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At what age do you think it's okay to send your child over to someone's house by themselves for a playdate? How about sleepovers as well?

My daughter is 7, has a best friend. Only had two playdates. Took my dd to friend's house to play and I stayed. Second time the child's mom was okay with sending her dd to our place with me there to supervise. I don't know the child's mom very well except that she's a single mom, works full time, living with her parents. Grandma and Grandpa are taking care of child. I'm not comfortable sending my child over there alone since I was told by this woman herself that when grandpa was watching the child she almost drowned in pool because grandpa wasn't paying attention! Grandma isn't happy about supervising playdates either. This woman is angry that I won't send my child over there to play while I'm not there and stated the girls can't play together until my daughter goes over there unsupervised by me? I'm a SAHM and told her girls can play at my house since I'll be there to supervise. I'm sad girls are being kept apart because of this. Do you think I'm being unreasonable?

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Asked by Anonymous at 5:10 PM on Jun. 27, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Answers (9)
  • My kids have never spent the night anywhere except home and they are 2, 4, and 5. If I were to let them stay someplace (which I'm not against) I'd have to be 100% certain they'd be properly taken care of. I couldn't let them go someplace if I had any doubts. I'd probably drive myself crazy thinking about all the "what-if's".

    Answer by ReneeK3 at 5:12 PM on Jun. 27, 2008

  • My kids (7 and 6) have NEVER been over to a house for a play-date without me. They have dropped off for B-day parties over the course of the school year, but those were at public places like mini-golf.

    The only sleep overs they have done is at my moms and that's all they will be doing for a long while...I'm just not ready for them to be staying at people's homes.

    In my opinion I think the other mom was out of line by saying your daughter can only be over if you leave her.

    Answer by SAHMinIL at 5:37 PM on Jun. 27, 2008

  • I don't blame you for not letting your child go for a play date or to spend the night. My son and daughter are both 6 and have never spent the night anywhere other than with family. I did leave him at a friend's birthday party for an hour, the mom asked if he could spend the night but I just couldn't do it. Noone watches your child like you do...and I just have thoughts of all that could happen. I may be overprotective, but it will be a long time before my children are allowed at someone's house without me, unless I've known them for a long time and know them well. Just the fact that the other mother said they can't play together until your daughter comes without you would send red flags up to me.

    Answer by KennsWifey at 7:31 PM on Jun. 27, 2008

  • Ive been asking myself the same Q latley..
    My son whos 6 (7 in Oct) wants to go play at his friends house.. ive met the friends dad once and he seems OK but im a what IF type of person too and could make myself sick thinking about them...

    Answer by Sunnysidemama at 10:40 PM on Jun. 27, 2008

  • A stranger is only a person you haven't met yet. If a person is irresponsible or not fit to care for children, by knowing who they are will only relieve your self-doubts. As a general safety rule I meet new play dates at a park or other public form of entertainment. After a few meets you can get a good idea of their parenting, basic ethics (do they swear, spank, are negligent). My son is soon having his 7th b-day and wants a sleepover w/ 3 friends. I am sending my baby to grandmas so I can better supervise the boys.

    Answer by h3art2h0m3 at 12:53 AM on Jun. 28, 2008

  • NO, you are not being unreasonable. She has given you reasons not to leave your child there without you. If she has any problem with it, its her problem. And, because of her being angry over something so stupid, a red flag popped up and your inner voice is telling you that something is not ok. You haven't known her that long and red flags are coming up. I would end the relationship.

    Answer by tripsmom1 at 9:54 PM on Jun. 28, 2008

  • My kids are 6 and 8 and they play with other kids in the neighborhood all the time without me there but we know the parents very well and their kids are at my house as well, we kind of take turns.I would NEVER let them have a playdate with someone that I didn't know very well unless I was there to supervise. They've both had sleepovers but, again we know the parents very well, we go to church with them and have known them since our children were in the nursery together, in diapers. I don't think it depends so much on the child's age, I think it depends more on the individual situation and if you don't feel comfortable with it, don't do it!!

    Answer by Bethsunshine at 5:31 PM on Jun. 30, 2008

  • i have to agree with your inner voice. summer will be over before we know it and there will be new friends and play dates. any responsible mom would understand your wanting to be there. you made the right choice in my book.

    Answer by aruba3 at 7:28 PM on Jul. 1, 2008

  • I know we are all struggling in finding some better medium for our kids to play. I found a Web site were we can organize the playdates within our community. I feel it is a very good for us to get to know the families around our neighborhood who have same age group kids. Check this out and let me know if you are from Hopkins, we can setup a playdate for our kids.


    Answer by Anonymous at 11:55 PM on Jul. 26, 2008

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