January 17, 2013,
M.M. asks from Chicago, IL on January 15, 2013
I Am Weirded About This playdate...What Can It Be?
Hi Moms, here is the story: I got an e-mail from a Mom in my son's class who said that her son is new to the school and that he has been asking to get together with my son for one afternoon. I figured, fine, why not, a new friend? So, I e-mailed this Mom back that I would be delighted to meet her and her boy. I then, asked my son if there is a new boy in class. He said, yes, but he also said that the boy is not his friend, he never plays with him, and even mentioned that the kid is "stupid". Anyway, I got the perseption that the boys are not on friendly terms, and my son wants nothing to do with this boy. I did not tell my son that I arranged the playdate for him and this boy but I am thinking about the motives of that other Mom and whether we should try a playdate or cancell under some pretence? My son has a regular group of buddies, he is socialy well adjusted, the teacher never mentioned anything about his behaviour except superlatives. I never seen this child of his mother, so I cannot substantiate this "negative" reaction my son is having to this boy. Should I try to observe the kid informaly, first? What to do about this play date invitation?
ADDED: I am usually very welcoming to all the parents and I have my contact info on the school rooster so it was perfectly OK for this Mom to contact me. Actually, the kids already had an "informal play date", according to my son, he ran into this boy at the playground while he was with the sitter (she has no clue, I asked) and they ended up calling each other names, no nice play happened, so I gather it did not go well. I do not know whether the other boy was there with his Mom or with his sitter. If he was with Mom - she would know that the kids are not friendly, so it means she is not telling me the truth, if he was with a sitter - Mom may have no clue that the boys are not friendly. Do you think another play date with Mothers may go better? Anyway, I think that I should have a chat with my boy about proper manners and we both shall try to welcome this new family to our community. I always like to meet new people.
X.O. answers from Chicago on January 15, 2013
Would the playdate be at their home, or a neutral location? You might want to try a bounce house or something. Even boys who dont typically get along seem to do well at those types of places--it is a good ice breaker. Maybe invite another friend along too, but not his whole possee, if it is ok with the other mom.
3 moms found this helpful
J.K. answers from Kansas City on January 15, 2013
I think that you should try it. You never know, maybe the boy is struggling for friendship and he doesn't know how to act, and his mom is just trying to help him to make friends. If they don't get along, you don't have to do it again. But you might make another good friend out of it.
2 moms found this helpful
B.. answers from Dallas on January 15, 2013
I would be more concerned with my child being so cavalier about calling another child "stupid." Actually, your child sounds a rude, mean, snob. Why would you allow him to ostracize the new kid? Did you do anything at all, about him calling someone stupid?
Keep the play date, and teach him how to be kind and welcoming to other children. It sounds like your kid is just purposefully trying to leave a new child out. This is on him, teach him a lesson...or he will turn into a bully.
19 moms found this helpful
☆.A. answers from Pittsburgh on January 15, 2013
I'd be pretty upset if my son described a classmate as "stupid"!
I don't see the big deal about a 2 hour meet up.
19 moms found this helpful
A.W. answers from Kalamazoo on January 15, 2013
Ditto One and Done.
Your son called or referred to another kids as "stupid" and you're worried about the other kid?!?!?
They are probably not on friendly terms because this kid is NEW! Hence the other mom trying to reach out and help her son make new friends!
16 moms found this helpful
G.H. answers from Chicago on January 15, 2013
First, I would NEVER allow my kids to call anyone stupid.
Second, I averaged 3 schools a year, so I was always the *NEW* kid. It's hard to make friends and I was always appreciative when people were kind to me and made me feel welcomed.
I suggest you have a talk with your boy about being kind and friendly. This poor mom just wants her son to fit in, not be ostracized by some little punk and his buddies.
16 moms found this helpful
M.P. answers from Raleigh on January 15, 2013
Some of these responses actually shock me. Maybe I'm part of the few that feel sorry for this other kid?
Maybe he is shy and his mother is trying to help him branch out? He is new after all- that can't be easy. Maybe her son really likes your son and mentioned it to her?
Regardless, I don't think it's acceptable behavior to have a child call another child stupid. It's just plain rude and mean. If it were my kid, I'd make him go on the play date to teach him a lesson. It's a couple of hours. He's not signing a lifelong contract. For shame.
16 moms found this helpful
S.A. answers from Chicago on January 15, 2013
I think the mom's only "motives" are to help her son make friends at his new school. I don't see anything weird about that.
I would tell your son that it's not nice to call someone stupid. I would tell him that you have set up a short play date and he is to treat the other boy nicely, the way he would want to be treated. And then if he doesn't want to do another one, he doesn't have to.
Maybe he will end up getting to know this boy more and want to play with him at school. Who knows?
Consider it your good deed for the week.
13 moms found this helpful
V.W. answers from Jacksonville on January 15, 2013
What is missing from your post is what you said to your son about him calling the new boy "stupid", and what he had to say when you asked him about why he never plays with the boy.
My children have ALWAYS been told to try to include new kids. That it is hard to make new friends at a new school and to think about how they would feel if THEY were the new kid who didn't know anybody (and they have BEEN the new kid, so they DO know).
I do not see anywhere, where you attempted to tease out what went wrong at the playground. They called each other names? Ok.... why? Who started it? Was your son not nice to him at the playground and the boy called him out on being "mean" and your son called him "stupid"? (I'm just throwing that out as an example of what you don't know.... or didn't share...).
I would suggest that you keep the playdate. But I would also suggest that you have a talk with your son about how to include new kids and to be nice to them. And then a reminder chat the day of the play date as well.
It is one thing to have a new kid join the class and they just don't meld with your child and they don't become close friends. But it is something else entirely when the new kid is called "stupid" simply for trying to make friends(?).... What other reason could there be? Can you think of any valid reason for your son to call the boy "stupid"? I can't.
12 moms found this helpful
S.J. answers from St. Louis on January 16, 2013
I am hoping you posted a separate question about how to teach your son not to call people names such as "stupid". That would be my first concern. My son would be punished for such behavior. Actually,my son wouldn't talk about someone in that manner.
I don't see what your issue is. Are you concerned that your son and her little guy won't have fun? If yes, then I don't even know what to say other than I wish I had your problems! Her "motive" is probably to help her "stupid" son feel more accepted.
Go on the playdate and try to be welcoming of this new family. Short of them giving you murderer vibes, you and your son should do all you can to make them feel comfortable. Your son will learn from your example. And please don't let your son call him stupid to his face. If he is willing to tell you the kid is stupid, chances are he is willing to tell others, too.
ps - pretense, cancel and perception.
9 moms found this helpful