How would you handle this
Moms View Message Board: General Discussion: Archive June 2004:
How would you handle this
Now that the weather is nicer, we have been playing outside a lot lately. Usually, my 2 boys(ages 6 and 3) are outside with a few neighbor boys. Most of the boys range in age from 7 to 12. Since I have my younger ds, I do not allow my dks to play in the front yard without me. I always sit outside while they play and most days one of my neighbors will sit with me. My problem is a neighbor that lives about 5 houses down. She is continually sending her 5 yr. old twins out and she doesn't supervise them. I really don't want to be responsible for them. For one, their house is around a little bend in the road, so I can't see all the way down. They go back and forth and I have to continually get up and see where they are. My dks know they have to stay within a few houses of ours so I can keep and eye on them. Also, they are bratty and sassy. I don't tolerate this with my own dks and I sure don't want to put up with it from other dks. My neighbors that are usually outside with me say she is known for doing this. She actually had the nerve one day to get upset with me because I didn't know where her dks were.(They had gone into another neighbors house down the street) I told her that I didn't know that I was suppose to be watching them. She just said that she figured I would since I was already outside and walked away before I could respond. Since we are fairly new here I don't want to start trouble, but I really don't think this is fair. What do you think?? This women's ds is on my ds's baseball team so we see her often. I have come to realize that she is a little overbearing and pushy. When I mentioned to my one neighbor that I was going to say something she told me good luck.
The nerve of some people!! How incredibly rude! I'm glad you told her you weren't aware you were supposed to be watching her kids. I think if I was in your shoes I would tell her at the first opportunity (in a cheery, neighborly voice), "Hey, if you ever need someone to watch the kids, give me a call ahead of time. It's nice to make a little money baby-sitting every now and then." *Smile* Or something to that effect. That way you're tactfully telling her that she shouldn't assume you're watching her kids. If her kids meander over to your house I'd send them home. I'm SO glad we don't have neighbors like this!
I think she is out of her mind to allow 5 year olds outside without supervision---her supervision. This needs to be nipped in the bud before she gets it in her head she can always let them go and they will be your responsibility.
I would make it clear to her that you are not her childrens baby-sitter.
I will never understand parents that allow young children to walk out the front door. There are just too many things that could happen (aside from kidnapping just crossing the street could result in a child being hurt or worse killed!)
Good luck dealing with her!
I would just tell her that you can't be responsible for her kids while they are playing outside. Tell her you are busy at home, and so you are in and out of the house all the time and can't keep track of everyones kids.
I would make it very clear. Otherwise, if heaven forbid something terrible happened to her kids, she will put you on a major guilt trip. Also, if she is as pushy as you say she is....she might even *blame* you.
I would try to end the scenario ASAP before it goes any further.
I know all of this is easier said than done.
I agree with the ladies above.
There are so many kids missing and kidnapped, what is she thinking?
I would do something real "suthun" (that's southern LOL) like saying "I am so flattered that you are so confident in my parenting abilities that you want me to watch your kids, but I just feel like that is more than I can handle. I am in and out with the little one so much that I can't really keep an eye on yours. Wouldn't you just feel awful for having me watch them if anything happened? Why not bring down a lawn chair and visit with us? I would hate to have to send your boys home the next time they come down"
And then everytime they come down, say "oh sweetie, I am afraid you are going have to go home. I can't watch you."
I also would tell her something similar to what everyone else said. It is the truth. Just tell her you can't be responsible supervising her children. You don't feel comfortable with them coming over unsupervised. Could you imagine what could happen if something were to happen to these children. Sounds to me their mother would point the finger directly at you. Sounds like your other neighbour knows exactly what this lady is like.
Yes, I am going to say something because I don't want to be responsible if anything were to happen to them. My one neighbor just said that it won't make any difference, she will still send them out. I see them out all the time with no one watching them. However, I will say that she is not the only one in our neighborhood. I see lots of little ones out riding bikes, etc with no supervision. I don't know if it is because we live in a small town now or what. But I have never lived anywhere else that younger dks were not supervised out front by one of their parents. My dh said last night that he thinks she waits by the window watching for someone to be out, so she can send them over. Dh was practicing baseball with ds last night and they invited themselves to join in.
Just keep sending them back home if they come to your house undersupervised. But, that said, in our neighborhood the kids run all over. It's nothing to be out playing ball in our front yard and have a bunch of kids join in too.
I have a fenced yard & don't allow my ds out by himself. My SIL allows her soon to be 5 year old out all the time, it just amazes me. I agree with Annie, just keep sending them back home. I guess you could send her a bill for watching them.
Texannie, our neighborhood is the same way, there are always kids running everywhere. I don't mind them playing in our yard (we don't have fences here) My boys love playing with all the kids. I guess it is just the fact that all the other neighbors with dks this age are at least outside while their kids are out, or they will at least ask if you can keep an eye on them. I just hate the fact that she just sends them over without asking. With the other neighbors it seems that we all take our turn having the kids play at our house. She never does this. I guess I hate to be taken advantage of and her dks are also really difficult, which is probably the reason she just sends them out all day.
Just keep sending them back with a sweet, "I am so sorry, tell your mom I can't watch you right now."
I agree with all above. I think it was really rude what she said.I think the southern way of handling it is really good. I would not let them in your yard, especially if they are brat's.
I had a friend of mine come over to my house with her twins, and they were around five and she did not watch them at all, she just wanted to drink coffee, well they smashed my plastic garbage can to bits and threw my kids bikes in the stream that was behind my house very steep to get down to the stream, and they wrecked numerous other things, so I told her, that i would prefer that she did not bring them over anymore untill she got a handle on them, as I could not have them wrecking stuff, and told her she needed to replace my garbage can, I also called the boys father and got him to come over to the house to pluck the bikes out of the stream along with all the other stuff I had around the yard, pots etc.. she did not bring them back and did not come over, but at least the bikes did not end up in the stream anymore . If the boys are not behaving themselves I would definately not let them in the yard. Which is hard to do, when all the neihbour kids are running around. One way I suppose you could handle it, is to tell her if her kids want to come and play they can, but she is to call over first, then you call her when they are on their way back, but you can not keep an eye on them, when they are just out on the street. Tell her all the parents in the neihbourhood, keep an eye out,for any problems, but each parents takes the responsibility of their own kids, and say they your little one is running in and out of the house and your first responsibilty is to your little one, and you can not keep an eye on her kids, as well as all the other kids in the neihbourhood, as it would just be to hard to keep track of all the children, when they are running from house to house. I personally think the woman is off her rocker, she should have said, did you see which way my kids went? and not acted like you should be watching her kids every move. If she was just asking which way the kids went I see nothing wrong with that, the problem I have was with the comment about you watching them since you were out side anyway that is uncalled for.
Well, last night was it. I am calling her this morning. After we put our dks to bed, dh told me that while I was at the store one of the twins came over while they were playing outside. Dh asked where the other twin was and she told him that he was at the store with her parents. Dh asked if there was an adult at her house. She said no, her parents told her to come down and play at our house or the neighbors until they got home!!!! This is just ridiculous. I am just nicely going to tell her that my little one is a handful(which he is and everyone around here knows it ) and that I can not be responsible for her dks too. She will either need to watch them herself when they are out or make other arrnagements because I would hate for something to happen to them. I will try and be as polite as possible, but now I just don't care if she gets upset or not.
Well it seems to me that you 2 don't even know each other well and it appauls me that a mother would assume that someone she barely knows would watch her kids, i would never even ask someone to watch my children that i did not know! I am not saying there is anything wrong with you.. but she doesn't know that! What happens if you were to have an emergency with your own children? Since you were never asked to watch them your mind would not even consider them when taking care of the emergency! Then what? Let us know what happens!
I guess I am rude but being polite at this point would not be a concern. Sending your child at a neighbors house (without arranging it with neighbor) and taking off---is child abandonment.
Perhaps you should warn her that should it continue it will be an issue for child protection services. The nerve of this woman! She is not only taking advantage of you but shows little concern for the well being of her children!
Any real parent would never do this. Not only because of it being rude but most importantly because most mother's worry about what their child is doing and for their safety!
She is lucky that I am not her neighbor. I would have called the cops & explained that a little 5 year old was left unsupervised while her family went to the store.
Good luck...she sounds like a winner.
I just called her. She was actually okay on the phone. I just totally disagree with her. She said that she didn't really expect me to watch her dks. She said that she felt comfortable sending them out alone because of how family oriented our neighborhood is. I told her that we obviously disagree on this, and I just didn't want her to think I would be responsible for them. I also told her that she should never send either one of her dks to my house when she wasn't home unless she asked me first. She said someone was home and that her dd was confused??? I think not. Oh well, it is just hard to send them away when everyone else is out playing. I then mentioned that her dd was very disrespectful to me and I would not tolerate it. I guess I will just have to deal with it and send them home when they start acting up. I guess I just realize that am talking to deaf ears.
The parents in our apartment community also let their children run around. 4 & 5 years old running all around by themselves! They could get hit by a car or anything! One little girl came to our apartment a day after we moved in & said her mom said she could come over & play! I had no idea who she was or who her mom was. I don't mind her playing with my kids, but I would NEVER allow my children to go into someone else's home without knowing who they are first! I finally found out how old she is, what her name is & where she lived. So I walked downstairs where she lives to introduce myself to the mom. The mom was talking on the phone & didn't even get off the phone to meet me. She doesn't know anything about me, just because i have children she thinks it's ok for her daughter to be here!? For all she knows we could be kidnappers or something! I see that same little girl every day running around the complex by herself or with some other kids.
We have a registered sex offender in our area & I don't think that I will EVER feel comfortable with my kids being out by themselves, no matter how old they are!
These parents are the same ones that blame everyone else if (God forbid) something would happen to their child!
Debbie, I think I would avoid this woman like a bad habit! Her children would suddenly become VERY valuable to her if something were to happen to them on your property. She'd sue you! I once knew a family that was sued because a neighbor kid came in their yard when they weren't even home, raced his Big Wheel down the driveway, hit their lampost, and sustained brain damage. He was in their yard without the owners' knowledge or permission. The gentleman that got sued was a disabled Vietnam veteran.
I would just tell her that your children have a select group of kids that they play with, and that anybody else is a "crowd".