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To not want my child playing out in the street in the evenings.

(84 Posts)
Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:30:50

The past week or so we have been getting knocks on the door nearly every night from kids in my dd's class asking for her to go out and play.

Each time I've said no as we are busy or something like that because I do not want her playing out in the street. She is 10 and in year 5. She does have quite a bit of independence as she as been walking to and from school each day since the start of year 5, and has been allowed to go the the shop at the end of our road for milk etc for the past couple of years. These were well rehearsed in advance, talked about what she should do in different situations and we're slowly built up to, I didn't just let her do it all of a sudden.

We live in a busy, urban area and these kids don't live in our street, they just live in our area. So AIBU to not let her out to play with them?

I know she is 10 and I don't mind her playing out the front of our house with her cousins for example if it's daytime or school holidays. But I do not want her off roaming round the neighbourhood doing God knows what with a load of other kids. They've also been knocking at 7pm, which I think is far too late as she normally goes to bed at 8 to read for half an hour. They knocked at 7:45pm on Friday night which I just think it's way too late. It's one thing playing outside but just roaming round the neighbourhood I don't agree with.

One of the kids who keeps calling has bullied dd since reception and only this year stopped when dd finally managed to stand up to her with me guiding and supporting her to do so. I do not want her hanging around with this girl as she is the ring leader and not a friend. Dd tolerates her now but knows exactly what she is like.

I actually grew up round here too and did play out with friends after school, but what started as innocent riding bikes around and playing etc soon progressed once we were teenagers to drinking in the park and messing around with boys. I don't want her to be one of those kids. I hated being at home when I was a kid but she and I enjoy hanging out together and the reality is she's busy, she goes to dance and her other activity 4-5 days a week and spends eow with her dad, so I want to see her and know what she's up to in the evenings. Kids her age are so easily influenced and I worry about peer pressure and so on.

What do you all think, AIBU?

TheHouseOnBellSt Mon 29-Jun-15 19:32:57

7 is too late but I don't see the difference between letting her go to the shop and play out.

Can't you just tell her "Yes but you have to stay in this street"

Heyho111 Mon 29-Jun-15 19:41:12

7 is too late but playing outside with friends is fine after school. Mine had a little park round the corner they used to meet in.
Why can't she pop to the shop without it pre planned. She should be fine to go now without planning it.
I would allow mine to play out from school till about 6 when its light. There would be an area she could play within. Such as mine could go down our road to the park and around the next road. If she went in a friends house or something different was happening she needed to ring me.

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:43:16

I think for me the difference is that if the kids who are calling lived in the street I would let her out as I could agree how far she is allowed to go etc. but these kids live all over the area and are obviously going all over the place, not even playing as such and I don't want her to do that.

Dd does accept that I have said no but I do worry that she may get picked on at some point. Though I know these kids are the minority in the class who are allowed out.

Goshthatsspicy Mon 29-Jun-15 19:44:08

What about the other kids, how do you feel about them?

littleshorty Mon 29-Jun-15 19:44:25

I see what you mean about what it leads on to when they're older.
Have you got a garden a couple of them could play in?

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:45:27

She does go to the shop now most days for me, sorry I just meant when she first started going it was something we built up to, like I would stand on the doorstep at first and watch her go and come back. But now she just goes when I need her to.

This feels like just letting her out and not knowing where she's going and I don't feel happy about that

IHaveBrilloHair Mon 29-Jun-15 19:45:36

She's 10, and 7 o'clock is late?
We inhabit different worlds.
Does your dd want to go out?

WinterOfOurDiscountTents15 Mon 29-Jun-15 19:46:48

But I do not want her off roaming round the neighbourhood doing God knows what with a load of other kids.

If you can't trust your child to just play outside and not roam around getting up to all sorts, then no, you shouldn't let her out. You could just teach her to be responsible and do as she's told though instead. That might also help with the "drinking in the park and messing around with boys" bit as well. hmm

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:48:53

I do have a garden which I'm happy for a couple of them to play in. But tonight there was about 6 or 8 of them at the door so don't want all them in my house. I have a 9wk old foster baby too I'm trying to deal with at these times to get to bed.

I'm not saying 7 is late, but I think it's too late on a school night to be just going out. I would say to be home at 7 really.

Italiangreyhound Mon 29-Jun-15 19:50:31

Your child, your choice. I think you are being totally reasonable.

You don't want her handing around at age 10 in the streets with a kid who used to bully her.

Just not sure why you are asking us!

Trust your judgement.

Work with her so she is ready when older for the choices she will have to make. Guide her.

Children are too precious to leave to chance or to bullies.

You are a great mum.

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:52:16

Winter that is exactly what I teach her but I think her time is better spent seeing her family and friends doing productive things rather than roaming round the neighbourhood.

We have also in the past few months had a van pull up to kids twice and tried to get girls from dd's school to get in. That makes me nervous. She knows not to obviously but I do feel anxious about not knowing where she is.

usualsuspect333 Mon 29-Jun-15 19:52:40

Up to you really. Mine all played out.

Mozzereena Mon 29-Jun-15 19:54:13

Your DD is very lucky that she has you watching out for her.
I would never allow my 2 DDs to play out with kids that came knocking for them at that age or even when they were teenaged. They are now independent, confident adults.
I believe a parent's instinct is there to protect her child. YANBU.

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 19:55:25

Thank you Italian. I just was questioning myself as to whether iabu when I keep seeing all these kids at the door. I feel like I'm making this decision for the right reasons, i just wanted to know whether others thought it was unfair as I don't know what goes on in other people's worlds.

Seriouslyffs Mon 29-Jun-15 19:55:38

I agree with you. What does she think?

saoirse31 Mon 29-Jun-15 20:00:05

I think that you have to let her out so that she can develop, get used to situations etc. how else will she learn. I don't really get the big build up to going to a shop
down the road... surely it's not that complicated in terms of what to do and not to do. at some stage you're going to have to trust her to go out by herself and she needs to develop trust in herself too... and not see going out, living, only in terms of threats to her.
to me 7 is v early.... tbh 8 seems v early to go to bed to me but different strokes etc...

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 20:01:28

The first time they knocked she was playing in the garden so didn't know until I told her afterwards. She was a bit upset but I explained the reasons and that when I was a kid my parents couldn't afford hobbies for me, so I had nothing else to do. But she has her dance which she loves and an extended family to spend time with so she isn't missing out by not doing this. She was happy with that explanation and she's been fine since.

usualsuspect333 Mon 29-Jun-15 20:01:43

Mine all played out with the local kids.

Good luck on keeping her in when shes a teenager.

WinterOfOurDiscountTents15 Mon 29-Jun-15 20:02:08

But why would you not know where she is? My ten year old plays out but I always know exactly where he is, that is a condition of being allowed out.

You seem to think there are only two extremes: either inside at all times or marauding around unknown places doing nefarious deeds. How about something in the middle?

sliceofsoup Mon 29-Jun-15 20:02:14

My 6 year old plays out, she has boundaries where she isn't allowed past. She is basically allowed on the tarmac and grass bit in front of our house, or in one of the girls houses that I know the parents. If she wants to go into any one else's house she has to come ask first. She isn't allowed to the park alone, even though several of the kids, some younger, are. Minus twice at the start when she went anyway and I had to go get her back, she is good about saying she isn't allowed now and won't go.

Maybe the difference is that I can see her at all times from the living room and kitchen and garden?

I don't know. But at 10 I think your DD goes to bed quite early too. I can see why you wouldn't want her roaming all over, but why couldn't she go out and just stay within sight of the house?

I did have a very very strict childhood with no freedom, so I am maybe too lenient as a result.

Goshthatsspicy Mon 29-Jun-15 20:02:32

I think you have already done a good job.
I'm guessing you don't want her roaming though? I also think she is too young for that. A trip to the shop, is a defined 'exercise' a point where she returns etc...
If you can ward off the hanging round Street corners, for a bit longer - then l'd go for it.
I built up to things with mine. My eldest could play 'out' but not just dissappear. At 16 he can now go anywhere he likes. I trainedhim to let me know his plans, and we went from there. I'm in the process of doing the same with my (nearly) 12 year old. My daughter is only six. Don't feel pressured by that doorbell. You don't have to comply with the requests. I took quite a long time to learn that! Good luck.

Candycoco Mon 29-Jun-15 20:03:15

Yes I will trust her to go out at some stage but to do things like go to the cinema or to town with friends. Not roaming around pointlessly a large, busy area for no reason.

Cabawill Mon 29-Jun-15 20:04:24

I think you're being entirely reasonable. I just don't understand parents who let their children roam around the streets without supervision on school nights- even at 10 years old.

Your child may be perfectly responsible and polite on their own but experience tells me that once part of a group of 8-10 they tend to get a bit silly.

SillyStuffBiting Mon 29-Jun-15 20:04:25

My son the same age is still playing out now.

They play games, take out stuff to do/swap (mini figures, loom bands, whatever the latest craze is), ride bikes, find dens, go to the park etc. It's great fun for them. It's light at night for such a short part of the year, he will be home and in his bed sleeping by 9.

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