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Do you generally try to reciprocate playdates?

(16 Posts)
Earlybird Mon 11-Aug-08 16:36:14

....and if not, why not?

We seem to be hosting an inordinate amount of unreciprocated playdates. Everyone is thrilled to come play, but return invitations are in short supply - especially noticeable over the summer break.

I completely understand that it is perhaps easier for me to host as dd is an only child so I don't have multiple schedules/demands to juggle. Also, in some ways, it is easier for me to inviate a pal for dd rather than attempt to occupy her all day every day. I don't necessarily 'expect' equal reciprocation, but we've invited some children 3, 4, 5 times without a return invite.

Am starting to feel like the unpaid babysitter/nanny.......or am I just an old grump? (Perhaps I should take off my 'martyr hat' now....grin)

Dynamicnanny Mon 11-Aug-08 16:55:43

I know how you feel it seems that people are more than happy to come and play with us at ours but we hardly get invited there - and my 2 are lovely and well behaved

hippipotami Mon 11-Aug-08 17:02:00

I always try to reciprocate, I don't like to feel I 'owe' someone.

Seuss Mon 11-Aug-08 17:02:33

We're the same - everyone seems to come to us, even family. I find some people take advantage because we have quite a big garden with lots of garden toys. But having said that ds2 had a playdate last term that I haven't reciprocated although I intend to next term. For me the reason was all the end of term sportsdays/parties etc.

castille Mon 11-Aug-08 17:03:20

I try to.

But I think the only child thing might be part of it Earlybird - it's actually more complicated when we have a friend over as that means the other DD is left out. So it's better to try to invite a friend for each, which isn't always possible, partic in the holidays.

bythepowerofgreyskull Mon 11-Aug-08 17:04:22

I try to as much as possible, I guess it may not balance over one holiday break but does over the course of a term,

Califrau Mon 11-Aug-08 17:10:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Earlybird Mon 11-Aug-08 17:11:44

I definitely am not a playdate 'scorekeeper' (ie, totting up how many times we've hosted vs return invites), but after a flurry of 'what are you doing this week' phone calls from various Mums, it dawned on me that I am hosting 5 playdates between now and next Monday. And dd is not going anywhere else to play.

This past Saturday, dd played with an absolutely lovely child who we have hosted 7 or 8 times without a return invite (she is one of 4, so I'm sure it's complicated for her Mum to return invites).

I think I'm veering into mug territory....

newpup Mon 11-Aug-08 17:23:49

Most of ours are reciprocated. However, DD1 has a lovely friend whose mother I know quite well, we have had her to play/tea 5 times now and not once has DD been invited back! Nice as she is, mum is very lazy and would prefer not to have to organise anything herself. It is not just us, she does not invite anyone to her house. I did actually say to DH that i would not invite her again as it is really unfair but DD loves her and she is no trouble, a lovely girl. Maybe, I should suggest to her mum she hosts next time!!

Earlybird Mon 11-Aug-08 17:47:02

When we lived in London, I sometimes hesitated to host because our flat was quite small. Now am fortunate enough to have lots of room, and also access to an outdoor swimming pool in the summer months (not at home, I hasten to add).

Am genuinely happy to host, but for some reason it rankled when one Mum said 'oh good, I really need to get some work done', and I thought....'well I really need to get some work done too'!

sarah293 Mon 11-Aug-08 17:50:08

Message withdrawn

Romy7 Mon 11-Aug-08 17:54:06

Oh. i spend half my life feeling guilty about not reciprocating playdates. I've got three dcs at different schools/ nurseries, and work/ study so have really odd shifts (share school runs with another mum but have odd after school club/ childminder days)... to be honest it takes me all my energy to remember which of mine (and hers) i'm picking up where and when. dd2 has cp and is only just at the point that she can tolerate dd1 and ds having friends at home without a meltdown... my worst nightmare is that one of their friend's mums is sitting at home twittering 'that lazy cow - why doesn't she have dd over very often?'
perhaps i need to start refusing playdates and upset my (beautifully behaved, honestgrin) older dcs because i can't face the embarassment at the school gates on the few occasions i manage to get there... really sorry if i owe any of you lot, don't think i don't realise how indebted i am.

windyweather Mon 11-Aug-08 18:14:50

Earlybird,
I am same, although you don't intentional keep count but can not help it when your dd is not invited.
I have had several friends over one at a time, one girl invited 4/5times and never invite back my dd. said to dh not coing again until dd goes there, dd was eventually asked after about 1 year. never asked dd again.
Another close friend does come a bit, and I can say i am glad dd does not get invited back as she is allowed to play out and I don't want my dd to. Also mum just had 3rd dc so doesn;t need hassle of my noisy monkey.

Some mums are very clicky and just have certain kids over but dont mind you having their brood, cannot be bothered having yours. sometimes I am glad and would rather have them here so I can keep an eye on dd.

mrsruffallo Mon 11-Aug-08 18:29:13

I always make an effort to reciprocate, I consider it rude not to

ChasingSquirrels Mon 11-Aug-08 18:34:40

yes, although ds1 has been to a particular child's house twice and we haven't had him back yet - not for any reason, just timing.

Acinonyx Mon 11-Aug-08 18:48:14

Since dd is an only child I am too keen for her to have playmates to be put out about return invitations. But I do feel a bit confused on the ettiquette and unsure whether it will seem a bit desperate or pushy to invite someone again who has not reciprocated. I am in exactly this position with a neighbour. She brought her 2 dcs who were a bit wild and dd got a bit overwhelmed - and on the face of it did seem to turn very difficult. But dd has asked to play with them again - but I don't know what to do. I was hoping we would just bump into each other but we haven't. Dd is only just 3 so playdates are with mums too.

When I was a child (and an only) there were always kids at the house and I realise now that my mum encouraged an open-house style to keep me entertained (and out of her hair). I did go to some other houses - but there were always some kids whose houses you never went to - never knew why.

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