Picking and Choosing Friends
All of our back yards connect, so over the course of the summer, while playing with the neighbors on either side of us, our sons were introduced to the new little boy and his two older sisters.
The boys weren’t really interested in playing with them till about three weeks ago. Right around the same time my oldest son learned that the little boy would also be in his Kindergarten class. I was really excited because I knew this would be great for him.
When I was a kid, my best friend lived right across the street from me, and we were inseparable. Which is how Camden became with this little boy, very quickly.
Every morning he would wake up and want to play with him. Then when school started, as soon as he got off the bus in the afternoon he would be begging to go over to his house. After lunch, and whatever homework or notes we got, it was ok with me – of course if it was ok with the boys mother.
We had met, talked… not really clicked, but not everyone parent you come across is going to be your best friend, right?
With the long hours my husband works, he had not met either parents… until yesterday. My husband was outside doing yard work, and I was inside vacuuming and doing my typical Sunday laundry routine. He asked DH if he could walk up two houses to play, which was fine. He went, and my husband watched as he asked if they could play.
A half hour later when my husband came back around to the front yard, he flipped out when he saw the little boys older sisters (6th grader and 4th grader) running across our very busy road, and then teasing and taunting the two little boys to follow them. In moments Camden was running home and my husband was running in the direction of the adult that was out front supervising them while they played chicken with cars.
Needless to say, Camden was of course lectured about the road, which he has been so many times before. Not because he had done anything wrong, but because apparently I have to start dealing with peer pressure at the age of four. I thought I would at least make it a couple more years before I had to deal with something like this.
After a long talk we decided that the only time the two boys are going to be able to play is when his sisters aren’t around. I am not comfortable with him hanging around girls that age, and I am not comfortable with them trying to lour them into trouble. What they do in their own home, with their own little brother is the business of their parents. But I will not put my own child into that situation again.
The two boys can also of course always play over here, but that will be the extent of their play.
I feel horrible because he really likes playing with this little boy, but I cannot have these little girls, or the lax parenting in their home putting my son in danger. I know any other parent would be on the same page as well. At least I hope.
I just… am so new at all these different issues, I can only hope I am doing the right thing!