Inappropriate for siblings to be included in play date?

  • Recently, my daughter had a play date at our house and her friend’s mom sent her little sister along. This was not a problem for us, but I was wondering what everyone’s opinion is? Is it assumed that when there is a play-date that siblings are included? -- Chris, Strongmoms Facilitator

  • I would think that it would have been cleared by both parents when the play date was set up, just to clarify so there's no surprises. Then again, was the little sister invited? If not then no it wasn't okay. I'm assuming you and the other parent spoke ahead of time about this and mentioned the kids names, was the little sister's name spoken of? You might've just been a cheap babysitter without knowing it. Next time let the play date be at their house and send all 3-4 of your kids since that's apparently acceptable.

  • I think it depends on the situation: Such as do all the girls get along and are they close in age. I personally don't have much of a problem with it but my girls are going to be 19 months apart and when they are a little older are going to have some of the same friends. I look at it as when my daughters are 6 and 7 they are going to be in the same developmental stage and the more the more the merrier, I can send them all outside to play a rousing game of hide and seek or tag.

    However if they don't get along or are not close in age I don't feel it is appropriate, cause then one child is going to feel left out.

    It comes down to a matter of personal opinion, did the mother come over for the play date and watch the younger sister or did she just drop them off. I would always ask if it were ok for both of my girls to play and not make assumptions, but I a fine with siblings comings for play dates as I strongly believe in the more the merrier as long the children are well behaved and get along with my girls. My SO however feels that only the child discussed in coming over for the play date should attend. It really is a matter of opinion and consideration. When I do a play date, most of the time I never leave my girl unattended (she is only 18 months and 3 three weeks old right now and her sister is due 13 days) and I doubt that will change until they are school age.

  • Wow!  I think this should have been pre-approved.  


  • I would definitely be surprised! I guess I would just shrug it off and have the little sister along for the play date but if she wasn't expressly invited, I would not be expecting her at all. I wouldn't probably drop my youngest off at a play date for my older child...maybe I'm just not aware of how it works?? 

  • If the parent would have asked I would not have given it a second thought. The little sister has palled around with my kids, but I think that communication is important, especially when you don't wnat your children to be a burden to the parent with the play date. The responses so far are what I expected and pretty much mirrored my feelings.

  • I have 4 kids one of which is a boy. He had met friend on our street who had several brothers and sisters. Well the one day that his friend was coming over I got a surprise of 2 extra bodies. His mom had sent him with his two slightly younger brothers. I truthfully think it's kind of rude to expect the other parent who is holding the playdate at their house. I try to keep snacks and stuff in the house for "just in case" times when my children's friends come to visit our house. If I know they have a friend coming over I make sure there is enough food for everyone. When I had 2 extra bodies sprung on me, it left me a bit unprepared. I would say it's not a problem but rude on the other parent's side. Should have asked you first if it was alright. That way you would have been prepared for 3 kids instead of 2. Also what if her little sister had allergies to something. You wouldn't have known since the mother didn't send instructions of what all was safe to eat or drink. That is the first thing I ask my children's friends parents. What are the allergies. Never know who is allergic these days!!


  • momwithafullhouse-

    You brought up such great points, true evidence of an experienced and responsible parent!  I so appreciated what you said about allergies.  These are all important things to consider and I am so glad that you brought them to light.


  • Momwithafullhouse- Very good points! Just having a friend over is an extra thing for you to do and keep your eyes on while going about your busy day - it only multiplies with extra siblings over! Allergies are all over the place, as you mentioned, and it's so important to know that information about kids before you care for them!
  • One of my girls has some acute allergies and that is always something we are aware of before we put her in any situation, and we make sure to communicate what those are to anyone and everyone with whom we leaver her. Great point.