socializing with other families

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-19-2008
socializing with other families
9
Sun, 12-20-2009 - 12:32am

im the dad but asking for both myself and my wife. when our older child was in preschool she'd be invited to birthday parties all the time. this was because people would give invites to the whole class. last yr in kindergarten however, there were no invites, save one, which was another whole class party. we thought that maybe most of her friends had bdays in the summer, but come to think of it that shouldnt have made a difference. obviously the parties are smaller, but why no invites for our child? and shes popular and well known in her class.

specifically we found out recently that one child, who is a friend of our daughters and whos mother we thought liked us, and is very friendly, had a party at which many of the kids from school were invited.but not us. and we found this out from a mother who is not that close with their family but was invited. my explanation to my wife about this particular example was that because she doesnt volunteer at the school and isnt in a "social club" with the other moms, she isnt thought of. the parents get together and have the kids play outside of school probably a lot. then when bday party comes its like, "ok honey, who do you want to invite." the kids havent formed serious friendships in 1st grade yet, and so they mention the kids they've seen a lot of. im assuming this is how it plays out.

can any of you moms tell us what the mentality here may be? are moms really that bad about who they choose for their kids to see more of? do they just support friendships with kids where they are already friends with the mom? and its not like my wife could be disliked by these people. shes just not socially involved.
there was one mom last year whose kid was best friends with our daughter and she never even asked my wife for a playdate. in that case, she was clearly doing a disservice to her daughter by acting like an ass.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2008
Mon, 12-21-2009 - 11:02am

Playdates tend to drop off once they get into elementary school, since the kids are old enough to have fun together without having to be constantly supervised.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-19-2008
Mon, 12-21-2009 - 4:07pm
these women are sahms. playdates still happen because the kids still need to be supervised fro many years into elementary. why do you think its a more of a girls thing?
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Tue, 12-22-2009 - 11:13am

Girls in 1st to about 3rd grade (maybe longer, not sure) tend to be "two is company, three is a crowd." My daughter in 1st grade was number 3. She was always on the outside of the groups and other than the boy with Asperger's whose mother pulled him from school early in the year, didn't have good friends outside of the homeschool girl who lived next door.

Have you had children over for play dates? It may help when birthday time comes to invite some kids over sooner so that the mom's remember your daughter more. If there are park days or afterschool group park play times, find out and take your daughter and hang out if you can. And as for a party for your daughter, if you can afford it, invite the whole class. (Parks work well for this type of party.)

Some of the moms may have an agenda and that is too bad. Others may just not know your daughter and so forget to invite her, not being intentionally mean. Ask to meet some for coffee at the park or something so that you can get to know them while the kids play. It should make a difference and the moms I know would love hanging out with both moms and dads.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-19-2008
Wed, 12-23-2009 - 1:48am

the main problem is that im the husband. the moms have all the control over this stuff. my wife makes minimal efforts to socialize because shes not a social person, though she also says that after all her errands every day (whatever those are) she doesnt have the energy. and i'm not going to anticipate when kids birthdays are and have my daughter write them cards in hopes that they'll remember her for their parties.

it does seem the main problem is with my wife. if she was out there then she wouldnt be forgotten. everyone knows my daughter, but they're not inviting her becasue they dont hang out w/my wife, which is totally asinine on the part of the mothers. dont they know who their kids friends are?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2007
Sat, 12-26-2009 - 2:03am
From my experience, I've met moms who are very friendly and just social butterflies and love to plan things with other moms and their kids, and then there are moms who aren't, and that's ok (as long as they're not rude snobs). I'm a stay-at-home mom and so far my son has made friends with boys whose moms I have nothing in common with, and I really don't care to socialize with them. I only do the playdates for the sake of my son, but I always feel kind of awkward or uncomfortable socializing with their moms especially when they start talking religion or politics, something they we're not on the same page with. Sometimes I just take him to their house and leave him for the playdate so I don't have to deal with the chitchat. I mean, I would love for him to make friends with a kid whose mom I could totally hit it off with, but it just doesn't always turn out that way. I really wish he had friends on our block he could play with everyday so that I wouldn't have to plan playdates, but we don't have anyone here.
There is one particular snobby mom on our block who has never been friendly. She told her kids not to play with my son when he used to have a speech delay. Since then, they've completely ignored him when he wants to play with them. I mean, it is one thing when a mom doesn't want to be friendly, but when she teaches her kids to be cold snobs too, it's just not ok.
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-19-2008
Sat, 12-26-2009 - 2:38am

thats crazy. how do you know she actually did that? are you sure? I mean thats pretty evil.

again, im the dad and my wife isnt helping out with this issue so im stuck.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2008
Tue, 12-29-2009 - 1:33pm
Have you thought about having your daughter join something like Brownies, gymnastics, art classes, etc where you could take her?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-30-2003
Wed, 01-13-2010 - 1:26pm

Hi all, new here. I have a 6 1/2 year-old DD in the first grade.

I've been struggling as a FT working mother in ways I never did when DD was in DC. At DC, of course, everyone worked, but now many of her classmates have SAHMs or PT working moms. DD hates going to the after school program, and wishes I could volunteer in the class room. Fortunately her BF's Mother, who I am close to, works part-time and is very involved at the school. So that gets her a little bit of an "in". She has a playdate after school with this friend once or twice a week.

Many of the kids have playdates after school, and we were left out at one her best friend's birthday party last year, because the mom just invited people she had done playdates with. They've become much closer this year, so I don't imagine she'll be left out again. She desperately wants to have a playdate with this girl, but finding time on the weekends is hard. I keep hoping someone else will invite her over after school.

DD was invited to, I think, 5 birthday parties total last year. One we had to miss; it was in the summer and we were on vacation. But we didn't invite any school friends, accept the BF mentions above, to hers. It is a challenge, because while inviting a whole preschool class of ten is doable. Inviting all 25+ first graders is not. She's only been to one birthday party this year, and her BF's is in a week. I actually don't mind having less birthday parties. Trying to fit in the birthday of every child in my DS preschool class left no extra time on weekends for several weeks this fall.

Anne

I have no need for anger
With intimate strangers
And I got nothing to hide


- Amy Ray

I have no need for anger
With intimate strangers
And I got nothing to hide


- Amy Ray

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Fri, 01-15-2010 - 2:41pm

Do you have time to take your daughter places? If you do, set up a play date at the park, ice rink, sledding hill or indoor play area. Bring coco and snack for adults and kids. Invite the moms - tell them you will be at the park on Friday at 3:00 and would love it if they and their kids could join you. I have hung out at the park with lots of dads - you are not out of place for being there. (You will get brownie points for being the dad at the park unless you are trying to look down women's shirts or something - which most adult married men won't do!) If you don't have the time, well then that is not your wife's problem, it is both of yours. Some people don't do the social scene - it sounds like your wife may be one of those. So you will need to do it for your daughter if you want her to have that opportunity.

As another said, you could also join various sports if you feel that you are more comfortable with that. There probably will be more dads at them than mothers.

But, just the same, don't be afraid to hang out with the women, yes, they may talk about their husbands, but then again, you may be surprised at what you have in common - fishing, hunting, camping, music, cars, are things that you can connect with them on that are no longer just the domain of men - and once you connect then they will hopefully start including you and your daughter more. If they are extremely shallow and hold your maleness against you, then you probably wouldn't want your daughter to socialize with them anyhow.