Daycare Dervish

5 Jun

Letterbalm Broken CrayonsDear LetterBalm: Three of us met at the daycare center for our kids last September, and we hit it off. We’ve gotten together for lunches and movies, hosted dinners with our husbands – we’ve all become friends, mainly because we aren’t helicopter parents and we agree on how to raise our kids. The problem is one of the other moms. Her son is the same age as ours, but he’s a handful, even at age four. He sometimes hits, throws toys and is disruptive during quiet times. His mom gets very touchy if anyone says anything about her child. (She screamed at one of the caregivers when it was suggested that she have her child tested.) She keeps asking us to hang out, but we don’t want her and her son around. How can I discourage her once and for all?

–Mommie Dearest

Did you ever consider that the mommy with the hellion is just looking for acceptance from the cool mommies? While Ms. L.B. doesn’t condone the boy’s behavior, she suggests that there is more here than meets the eye. Is the mom a single mother? Does she have a job? Does she have a respite from her whirling dervish of a son? Perhaps by befriending her on occasion, you and your friends – without ganging up on her – might casually broach the issue of her son’s behavior. Difficult subjects are sometimes handled better at lunch over a Cobb salad and coffee. Check with your friends first to make sure they agree to her company. Limit your contact with her and give her the groundrules first. Talk with her separately:

Penny, I know you’ve asked several times to get together with Lucy, Sheila and me. But we do have some informal rules that seem to work for us. We don’t have our kids with us during these get-togethers – that’s what keeps us sane! Only kidding … But we’ve come to treasure these times together simply because we recharge our batteries and don’t have to share attention with the kids. In fact, we usually don’t even talk about them most of the time. If you want to hang out with us for lunch once in a while, we’d be happy to have you.

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One Response to “Daycare Dervish”

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