My dd is nearly 12 and has just started high school, she is my first born so I am all new at this stuff.
She has a friend from primary who has latched on to my dd. They walk to and from school together which is fine, she lives about a 10 min walk away.
This child keeps coming home with DD after school, coming right in the house begging for DD to go with her to her house I keep telling her no DD has homework etc. She turned up yesterday as we were having tea and just came in and said I will wait till you have finished, then DD went to the park with her and DD was a bit late home. This girl then come in again and basically I had to tell her to go in the end.
When I was at school you made prearranged visits to someones house maybe once a week or so. But this is turning into a daily event. This girl just wanders in and I am feeling uncomfortable in my own home. My DD is shy and quite easily led.
Is this normal once kids grow up or should I tell this girl not to come back unless invited.
I think by the time they get to upper junior you have to accept that it's their home as much as yours, so if you can bring a friend home or have someone round for a coffee without pre-arranging it with dc, then they have the same right.
Or else you can have a general family rule that nobody can bring anyone home without pre-arranging it with the rest of the family. After all, your friend dropping in for a coffee impacts on them in a very similar way to their friends dropping in for a play or chat.
Or you can have a rule that we are open on these days, but on e.g. Friday nobody brings anyone home without checking it with the rest of the family.
Different with small children because then you actually have to do the work of looking after them and entertaining them.
It sounds to me as if your DD's new friend may have some issues at home Obviously that doesn't make her your problem exactly, but if it was one of my DD's friends I would want to (gently) find out if there was a problem.
Absolutely agree with the 4:30pm cut off for after school socialising, though - going to introduce that for my 2 dd's - great idea!
Coming in without knocking is not on, but otherwise I wouldn't have an issue.
Kids come to the door, they usually ask if my sons are free and if we are in the middle of dinner etc then I say not at moment but give them a convenient time to come back either that day or another day. If one of the boys answer the door then it's up to them but then they will shout to ask, how long until dinner etc. They know if they have any homework or activities that day.
Your daughter is almost 12 and in High school, she should be able to make her own arrangments from within whatever boundaries you have set. I'd work with her on that and if she doesn't want to play with the girls but feels obliged, support her in saying No, even if she has to make you the bad guy i.e. "Sorry I can't come out just now, my mum says we are about to have dinner/I've got homework/i've got chores/i'm feeling tired" etc etc.
Thanks all for your help and insights. DD said that she doesn't really like this girl that much so I told her just to say "Mum says I have got to much homework" etc. She doesn't hang round with this girl at school at all, as this girl has other friends.
We live in an estate with a lot of kids and some do knock on for her and they are more that happy to come back later if we are eating etc, but this just makes me sound so awful, I just have a bad feeling about this girl :-(