Neighbors' kids come over EVERYDAY. Is this common in the States?

United States
July 7, 2007 3:31pm CST
We have some relatively new neighbors move in on our cul-de-sac. They have 2 older kids (4 & 9). Mine is 2. They like to come over and play with my kid all the time. I really don't mind as they play really well with my son and they are nice children. But lately, they have been coming EVERYDAY! I have had to send them home a few times because they were eating into our family time. What kind of parents allow their children to go to a neighbor's house everyday and stay as long as they want? Is this common in the States? Where I come from, it's not. And if we want to go some place, we had to call ahead to get permission, etc. In this case, the parents never call. The kids just come at all times of the day and ring the doorbell. I like these kids but hey...I don't run a free babysitting service, you know. Once, I even caught the kids playing in our yard with all my son's toys while we were away!! I know that cos' when I came home, all my son's toys were scattered everywhere. I told the kids they can't come over and play if we are not home. I also mentioned it to the parents. I think it's rude for these parents to keep doing this to us everyday. I feel bad about sending these kids home. I've even suggested to the parents that maybe they only come over a few times a week but that seemed to have fallen on deaf ears. Am I being petty? Should I even be concerned or say anything else to these parents?
2 people like this
8 responses
@jillhill (37358)
• United States
7 Jul 07
I always had kids at my house. And now that my own are grown, their friends still call me mom. When I would bake cookies they would be waiting outside for them to come out of the oven. I was always glad that they were all here instead of my trying to find my kids. I did however have a couple that did think that this was their second home. And when my son and his friends became older they ate alot. So I did have to talk to one set of parents. They dropped off their son and he didn't go home for four days! I told his parents the same thing. If I wanted more kids I would have had them. I also set aside a part of my freezer for the family and one for the friends...that worked better. I also was a girl scout leader. Sometimes I would have to sit with little girls while there parents were up to an hour late picking them up. Boy did I have words for them. It sounds like you have some neighbors that are using your house and you for a babysitting service. You are not being petty!
• United States
8 Jul 07
That's why I feel if I don't take control of the situation early and keep it at an acceptable level, it's just going to escalade and they will end up staying at our place for days like what happened to you!!!! hahaha.
• United States
7 Jul 07
I don't think it's common, but it does happen. My sons have friends that come over without the parents ever letting me know. Then we have others that always call. If they do come everyday I do tell them that the boys can't have company over that the boys will let them know when they can come over. It has worked for me since their fried now only come over when they are invited. I don't believe your being petty it does get old really quick. If they parents aren't listening don't even bother telling them.
• United States
8 Jul 07
I just think it's common courtesy to at least just call, you know. That's why I'm just dealing directly with the kids now. Being 4 and 9, I think they are old enough to understand what I'm telling them like when they can come over, when not to come, what we expect of them when they are at our place, etc.
• United States
8 Jul 07
When I was little (probably about 8) I would go over to a 3yr olds house to watch him/play with him. His friend who was 4 would also play with us on some days. Funny - even at 21 I can remember their names, Garret and Logan. Anyway - The mother knew I was responsible and would rather the boys play outside with me watching them than on their own. That being said - I always knocked on the door to let her know I was there and made sure it was ok to play. I never played at her place when she was not there and always with the boys, not with their toys but without them. This was more of me watching the boys for free than her watching me. In your case I would say something and talk to the kids as well. If anything let them know that while at your house they follow your rules and if they do not respect your house that they will not be welcome in the future.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
The 4 year old is the one that comes over a lot these days. Today, he came over 4 times and I had to send him home cos' we were busy. I told him I will call his mom when my son is ready to play but he just kept coming. This morning, he came at 9am, dressed in his pajamas! In your case, it's a little different but in my case, if he's here, I have to watch over them both as they are only 2 and 4.
• India
8 Jul 07
Children playing together is a good activity and will also increase the personal touch with the neighbours. But all this kids should be always monitored and must be allowed to play for a fixed time frame. It must not be the case, as told by you....
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
Yes, I really like them playing with my son. But I am afraid also for these kids cos' their parents don't seem to care where they go, when they go or how long they stay out. As a result, they just come over all the time and I feel bad having to turn them away so much. I've suggested to the parents maybe to only allow the kids to come over 2 or 3 times a week but so far, no luck.
@tinamwhite (3255)
• United States
8 Jul 07
I do not think that you are being petty...it sounds like these children are happier at your house...maybe their are a few parenting skills lacking besides just teaching common courteousy... When my grown children were younger, they were allowed to go to their friends but were also required to check in at a minimum of 1 hour intervals....and that was true from 10 to 16 when they were able to go alittle longer without calling me or coming home to check in... I had the house in the neighborhood that all of the kids hung out at....my 3 children were all within 3 yrs of each other so it was always a houseful...LOL
• United States
9 Jul 07
Just 2 days ago, the little one came over and asked to play with my son. I asked him if his mom knew he was here. He said yes. But he's only 4 so I called his mom (since she never takes the trouble to call me!!) and asked if she knew he was at our place and she said yes. So, I let him stay. He stayed for 3 hours before I finally sent him home because he was hungry. During this time, he did not have to check in nor did either of his parent come over (we only live 2 doors away!) or called. What troubles me most is that they are such new neighbors. We've only talked a couple of times outside the house. The parents have not even step foot into our house. In fact, they have not even met my husband!! And they are just assuming we are good people (thank God we are) and not some monsters preying on their children. I just think they are too trusting..or maybe naive.
@lucy02 (5018)
• United States
8 Jul 07
No you're not being petty. I would be plenty fed up by now. I think that I would tell them to go home and stay home. Well, I probably wouldn't either but I sure would want to. I think you are going to have to say something to the parents or just tell the kids you are busy and it's not a good time until they quit coming over.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
I know. I hate having to say no to them all the time though. I had to turn away the little one 3 times today.
• United States
8 Jul 07
I am a parent too. My kids are 28 and 25 and i got experience is this problem.I think you can ask them for the e-mail adresse and send them your discussion and all the answers you will get. They may get the point.
@quatelmon (957)
• United States
7 Jul 07
I do not think you are being petty at all! I would prefer for my kids and their friends to stay at my house, but I would talk to their parents and just nicely ask if they call before the kids come over. Just say it nicely and tell them you don't mind that they're over, but sometimes you're busy and don't want to be responsible for their well being if you are not paying full attention to them. Good Luck!!!
1 person likes this