Author Topic: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)  (Read 3876 times)

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guihong

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I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« on: March 01, 2013, 05:38:18 PM »
Hi all,

The BG: This concerns DD14's good friend and our neighbor, "Hannah" and her brother "Bobby", who is DS12's friend.  These are the kids who were living with their father-and often spent time alone-while their mother was in jail.  For that reason, I often had them in my own home and they became part of the family in a way.  The mother got out of jail around Thanksgiving; I've met her and liked her.  They still spend weekend nights here quite often.

A couple of weeks ago, on Friday afternoon, Hannah via DD springs it on us that her parents were going out of town and that could she and Bobby stay with us?  I grumbled, but said OK.  No parents came over to explain, and there was no offer to pick up pizza or dinner. 

So, today, DD "remembers" that a few days ago Hannah asked her if she and Bobby could spend the night.  Again, no parents called or came over (we're neighbors one building over).  One, DD knew we had said "no sleepovers" for this weekend.  Second, DD is going to another friend's house for a sleepover!

And I did it!  I said "Tell Hannah that it won't be possible".

So why do I feel so guilty and rude?

Thanks for listening!






Sharnita

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2013, 05:41:48 PM »
You feel guilty because there is something hinky about parents with kids this young whose parents do not plan ahead where they will be staying or verify that they will be in the care of an adult.  It isn't your fault and you shouldn't take them in because of that but I would ask DD who they are staying with and drop by to make sure they are where they are supposed to be, with a responsible adult, are safe.

Margo

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2013, 05:47:51 PM »
*hugs* you feel guilty and rude because you're a nice person, and you feel sympathy for these kids who have less-than-ideal parents.

But your responsibility is your own family, including setting and maintaining boundaries, which you've done.
If you are worried that the kids will be left alone, you could let Hannah know that you'd be OK for her to phone you if she needs to.
Is speaking to one of their parents, to let them know that any requests need to be parent-to-parent, in future, an option?

lisastitch

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2013, 06:22:26 PM »
I would feel guilty, knowing that they are in a less--than-ideal situation, and that they would be better off at my house.  I totally get your feeling guilty.
Your first obligation is to your family.
Hugs-it's hard to see a situation like this and not want to do something.

YummyMummy66

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2013, 07:24:45 PM »
You don't need to feel guilty or rude, but next time, I suggest talking to the parents first. 

I would never have kids over without talking to the parents to discuss details, etc.  I have learned that if you leave things up to the kids, you never know when the kids are going to leave!

Mammavan3

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2013, 07:28:40 PM »
Because you are soft-hearted and know how good it is for these kids to spend time with your family.

chibichan

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2013, 07:52:19 PM »
Don't feel guilty - you are well within your rights to expect a request like this to come from the parents . Hannah was probably
looking for a "better" alternative to her parent's plan .

I am reminded of a family I once babysat for . The kids were , ahem , challenging ....The Mom told me that their last babysitter ( a grown woman ) who was supposed to be watching the kids ( ages 7 , 9 ) until 5 PM , walked into the livingroom and saw the oldest boy hanging up the telephone . He then announced to the sitter " My Mom called and she's coming home now , so you can leave ."

Yes , she left  :o .

I , a 16 year old at the time , learned a valuable lesson that day .
The key to avoiding trouble is to learn to recognize it from a distance.

Kiwichick

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2013, 08:12:36 PM »
Didn't you have a similar ongoing issue with your downstairs neighbours a while back?  I'd talk to the parents and tell them they need to speak to you directly for any child care they expect from you, that's if you want to get roped into it at all.

gramma dishes

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2013, 08:21:32 PM »

...   So, today, DD "remembers" that a few days ago Hannah asked her if she and Bobby could spend the night.  Again, no parents called or came over (we're neighbors one building over).  ...

You feel guilty because you don't know what's going to happen to the other woman's kids.  But they're NOT your responsibility. 

I would, however, make a phone call to the mother and tell her that you're sorry, but you have other plans for this weekend and you absolutely under no circumstances will be able to keep her children so that she doesn't just ASSUME that the kids are with you and go off on her merry way leaving them home alone to do as they wish. 

(By the way, kids that age do sometimes pull that trick -- "Oh, I'm going to be at Jeremy's house" knowing full well that Jeremy's mother said 'No, you're not!')

m2kbug

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2013, 09:05:35 PM »
You feel guilty because you want your children to be happy and you want these other children to be happy too, but these arrangements didn't work.  It always hurts to say no.  Always.  Part of life is expecting things don't always work out like we planned, but as a parent, you really wish to shield your babies from from life's boo-boo's.  It just hurts. 

As my children have moved into the tweens and teens, I have found that there is less parental involvement in some of these plans.  I have been met with the situation where these kids make plans with each other, yet fail to let their parents in on it, so you're left making these plans work or you're saying "no"...and also having a discussion with your children about making plans without being clear this plan is even plausible and...I don't know...talk to the parents?? 

I am surprised the number of times I am making phone calls and making arrangements where the other parents don't seem care care at all.  I certainly don't send my children to their house and whether I accept these children in my home is questionable.  I do expect communication with the other parents at some point. 

I feel your pain and I understand your dilemma and frustration that the other parents don't so much as make a phone call and ask.  They shouldn't be disappearing for a weekend without making sure the kids are cared for, and you are not going to be the go-to person for this.  This is not an emergency.  You said "no".  You still feel guilty.  (((hugs)))

snowdragon

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2013, 11:37:20 PM »
You feel guilty because you know what can happen to a 14 year old and 12 year old left alone that often - and for that long.

Honestly is there someone at school you could mention this to?  this sounds like neglect.

doodlemor

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2013, 12:07:39 AM »
You feel guilty because you know what can happen to a 14 year old and 12 year old left alone that often - and for that long.

Honestly is there someone at school you could mention this to?  this sounds like neglect.

POD

If the school knows about the erratic situation they can keep an eye on it, and are mandated reporters.

kudeebee

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2013, 02:59:13 AM »
Not sure why you feel guilty.  You have the right to say no--the other kids are not your responsibility.  I would wonder since no parent contacted you if the parents were even gone out of town.  Next time I would not say yes unless a parent contacted me and not on the day of, unless an emergency.

It is okay to say no.  Your family comes first and your responsibility is to raising your kids, not someone else's.

I would start saying no to these last minute requests.  The other kids have learned that you are an easy sell and will say yes, no matter what, even last minute.  Glad you broke away from that this weekend.

Also, what did dd think you were going to do with the girlfriend if she (dd) was gone?

*inviteseller

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2013, 09:43:10 AM »
There is always that one family in the neighborhood who takes the "it takes a village" mentality to a whole new level.  You don't have to say yes to the other families plans.  Maybe you could sit down with the girl and gently ask why they are asking to spend these nights with you when the parents aren't asking.  There may be something going on at the house that the kids just don't want to be there.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: I said No! (but now I feel guilty and rude)
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2013, 04:59:31 PM »
I think you should have talked this over with Hannah herself rather than passing it through your daughter, maybe explaining to her that though you love to have them over this isn't always possible. We needs to understand that she needs to talk to you but preferably one of her parents, if she wants to stay.