HI OTMUTHER,

The other day I had a play date for my son at my home. With a child from the bus stop. The child’s mother asked if I minded she stay for the play date and bring her 4 year old daughter along too. I didn’t mind, in fact I was relieved she was responsible and a concerned mom like me to not just drop her 7 year old off at just anyone’s house. Because though we have the same bus stop we have never spoken, out of saftey I stay on our side of the highway until the bus comes. BUT this wasn’t my issue. It was a rainy day so the kids were stuck inside- All 5 ( my 3- her 2) . I was expecting this to be an hour to hour and a half possibly 2 hour play date. It turned into 3 1/2 ..ugh.. it was to long being stuck inside like that with my freshly cleaned home with wild kids and I didn’t know how to end it. I wasn’t going to say ” well, time for YOU to go.” I see you have children so I was wondering if you have ever been in a situation like that and how to politely end a play date.

Dear Play Date,

Yes, we have all encountered “the guest that wouldn’t leave.”
It’s a really sticky and uncomfortable situation and I truly never understood how that “guest” didn’t pick up on it.

The lesson here is to announce the start/end time of each play date. This is something you usually learn once you’ve had this experience.
Next play date or any play date here after say something to the effect of “Bobby would like Sam to come over for a play date. I was wondering if Sam can come from 2-4 on Saturday? I have a busy day but if Sam can come at that time the kids could play before I have to start preparing dinner.” Then sick to it. At 3:45 say “Bobby starting cleaning your toys up, Sam has to go soon because I have to start dinner.” Done deal.
In my opinion never and I mean NEVER leave anything open to interpretation. Heaven forbid you run into the next scenario you
may very well hear “May I leave Sam to play while I run some errands and you become a daycare for the day.”
One word SCHEDULING, good luck.

Huge Muther Hugs,

OTM

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