bad manners at a play date

navigating . . . the playdate

March 24, 2014

Oh, did your kid scream her head off during the large-scale playdate you hosted? First off, don’t be embarrassed. I’ve had this exact same experience, as has any mother of a 2+ year old. All the other moms have either had this experience, or if their child is extremely unusual and they’ve never hosted anything, maybe they were horrified. Truly, though, this is totally normal and to be expected. Why? Because your kid is 2+ and is developing at lightening speed internally and behavior can’t keep up! When I last had this happen and we had about 7 other little monsters over, and SuperBoy was completely ballistic out of his mind, luckily, my mom was home that day. She took him upstairs so I could continue to host and he could reclaim his brain particles. But what about when it’s just you & the monster & maybe a baby in arms and a room full of other mothers? A few things that have helped me: 1) Prep prep prep. Prep the kids ahead of time: “Children are coming. they’re going to touch all your toys. If there is a toy you don’t want to share, let’s put it in your room. We want our friends to be happy, so we’re going to share.” I often have to remind them mid-date (if they’re acting up) that “We’re going to have a wonderful snack. Little children who share nicely get a really nice treat!” I’m not above bribery, or attempts thereof. 2)…

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