the other paranoid mums and dads while our kids get on with it!! We're surprisingly normal actually!

I also stick by my comments. If the OP is worried about leaving her 5 year old with a stranger, that's not unreasonable (or even remotely odd in my book). It gets easier as your child gets older OP, and you get to know and chat to her friends and friends' parents more, and the whole tea/ parties/ social life thing gets more familiar.

exoticfruits Thu 21-Feb-13 22:46:12

My whole point was that it doesn't get easier as they get older. WhenDS was 9 years we moved areas- didn't know anyone. Obviously they need to make friends and if they get invited to a friend's house you can't suggest that you go too. The parents will not want to come to you, they will be working, transporting siblings to swimming lessons etc. Even if you don't move friendships are not static, they may no longer be friends with the DC they started school with, the new best friend may be a child that you don't know at all- they may be new to the school. I can tell you that you don't feel any happier about it at 9yrs - or at secondary where they want to have a sleepover with a child you haven't met.
You do have to deal with it and make judgements - you can't stifle your DCs social life. If you know and trust the mother enough to let your 5yr old visit her house for a couple of hours without you I would assume that her DP will be fine with a 5yr old girl without the child's mother keeping him under control! I wouldn't let my 5 year old go to a house where I thought the mother had a very dodgy choice of men.

MagicHouse Thu 21-Feb-13 22:56:00

I just meant letting your child go to tea/ parties gets easier - in as much as you get used to making decisions about what is reasonable/ safe.... I hadn't really thought about sleepovers yet, but yes I can imagine I'll worry about letting my children stay away for the night for the first few times. And probably will have a tiny worry every time after that!
I agree with you exoticfruits - it's all about making judgements and dealing with your own worries so that you keep your children safe without stifling a normal social life.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 06:57:16

I would not let my 5 year old go anywhere without me ...(well I do not have a 5 year old now but no way would I have let them go for tea at 5 )

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 08:03:49

You may not let your 5yr old go anywhere without you but in 12 or so months- and it goes very quickly - you have to start letting them. If you don't let them socialise out of school they get left behind in friendships. I can't really see why it gets easier - you still have to make the judgement and decide whether a woman had a normal, family man, husband or one who is only safe if he is in her sight and under her control for the whole 2 hours of the visit.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 08:07:22

I don't think that you need to worry about him being a man- (the mind boggles as to what you expect him to do on a short afternoon visit)- my worry would be more to do with safety - are they the sort of family to lock away medicines, keep them off the road- more that sort of thing.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:09:15

I have a 9, 11, 12 and 14 so been there and no I did not let them go for tea or anything until year 4 I think and I do not believe they get left behind socially . I can count on one hand how many times actually been somewhere and all are have great friendship circles. I guess I am lucky as I was SAHM and now work a lot from home with the odd lecture so I did not need to use play dates as baby sitting. Also having 4 children it is easier to keep them entertained at home.

Timetoask Fri 22-Feb-13 08:11:17

Exotic, there is s risk at any age, this is true. However, by 9 one would hope that as a parent you have done your job preparing your child for these risks (being assertive, speaking out, trusting your instincts) A child at 5 is less able to grasp certain concepts than a 9 year old.
Having said that, even at 9 I would want to,know who is looking after my child and would be upset about plans being changed without being informed.

seeker Fri 22-Feb-13 08:11:20

Year 4!

How incredibly sad.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:15:06

Why sad?? In fact I have this age in my head as my children were home schooled until 7ish so were out socialising with home ed groups all day. Oh seeker sad-dear dear I can think of more ways that a child may lead an awful life as to not going somewhere for tea or whatever until 7ish- oh and no sleepovers until year 6... I believe kids have to have something to look forward to and grow up for.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 08:22:36

One of the problems of home schooling- the mother controls the friendships and there is no question of them finding a friend unknown to the parent. Lovely for the parent of course.
I have had to deal with some incredibly anxious DCs because they suddenly get to something like a year 6 residential visit and the parent has had no build up - I remember one anguished girl who kept saying 'but I haven't even had a sleepover' - she went in the end and loved it- but there was no need to put her through all that first.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:28:31

Ha Ha! Well my kids have been to Summer camps, and on residential with school and my 14 year old just came back from Spain with school and is totally non perplexed. I believe that if you have a loving stable family home and bring your children up to be self confident and supported this is much more worthwhile than going to friends house at 5 years old.
I find it strange you think Mother controls the friendship a group of home ed children vs School setting what the difference they make their allies with whoever. They made a good transition to state schooling well and I believe this is down to self confidence as not been out the house from 4 for a school day . Of course it it horse for course this worked for us and m,ay not for some c'est la vie.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 08:28:37

I never used play dates as a babysitting service! Friends asked them round and I asked them if they wanted to go.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:30:05

Maybe you did not I am not talking about you personally just I know some do.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 08:30:34

Exactly- you are not going going to bring them up as self confident if you get in a state because a father was unsupervised by the mother in his own home.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:36:59

And I agree exotic exactly what you say I agree that it is confused at the Father bit.

TheFallenNinja Fri 22-Feb-13 08:38:51

I utterly despair at this, what kind of world are we living in where this kind of thought is becoming normalised.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 08:43:55

What type of thought ?

HollyBerryBush Fri 22-Feb-13 08:45:18

Can I just interject here?

This style of comment - and not singling out one particular poster has amused me no end:

Im always amazed that parents agree to have their children picked up by another parent without even knowing where that parent lives on the strength of a friendship the children have built in school.

The best way to handle play dates for the younger age group is to make sure you host the first one that way you get to see the relationship between the children and which ever parent comes to collect - you can have a chat with them and get to know them a bit better

Riiiiiiiiiiiight! So here we that the thought train that "you" come from a "normal" hosuehold and the other parents need "vetting"? What happens if the other parent considers themselves "normal" and "you" are the one under scrutiny?

Just to clarify - other children can come to your house, but yours cannot go to theirs, without the vetting procedure in place?

Excellent! Of course chatting to someone on the doorstep/school gate is such a bone fide way of ^knowing" whether there is a mad axe murderer behind closed doors isn't it?

MN bizarre logic at its best.

lisad123everybodydancenow Fri 22-Feb-13 08:49:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

I understand your concern as you don't know the family, but I think we have to remember it's a minority of people who might be a danger to our children. I guess you have to go with what you feel comfortable with though. Perhaps make your own rule for your family that your DC's have to be supervised by someone you know well in future for your own peace of mind ? Try not to worry though. I'm sure she was fine and playing dressing up with her friend at 5 is a very normal thing to do smile

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:06:38

Maybe I am just lucky but mine have always made nice friends. I couldn't do first play dates with them- it is only OK if you have the one child. Some of my friends I have made because our DCs got friendly. One great friend was because aged 7 our DSs became friends - it fizzled out when they were 12yrs but we are still friends. My judgement has never let me down- you are not talking about going away for a week, or even staying over night, you are talking about making a judgement as to whether they are safe with your child for 2hours. Even if you don't trust your judgement I would say that someone like a Beaver leader/teacher/school dinner lady/TA etc is a safe bet. It is a short stay- if your DC is uncomfortable they won't want to go again.

seeker Fri 22-Feb-13 09:10:14

Oh, and a couple of hours of contact with a "non-nice friend" isn't actually going to do them any harm.....

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:12:58

It can be quite good for them to see that there are different lifestyles- as long as it isn't harmful.

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 09:16:16

and to spend time with non-females is also good ... poor Dads !! As I posted before we had a male babysitter he was the best thing since sliced bread to our kids!

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:19:30

My DH had died when DS was 5yrs- he adored it if a friend's father was around. They get an overload of females when they are little- they need more male contact and not less.

Blimey. YABU

imnotmymum Fri 22-Feb-13 09:22:30

Oh exotic I send you a hug and thanks

amillionyears Fri 22-Feb-13 09:32:13

seeker, it can depend.
As Adversecamber said further up, harmful things did happen to her.
It doesnt seem to happen very often, but it does happen.

Another thing that happened to our family. Again I shall be scant with details.
My boys this time. Used to go to a friends house. Turns out, friends dad had been growing illegal things in his garden.. Friends dad went to court. Got fined.
Some parents then wouldnt let their children go to the house again.
We carried on letting ours. As I told the other parents, we had never had a problem with how our boys were looked after there.
But I did say to our children that if ever they didnt feel comfortable there, or if they were given something to eat that they were not happy with, to tell us right away.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:32:45

It was a long time ago but thanks! I went on to marry again and have 2more so DS got the family he wanted. But that has its own difficulties - people with small children don't want you turning up at their house with an 8yr old if you go for a cup of tea. Equally if you have an older child they don't want a crawling baby when they are past toddler proofing. All this 'only going if you can accompany at the start' is fine if you have one child, or you can leave the others elsewhere - it is unworkable for lots of people. I don't see why people can't use their own judgement- don't they trust it?

TheFallenNinja Fri 22-Feb-13 09:32:58

The OP original statement. I love looking after kids, thoroughly enjoy play time and enjoy giving them back worn out and undamaged.

The notion dads are not to be trusted is thoroughly offensive.

OP isn't looking to see if it's an unreasonable point of view, rather seeking support.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:36:34

Why can't men enjoy the same? Is it odd if a man enjoys it? This is the reason that many won't come forward to be Scout leaders etc- the perception being that they can't just enjoy it and want to put something back into the community.

Imaginethat Fri 22-Feb-13 09:41:30

No I don't think you are at all unreasonable to feel uncomfortable about how plans were changed without your involvement. You are of course concerned for your (v young ) daughter's welfare. Quite right too.

Some parents are very cavalier about play dates, others are cautious. I think you should feel that you can turn them down or ask at least feel you can be open about your concerns. She is your child and ultimately it is your grief if something happens to her that you may have been able to prevent.

I approach play dates from the viewpoint that parents may feel like me, that is, concerned for their child's wellbeing. I let them know who will do pick up, who will be watching them, what they ate and, for sleepovers, when they went to sleep.

My ex offers play dates but cautiously and the parents know it's fine to say if they'd prefer their child visited at my house only. It isn't that they suspect my ex is a paedophile, they just feel more comfortable because I've had more contact with the child/mother. He is fine with this, he works in a part of social services and totally gets child safety issues.

Likewise, we would speak up if we were unsure about an arrqngemnt. We turned down a ride for dd to travel with another child's dad to their holiday house because my dd said it would be weird going only with the dad and not her friend or mum (they'd already gone) We were quite open about it and everyone laughed.

I also expect to be informed if they visit others while at friends and if others visit them.

These cautionary measures are based on my own experiences during childhood and my experiences as a news reporter. It doesn't matter whether they seem over the top to anyone else, they are what is right for me.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:41:52

My grandfather loved small children - if he stayed with us and sat in the garden they used to come around and sit and talk to him. He had the time. He was in his 80s. How sad if the local mothers had thought it sinister - and cut him off from such an innocent pleasure of children's company and conversation - even more so in that you think if it was Grandma it would be perfectly OK.

amillionyears Fri 22-Feb-13 09:43:06

See, I am not sure that it would have mattered to the op whether the "new" parent was a mum or dad.
I think that if she knew the dad at the school gate, and had arranged the playdate with him, and then it was the mum or stepmum or dads partner who showed up and was the playleader, I think she still would have been uneasy as she did not "know" the new person.
I could be wrong, but that is what I thought her emotions about it all were about.
I could have got that wrong, but that is why I responded to the thread in the way that I did.
I dont think the op is coming back.
I think she does come across as anxious and worried, and I suspect she doesnt much like changes in her life.
But that is ok. All people are different.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:43:40

I'm sure that every parent is concerned for their child's well being! That is why I let mine visit friends after school.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 09:45:00

My perception is that if the father had arranged it at the school gate she would have declined. He was a man.

AngelWreakinHavoc Fri 22-Feb-13 10:00:54

It is this comment from the op which I find offensive * I do not feel happy having my DD being supervised my male partners*

This is not about plans being changed at last minute or anything else. It is plain and simple the op does not trust men.

As I said upthread my youngest dc live with their dad who takes them to school and drops them off, I am mortified that there is people out there who may see this as weird or think they would keep their dc from playing with my dc because of this reaseon.

This thread is really quite upsetting to read tbh.

TheFallenNinja Fri 22-Feb-13 10:19:51

My biggest concern is the tarring of an entire gender with the brush of the deplorable actions of some of that gender.

Raising a child with healthy caution is one thing, with suspicion on such broad criteria cannot be healthy.

I'm as protective of my child as anyone and would rain down vengeance with immeasurable fury if ANYBODY hurt them. I am equally protective of any child in my care as this is my responsibility.

Passthesaltdear Fri 22-Feb-13 10:24:17

You are being v unreasonable

amillionyears Fri 22-Feb-13 10:48:01

She is scared.
Maybe something has happened to her previously.
Or maybe it is all the newspapers that she is reading.

stormforce10 Fri 22-Feb-13 10:52:32

I am short on time so can not read 12 pages sorry.

However - dd often has freinds round and regardless of who is supervising it seems to me that they are out of their clothes in into the contents of the dressing up box before they've been in the house 10 minutes. Perfectly normal. Relax

FrameyMcFrame Fri 22-Feb-13 11:20:28

I can understand a little bit Op. I would not feel comfortable arranging a plateaus then substituting my partner for me if the children and parents didn't know him.

Also if your child is young it makes a difference too. I don't think it's the fact that it's a man, just that it's a stranger.

FrameyMcFrame Fri 22-Feb-13 11:21:16

Plateus???? Playdate*

Stupid autocorrect

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 12:07:21

It seems that if there is a SAHD he is doomed to have a socially isolated DD. I can't see that OP would be happy to go and have a cup of tea with him, if his DP was out at work.

AngelWreakinHavoc Fri 22-Feb-13 12:32:46

exotic it does seem that way. Fortunately for my dd ( and my ex) they are not surrounded by sexist parents at the school gate and my dd has a good social life including shock horror having friends over to sleep and everything!

THERhubarb Fri 22-Feb-13 13:07:05

I think the OP was reacting defensively as she was torn apart. This is how I see it.

I don't think she was tarring all men with the same brush at all. She made the point in her first post that she did not know the father. She didn't know his name or anything about him.

Same when she went to collect her dd. She had made arrangements for this friend to come round to hers, she made those plans with the mother, then the father (who she doesn't know) turns up and says that he wants her dd to play at theirs instead. When she turns up to collect her dd, they have been playing dressing up and her dd doesn't have her trousers on.

Now we can all get super paranoid about that but to be fair we all have parenting boundaries. When my kids were younger I would not have felt comfortable with them getting undressed at a friend's house either. It may be different if I had known the parents but if it was first time round at a friend's house with adults I didn't know then I would also be worried.

As a mother I would also discourage visiting young children to get undressed at my house. I remember a party I had for my ds when he was 6. These little horrors all came into the house and one little lad was running around with his trousers round his ankles showing everyone his bum and willy. My dh actually told him that if he didn't pull his trousers up we'd call his parents.

Kids will be kids though! But I was very aware that the parents didn't know us very well and so I really didn't want their kids getting undressed at ours. And that's with me there. I would also not let dh supervise young kids who he didn't know alone. Not because I don't trust dh but it's not fair on the child to leave them with an adult they barely know.

So I don't think the OP is being unreasonable. But some of you have different boundaries and that's fine.

I think the OP is quite protective of her first child and I'm certainly not going to berate her for that. She never, at any point, said that her fears were based purely on the fact that it was a man. Never. She made it quite clear that she didn't know him and that, I think, was her main point. This was the mother's partner who she didn't know.

exoticfruits Fri 22-Feb-13 13:19:38

I follow all that BUT if the Dad always did the school run, she saw him everyday, and the mother was always at work , she still wouldn't want her DC going home with him.

Groovee Fri 22-Feb-13 13:23:19

If you are uncomfortable with your dd going to others to play and may be have lunch or tea, then it's best to say no.

As someone who works with children, it's sometimes other women I am wary off. There is one mother I'd never leave my children with despite her desperately offering a lot to have them.

When I've felt uncomfortable I've just said no!

5madthings Fri 22-Feb-13 14:12:26

exoticmy do does shifts and so does the school run quotes bit, more than me often and parents who know him now talk to him, but there is a definite difference in the way I found it much easier to involve myself in playground chat and integrate. It helps that we have three children at the school so have been around years but certainly with reception class parents it was/is harder for him to chat to them at drop off and pick up. Those who have older children in the school and so already know dp are fine but those new to the school experience would talk to me when I did drop off and not to dp. Its better now as its been few months, but there was a sort oif women sticking together and not talking to the dads that did drop off to begin with smile

Oh for goodness sake.

My ex had DDs birthday party this year. Eleventy million wee girls for a sleepover. He made pizza and fajitas with ice cream for afters.

I stayed at my house and drank wine. I call that a win win grin

Why is this even an issue? Both parents are just parents. There is no more reason to think the father will be a child molester than there is to think the mother will be a raving alcoholic or child abuser.

shesariver Fri 22-Feb-13 21:11:20

As my DH is a male child-minder I'm just glad the parents of his mindees aren't as narrow minded as some here thankfully!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now