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Wedding Woes

The other kid incident this weekend

Sunday we went to a park to go fishing.  It's right in the middle of neighborhoods so very walkable/bikable, but there are no houses that could see the ponds.  This boy about 7 rode up on a bike and was hanging out with us trying to fish. 

I admit my patience was thin.  We had just had the head injury the night before and I really don't care for fishing.  I go because everyone else likes it.

The kid was taking the fishing pole out of Max's hands and trying to cast.  He almost caught Max with a hook.  So I made a rule only grown ups could cast (Max can't really cast anyway).  This happens a few times and I tell them no.

At one point Max tried to cast and almost caught the kid with a hook.  The kid looks at me and says "what's the big deal? I didn't get hurt."

me: the big deal is I said no kids could cast. That's the rule.  I don't know you and I don't want you to get hurt.

Him: My name is Marcos. Now you know me.

me: I don't know you. I don't know your parents. I have no way of knowing how to get help if you get hurt.  You can stay and follow the rules or you can leave.

WTF? He was with us for a solid 30 minutes plus.  Maybe I'm a helicopter parent, but I wouldn't let M2, also 7, just ride off for 30 mins without a destination or someone else with her.  also, WTF at the kid talking back to me.  I already hate fishing and the little shit made it worse.

Re: The other kid incident this weekend

  • CharmedPamCharmedPam Chicagoburbs member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    I see kids riding bikes in my area too, that age. I think, anyway.  I'm horrible at guessing ages.  I always wonder about the parents though.  Like, maybe in the 70's you could be alone in your 'hood but not in 2018. 

  • 6fsn6fsn member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    I’m guessing age based on my 5, 7, 9 yo. I let my 7 and 9 yo go alone with a destination. For one house that’s further I need to know the parents are home and they let me know the kids arrived. Immediate neighbors they can go and just come back if nobody is home. 
  • I was a very shy and unsure child.  I as super deferential to adults at that age.  Then again, I wouldn't have even gone over to join your all's family anyway.

    I had a weird incident a few years ago.  I had just gotten home and was getting out of my car.  Two kids came over to me...probably 8 and 10, something like that.  And asked if I would give them a ride home!  I had never seen these children before in my life, much less knew who their parents were.  I politely told them, "No, I'm sorry, I'm not comfortable giving children a ride home if I don't know their parents.  They asked me, "Why?"  And I further explained that their parents would probably be upset if a stranger gave them a ride home.

    Looking back, I wish I had offered to call their house and let a parent know they were looking for a ride home.  And asking STRANGERS for one.  But, I was just so surprised, I didn't think of doing that until later.

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  • Ro041Ro041 member
    Seventh Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    We had an incident like that at Oktoberfest last year where we were playing bags (cornhole, whatever you call it where you live) and this kid (similar age) interrupted our game and kept playing with us for over 30 minutes.  We didn't even have any kids with us but this kid kept running in the middle of the game and trying to swat the bags out of the air.  I asked him where his parents were and he pointed to a table 2 tents away at the far end (maybe 50 yards).  The parents NEVER checked on him or really even looked in his direction.  I finally got fed up and went and told the parents that they really should be keeping a closer eye on him and I didn't feel like babysitting him anymore.  They got PISSED at me.

  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya mod
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its

    Ugh, 6, WTF?!

    A very similar situation happened to my friend this weekend. It's a vacation trailer park. There's kids everywhere and a lot the parents just hang out and get drunk. My friend has a 5 and 7 year old. There's this one older girl, maybe 10 who likes to hang out with them, but her parents are so irresponsible that she won't let her. Last year, the girl was with her kids for a bit at the beach, then she wasn't. Eventually the mom realized she didn't know where her kid was and yelled at my friend because "she was with your kids last, you were responsible for her". Um, no. So her girls can't play with her any more. On Saturday, the girl wanted to play. My friend told her that she's sorry, but we're about to have cake for their dad's birthday so the girls can't play. This kid leaves, then comes back and is still hanging around. Later we find out that she must have told her mom she was "invited to a birthday party" and came back. So the mom is mad at my friend AGAIN because she doesn't pay attention to her kid.

    I sat at the beach for nearly 4 hours on Saturday and watched probably 40 kids in the water, with maybe 5-8 parents actually actively paying attention. It was sad and terrifying.

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  • eileenrob said:
    Ugh I HATE when random kids come over and hang out with us.  It’s always elementary school age, like around the ages PP have mentioned.  They’re not drawn to us because of similarly aged kids (older DD turned 4 last week, twins will be 3 in July).  I guess by 7-10 they’re old enough that they’re allowed to stray a bit from their parents?  But young enough that they aren’t preteens or teens who don’t want to hang out with adults?  If the intruding kid is being friendly I’ll let him/her hang for about a half hour before encouraging them back to their parents.  If he/she is annoying it’s more like 5 minutes.  The first thing I always ask is “who are you here with?  Do they know you’re not with them?”.  

    I adore my own kids. I love my nieces and nephews.  I like my students.  I believe all children deserve lots of nutritious food, strong educations and terrific healthcare. But I’ll be damned if I’m an inadvertent, unpaid baby-sitter.  

    I'm the same way, not that it happens very often.  If a child is polite and acts like a little adult around me, it's fine and I'll talk to them largely like how I would have a polite conversation/interaction with an adult.  That's true, whether a child is a stranger or someone I know.

    It is funny though how kids can be so different.  "Stranger Danger" was strong with my mother and that was passed down to me.  I would NEVER randomly initiate a conversation with a stranger, even if my mom was right next to me.  I still don't randomly initiate conversations with strangers, unless I have a reason to, lol.  But now the reason is better expediency in my day.

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  • 6fsn6fsn member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    Max looooooves to talk to people. When the widow next door is doing yard work he’ll chat and pick up stuff and put it in her yard waste bag. The guy a few doors down hates kids but he’ll chat about fish with max for ages in our yard. 

    All the things that could happen just bug me- falling in a pond, falling off a bike, kidnap, older kid grooming, and all the things I can’t imagine. It’s just not something I’d be comfortable with.
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    At the age of 7, and this is a LONG time ago, my kids might ride from the top of a block to the bottom to get to a friends house.  They would need to call the minute they arrived. 

    A 7 year old alone at a pond/lake large enough to be stocked for fishing would be a hard "no". 

    I would be "mean" enough to not even share the fishing pole.  "If you want to fish, dear, why don't you ride home, get a pole, and come back with your folks?"

    When we take the grandkids to parks, the library, or even children's museums, we always seem to be magnets for kids.  The issue is that typically these kids are WITH ADULTS,  but the adults are ignoring them.  I will be reading aloud to the grandkids and suddenly find myself with 3 or 4 extra kids.  I will ignore for the most part, unless and until said kids start to interrupt or intrude.  I have no issue calmly but firmly disciplining in that case.  "Please stop interrupting.  Why don't you go get your own book?"  "We will pass this puzzle to you when we are finished but until then you need to keep your hands away." 

    We live across from the neighborhood park.  It has a pond that is stocked with fish.  Back in the day it was a bit more robust with kids, and most were without parents.  DD used to come home "with a strange kid" in tow, open the door, and say, "Look who I met, mom!"  More often than not, I would simply say, "You need to put her back, dear."  Twice, however, an older "tween/teen" would show up with her and afforded us a couple of awesome, new babysitters!  The park is used much less now :-(
  • Ugh this has happened to me a few times in the airport with my dog (yes, I'm one of those people...but in my defense, he's tiny, friendly, and doesn't shed). 

    One time, this young girl (probably about 4-5) walked over and asked to pet my dog. I asked where her parents were, and they were on the chairs not too far from us. I was sitting on the floor with my dog because I figure that's better than him on the chairs. I waved to her parents and asked if it was alright, then let her pet him for a little bit. Our flight ended up being delayed almost 2 hours and that girl did. not. leave. my. side. I kept saying (loud enough for her parents to hear) that "the puppy needs to rest" or "wanted to eat" or some other excuse, and they weren't picking up on my hints. I asked the girl, again loud enough, if she wanted to go read her book or play with whatever toy her parents had...again, nope. They were totally content to let this stranger babysit their kid for free. I would have gotten up and left the gate, but the flight kept being delayed in small increments of time and I didn't want to miss it.

    The other time, there was a dad & two young kids. They were playing with my dog at the first airport, we made small talk & discovered we were going to the same final destination. At our second destination, the dad asked me if I wouldn't mind watching his kids while he went to go get them all sandwiches. The kids were maybe 8-10ish, so old enough MAYBE but I was like um...sure...I mean the only qualifications I have are a small dog and the fact that we're both going to Milwaukee but yeah okay.

    I get that I don't look sketchy and small cuddly dogs are kid magnets but dang, parents. That would be a great setup to kidnap someone lol. 
  • MRDCleMRDCle member
    500 Love Its 100 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    Whenever we go to the pool at the rec by our house, kids flock to us.  My husband and I are the only two parents who actually GET in the water, so all the kids somehow glom on to us. It drives me crazy.  I'm already nervous enough keeping an eye on my 3 year old in the water, to feel like I need to keep track of other kids really makes me anxious. 
  • 6fsn6fsn member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    I admit sometimes I am actually ignoring my kids. (Like right now). Sometimes it just looks that way. If they are in 3 places I sit where I can see everyone. That’s normally not near any of them. 
  • 6fsn said:
    I admit sometimes I am actually ignoring my kids. (Like right now). Sometimes it just looks that way. If they are in 3 places I sit where I can see everyone. That’s normally not near any of them. 

    Of course not!  You need the broad view, vantage point ;).  Little do they know that mom sees all, lol.
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