13 answers

My Daughter's Friend Has Tried to "Steal" Things from Us.

My daughter's friend has been to our home on a few different occasions and I find myself very uneasy about the visits. She puts little toys in her pockets and my daughter has caught her, on a few different occasions, and asked her to take them out of her pocket and return them.. But the other day she was here and I was looking for her and found her upstairs, alone, while the birthday party was going on outside. Her mother didn't even say come down once we found her but the daughter had opened my "closed" door. I simply asked her to come down and join us outside.

But she may get the idea it is okay to take things because one time she was here and she took a little tiny wooden angel doll. It was just pennies really but my daughter played with it on occasion. So I asked her to give it back and she flew into a tantrum. Because the mom seemed confused at me asking for my daughter's angel back and seemed exasperated at her child's behavior, I told the mom to just return it to me later after the child had calmed down. Mom never did return it to me. I never asked.

It wasn't the item and obviously not the worth of it. I simply felt that when her mom did nothing, it was setting a precedent that it is okay to take things from other people, no matter how small.

But I am uneasy now and almost feel like I need to watch the child. The mother seems not to watch her when she is here. Would you encourage this friendship or what would you do? Thanks.

Update: The child was 4 when this was happening and both my daughter and her just turned 5. My daughter does not like it when it happens but she does not hold a grudge either since she lives in the moment for the most part. When I knew she was coming over, I felt compelled to hide a lot of the 'small' toys that fit into her pockets. Sad... And no, the mother is very passive when it comes to her child as in "My child does no wrong." kind of attitude.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I won't have the child back in my home. Although my child lives in the moment, doesn't hold a grudge and simply asks the child to "give back what she put in her pockets", the problem has continued. Further, when the child went upstairs, without permission, and my bedroom door was opened, it's just a bit weird. But I feel like I have to both keep an eye on the girl because the mother "literally" does not and put small "more expensive" toys away.

Should any future playdates be planned, they will be at a neutral location.


Featured Answers

I wouldn't invite "sticky fingers" over anymore nor her mom. Again, here is another example of lazy parenting.

1 mom found this helpful

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Find another playmate for your child. The mother of the other child seems like she is setting a bad example. I also think you should have asked for the toy that was taken, since it's still bothering you.


2 moms found this helpful

i'd not invite the girl back. i'm sure that she is a very sweet loving good child, but the fact that the mother is not teaching her to not take things that dont belong to her is not good. having her over may make your daughter pick up the habit. while i think it is normal for kids who are very young, maybe 6 or younger to not realize they are stealing they just see something they like and want and may not know not to take it. it is up to us as the parents to teach our own children not to take things from others. poor little girl needs to be taught. i'd just lessen her time at your house.

2 moms found this helpful

The mother seemed confused when you asked her to give back something that she took that didn't belong to her? There's the problem - the mother allows her daughter to do this stuff.

There is no way that this girl will stop stealing while she has a parent who condones it.

You should not let the girl come to your house anymore. When the mother asks why, tell her that her daughter takes things from you and your daughter. Today it may be inexpensive items, but in the future she will be taking important things, expensive things, and it will balloon into shoplifting. Tell her that if she doesn't start working on this with her daughter, that she could end up with a juvie record and worse.

Someone needs to say this to this woman. I hope you have the courage to do it. I know it's hard, but you would possibly be helping this child's future.


2 moms found this helpful

This is not good and needs to stop---yesterday.

1 mom found this helpful

This is real easy.
Don't invite the child to your home anymore.

1 mom found this helpful

I would either make it clear to the parent and the child that she is pocketing your items and if you ever find her to do that again, she will not be welcome in your home. OR, I would cut off contact and encourage your daughter to make more wholesome, healthy friends. If the mom is going to be a weenie about it and not stand up to her daughter, you can't do much--she won't back you up. GL


1 mom found this helpful

It would help a lot to know this child's age and how long she's been your daughter's friend, and how close your daughter really feels to her (or not). It's also not clear if the mother is a friend to you or just a "play date mom" whom you know only because your daughers get together occasionally.

If this girl is not in school yet, this can be put down as something she might outgrow, and something you can call her on easily ("Hey, I don't see Sally's doll here -- did you maybe pick it up by accident?" etc.) I have heard here on Mamapedia about moms who end up having kids turn out their pockets at the end of play dates, sadly.

But if she's older (maybe over 6?) this calls for a decision on your part -- Do you let your child continue to play with her? Well, you have only one firm example that the girl stole but also the other cases where she put things into her pockets. Not acceptable, of course, but it sounds like the mom may not back you up. If your daughter does like her otherwise, and there are no other issues with the girl besides her light fingers (in other words, if she's fine other than this one thing), I would have play dates with her but would always limit them to a neutral place -- the park; the bowling alley; the mini-golf course; outside in your yard only; etc.

I'm afraid you missed the boat when you didn't press the mother at least one time about getting back that wooden figure; the mother clearly needs to be pushed to take control of this problem. But that point is past now, and so I'd either direct my daughter to playing with other kids you trust more, and/or limiting play dates to somewhere not inside your house.

1 mom found this helpful

This would not be the type of child I would want to have any contact with. Why do want to have this other child near yours? It makes no sense. You are teaching your child proper way to act. Your child witnessing this type of behavior from the other child. Is this the type of negative behavior you want your daughter to repeat??
The other mom for whatever reason is not doing anything. Which is a shame. Don't let her lack of discipline effect your child. At 2 yrs old kids know better not to steal. I would cease all conact with this mom and other child..there is nothing positive about this relationship.

1 mom found this helpful

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