Do You Mind If the Neighborhood Kids Hang Out in Your House?
April 18, 2012
West Orange, NJ
Growing up, my aunt's house used to be the hang out house. Now that I'm an adult with my own home, I don't know how in the world she did it. I don't like too many kids in my house. One or two with their parents permission is OK, but a bunch of random kids is too much for my nerves.
How do you feel about it?
EDIT: I'm talking about inside. Outside, I don't care. Usually when we're outside the other kids come out because we're always doing something. The kids next door help me garden and helped us build our shed, but the party can't move indoors! Maybe it's because of the age my kids are 3 and 6 so that's the age group I'm dealing with. Maybe it'll change when they get older. I'm not a curmudgeon...I swear! lol
I don't like to have kids inside my house. I don't mind them in the yard at all.
I used to play at my friends houses when I was young, but we were quieter back then. Kids were still "seen and not heard" We'd go to my friends room and talk quietly or go outside. We didn't annoy the parents the way kids do now! Now there is no seperation. Kids treat grownups like peers. Wow, I sound really old! I'm only 42. But things have changed in the last 40 yrs.
My 15-year-old recently brought 30 kids home "because I knew you wouldn't mind mom." We live in a tiny row house mind you and it was freezing outside. There were kids stacked three deep on the sofa and all over the floor. They even cleaned up after themselves, very impressive.
I am a very private person and crave peace and quiet, but I admit I loved the fact that she felt so confident I would be welcoming. I have always wanted to be the house everyone hung out at, and I guess I finally made it. That said, just between you, me and the fence post, it does drive me a little nuts. But at least I know where she is and what she's up to!
We have a neighborhood of elderly people mostly, so not many kids, but there is one that comes over all the time. I used to think she was annoying, but then I saw her Dad physically abusing her and screaming at her. Then I found out that her Mom told her not to tell anybody about it. When I realized what situation she was in, I made sure she knew that my house was a safe place for her. Doesn't bother me so much now. ;)
My parents had the coolest house in town for a reason - to keep their eyes on us. Growing up, we had an indoor pool, a huge trampoline, ATVs, ping pong table, one of the first Apple computers, Atari, bikes, etc. My parents knew where we were and new what we were doing. They asked me later, "You didn't think it was just by chance that we had the home all of your friends wanted to go to, did you?"
I am doing the same thing now for my kids. Get an area where they can have fun and you can keep on eye on them, but they aren't on top of you.
One of our daughters has a neighborhood where the kids, and moms too, get together and the rule is all stay outside. I think that's a good rule and works for everyone. Nobody has injuries in one house or anything broken and nobody gets tired of all the kids inside. It's sad about Nikki G having this child though who needs a 'safe' place but you could let her know you are there and care even outside maybe. Just my thoughts.
Usually I like it. I love to see my kids playing and I'm at work all week so want to be around them when I'm home. I also like to see how other kids act, how mine act etc. Only time it gets on my nerves is with certain kids who always are at our house bc their parents refuse to host. So then I'm really annoyed with the parents vs the kids... Random kids might bug me but eventually they don't become random kids. You get to know them. If a child is rude too, I point it out to my kids later to teach them not to do that at other people's houses. I always kind of hated having friends over my house when I was little. My parents were a bit "square" so I'd be so nervous someone would say something wrong. I don't want my kids to feel like that.
I love it! When it gets to be too much noise and/or active play I send them to the backyard though. I like getting to know who my kids are friends with and seeing how they interact. Group play is vastly different from one-on-one play. I also get to see another side of my kids. I hope my house is the hang out house when the kids get older :)
growing up, our home was the gathering place. I was always sooooo thankful that my parents were cool with that. Whether it was at our home in the city or our wkend lake house, we always had company on the wkends (for the whole family) & extra kids/friends for us. Loved that freedom! & even as a child, I appreciated how challenging it could be for my mom who worked full-time.
Fast-forward to my older son's childhood...he had friends in/out & overnight on the wkends. By teen years, he really pulled away from us...& even now, I consider it his loss. He could have had so much more.
By contrast, my younger son embraces our company. He has friends in/out, & we hope as his teen years continue....that he'll feel comfortable bringing his friends here. To aid in that, we have a fire ring in the backyard & a pool table downstairs. We also let him set up the tent regularly...in our yard, at friends' houses....& this summer, we'll let him hit the park.
My uncle took it even further, & totally renovated his lower level to accommodate teens. Big screen tvs, game systems, & arcade games at the ready for his son's teen years. He didn't like how his daughter's teen years went - exposed to too many things at other homes.....& they decided to provide what they could to better enhance the chances of keeping their son on the straight & narrow.
Soooo, in response to your question: no, I love having extra kids. To play, for mealtime, & overnight. My parents taught me well! & honestly, I see a huge difference in my sons' years....& I will do what I can to provide a known safe zone!
I already have four of my own so a few extras really don't add any extra chaos to the mix. However, on days when I'm in a mood (today would be one) I make them play outside instead of hanging around inside. There are also strict limits on where they can go in the house. No bedrooms allowed. They pretty much stay in the play room or living room.
There aren't a lot of kids in our neighborhood, either, and most of them you never see the parents. I sort of know the mom of one of the boys; I've never seen a parent or grandparent for the rest. However, I make a point of getting to know the kids who come over. The first time they come over, I talk to them for awhile (some of them don't know what to make of this--others seem to like the fact that an adult is actually speaking to them like a human being). I also make sure to tell them the rules for our home, and I stay nearby (not hovering, just within earshot) while they're over because I've got younger kids and want to make sure the older kids avoid cussing or saying/doing other things that I don't need my three year old picking up. So far, they have always been respectful of the younger children and me, and I think on the whole I'd rather have it this way than have my kids wandering around unsupervised (which they would be anywhere else).
We usually didn't have huge numbers but when the kids wanted to bring friends home while roaming the neighborhood, they usually could. We just had rules like what time they had to go home or how many could be on the trampoline. If it wasn't a good time, then we were upfront that it wasn't a good time for a crowd.
Now, that said, it's still up to YOU. If you only want a few kids over, let your kids know that. Or say they can play outside, but nobody inside or whatever.
Three and six? Yeah....I wouldn't want a herd of them in the house and be the only adult, either! I'd limit the # inside. For your sanity. It's better when they are older.
Well, there's a world of difference between a house full of little boys and a house full of little girls. I only have girls so I don't mind if a couple kids come to our house. Our house is tiny so we don't have room for more than a couple. And I don't have a problem telling them when it's time to leave either. I'd rather the neighbor kids come over than to hear "I'm bored!" all afternoon!
Honestly, it doesn't bother me unless they are making a mess.
But we have never had many kids in our neighborhood, so I always encouraged the few that came around.
Hopefully you can find some kind of balance. I wouldn't want my house overrun every day but I do value being able to keep an eye on things :)
It depends upon the age and energy level and activity.
I don't mind it at all if the kids are totally potty trained and do not need my assistance with any bathroom breaks. And I do not allow any kind of throwing or tossing. That rule is spoken loud and clear when each child enters the house and they are asked to leave if throwing things starts. And if it's an impromptu thing with neighbor kids I do not serve snacks. Not even water. Which I find that rule very hard to enforce with the singleton kids, as they are used to asking a parent for everything and they are also used to having the parent respond, i.e. do too much for them. So those kids learn rather quickly that I am not there to serve them. Go Play. If you are hungry or thirsty, please go home.
when my kids were little, my house was the hang out house, inside and out. I really loved it, until some of the parents came to expect it. I also used to have parties for the neighborhood kids too, Christmas, Halloween, whatever, anything for a party!! We used to go all out, but when the parents just started dropping their kids off, yep, I stopped and just invited who I wanted. As for a bunch of kids inside the house, you really have to just look them in the eye, and tell them what the rules are. If they break them, I always would get really stern and look them in the eye and say "do you want to continue to come over here? Then explain to me again what my rules are" Then I'd usually have a calm place, if not, those particular kids couldn't come inside anymore. Now that my kids are in high school, man, I almost DONT want them to come over. They eat all my food, make a mess, are loud, and I guess I'm not as strict anymore, but they have fun anyway. I guess you only live once!!
When my kids want to spend time with friends, I prefer they hang out at my house. Does it happen daily? No, maybe one or twice a week at this time. Honestly, no one watches kids as well as I do. I supervise as well as keep them busy. I get very anxious when I send my kids to someone else's house (happens rarely), especially since my kids are young and need supervision. I had a situation last year where I sent my 6 year old son to his friend's house. The mom actually told me that she left the kids alone in the house and went outside to read her book...WTH???? I would never leave kids unsupervised. Grant you, I don't hover over them, I give them freedom, but I like to know what's going on.
Would rather my kids and their riends be in my house than anywhere else. So I can see what they are up to :) So my place has always been the place to hang out. And I have teenagers and toddlers :) But it really does not bug me if there is a bunch of noise inside -- it just does not register with me. So I think that is the difference :)
We have my sons friend and his sibling that will come over and my daughter has a friend so we usually have 5 at the most at our house, which is PLENTY. My kids are 12 and 9 and I would rather have them hanging at our house than running around the neighborhood or at other peoples houses. We experienced a couple issues when they were over at friend's houses so I would rather have them here were I can keep an eye on them. But if there is more than 5 total, that's too much for me.
I want to have the neighborhood hang out house, but I sooo can't handle it ( internally at least, I hope i dont outwardly cringe) i can't even handle the yard, I"m to worried they will get hurt or run over or some crazy accident will happen to someone else kid on my property.
My kids are young and we live out in the country where you drive to your neighbors :) but my oldest is just now wanting to have his friends over. I love it!! His 2 best friends are a boy/girl twins and he always invites another little girl so the twin isn't the only girl around. Those are the kiddos we have over most often. I hope he continues to want his friends at our place and we are trying to make our home "kid friendly" so they do want to hang out.
I know my situation is different b/c they are not just neighbor kids, but friends.
i love that my house is the neighborhood hang out....one day there were 6 boys 10 and under in my house and we had a blast with nerf guns. i would much rather the kids are here....that way i can hear and see what they are doing and saying. i also get a chance to know the kids too!!
Apparently our house is now the hang house.
The kids play outside, then come in for some xBox, then back outside.
I keep lots of snacks & drinks & "quick" dinner stuff like pizza, chicken, etc because someone ALWAYS wants to stay for lunch or dinner.
When they're inside, they're usually downstairs, so it doesn't bother me.
I used to not mind it but the boys got very rowdy and loud......so not anymore. My son kept having to tell them to settle down ( he knew it was bothering me ) but it didn't work. The last straw was when 2 of his friends were over, they played chase INSIDE MY HOUSE , after being told not to do that, and they slammed doors after each room they ran into. I felt like they totally disrespected our home so I politely asked them to leave and I've never allowed them back in.
I don't mind one friend over at a time but not more than that, and they have to either play in the yard or in my son's room; no more of this 'hanging' out in my living room and wandering around my house like before. It also got to the point where I felt like the parents were sending their boys over to our house for hours at a time, it happened everyday. I'm thinking I was the free babysitter, thats how I felt. So no more sista! :))
I am play date central, with my kids and their friends.
But when it comes to neighbors and their kids, I like my privacy.... and my circle of space.
I do not like, drop-ins or what not.
Not at all.
I like being able to be in my own home or yard or driveway, without always having the anticipation that at any second, our house will be swarmed with neighbor kids and their parents.
So, I keep my distance. And I like it that way.
And my kids too, like it that way.
There were a couple of kids on our street that would just pop by any time and anytime my kids were outside they would come. Unannounced. My kids, then dreaded going outside ever. They want to be at home, whether outside or inside, having their own privacy and activity.
I don't want them in my house. It is not always picked up enough for company. But my son is always going outside and playing with them but is only allowed in one house at the moment. But we litaraly share a yard with them. And when he's over there they have their front door open.
I love to be the hang out house. We have always had different groups of kids in and out, and quite a few, since my sons are only a year apart there is an overlap of friends. I have never minded it, and was always happy when they were here because it meant my kids were here. Now that they are teens, I am really happy they like to come here. Granted, I have to brace myself to see the kitchen after everyone has their snack, or in the case of teen boys, entire meals, lol! The funniest incident was when my boys were about 12 or so, and a gang of them all came in and went down in the basement to play. One kid came in with them who I had never seen before, but he was just part of the group so down he went with them. Later after he went home I asked the kids who he was. NONE of them knew him and thought he was with one of the others. We never saw him again but it was just hilarious that he came in played with them all and no one questioned it!
We don't have to many kids that are my kids age, but before our next door neighbor moved their kids use to hang out at our house all the time. There were five of them and it was before we had kids of our own so it was good practice lol.
It does get easier as they get older. I only provide supervision to be sure no one gets hurt, I don't "entertain". The bonus is this, you get to know all the kids and can see who you are ok with your kids hanging out with. You'll know what they are doing, what they are into.
My son is very social (age 8) and he is always inviting the neighbor kids over. Usually they end up in the yard playing on the trampoline. But sometimes they all play inside...hide and seek or something. Honestly, I love it. It's a large age range though - so the bigger kids tend to police the younger kids. I don't have to do much of that. I make them all a yummy snack and talk to the kids while they eat it. Sometimes they get too wild and I just kick them out to play (in a friendly way). I have a 2.5 year old also - so my problem is she wants to do everything the big kids do and of course she cannot yet. This makes her upset. Anyway, I really like it because I have gotten to know everyone so well. I think if you have 3 year olds coming over...that would be hard. They need adult supervision when playing and still are learning to handle their own emotions. Play dates with other kids were usually difficult for my son when he was 3. He was still learning to share and take turns.
I HATE the noise and running around. Mine is 6. It is fine when they are outside. I don't even have a clue how people handle having more than one of their own in the house at a time. I love to entertain for adults. But kids - not at all.
I loved it. However, I noticed that my son would 'wait' outside of his friends homes --then I put a stop to whoever that boy was from coming inside and I would tell my son to tell the child that, "My mama will not let any one in unless I too can go inside their home". I know its petty--but it pissed me off!
Growing up, my friends and I took turn visiting each other. My parents even gave us lunch! They were really okay. My mom said it is better to know with whom her children hang out with, so she can monitor. My friends are always nice, but once she found out my brother's friend asked my innocent brother to gamble, she gave them lecture but she still kind to that boy. She is a cool and fun mom, kind of person you can talk to, but also treat other kids just like hers( including lecture and discipline).
She told me it is better if she still can see us. House is messy is okay. How if the house is clean, but the kids hang out to the clubs, bars or porns? Don't you think dealing with drug user child or 16 pregnant girl won't give you more headache? I think my mom's logic is very good.
We're becoming the hang out house, kids are 8 & 10 and friends range in age from 5 to 13. For the most part I don't mind it. I don't feed them unless we've specifically invited them over, if the hordes descend there is no food, lol. I do pitchers of water and glasses but have learned not to have treats/juice boxes/gatorade etc in the garage fridge because they will empty it frighteningly fast. Most of the time they are outside because we have a fort and basketball hoop and are the only house on the block with a steep driveway so they like to skate down it. But they sometimes come in to play xbox or barbies. As long as they are polite and clean up after themselves I'm ok with it. I'm not a real social person, and I'm not a hover mom, but I do like to know who my kids hang out with so even though I would prefer peace and quiet I've adjusted to the chaos the hordes bring.