We live in a fairly rural area.
Frankly, I can't answer this without being slightly rude, so I apologize in advance. IMO you need to find your backbone. There is not one thing listed that I would have tolerated for an instance! In our home all screens have time limits, so playing for hours would not have been allowed. I would have unplugged it and told them when they were allowed back on (and in my house that would have been a long time away, we only allow an hour or so a day on screen time. I would have encouraged outdoor play, games, creative anything, but I would not allow my kids to be on PS all day (but I'm also one of the few parents in the world with a teen and no gaming system). A kid who told ME he was sleeping over would have been immediately informed (incredulously) that I was not asked for permission and in fact, he needed to go home. That shows an incredible amount of disrespect and I can't imagine allowing it. A kid in my house without ME being awake? No way, no how, I would inform that child to his face that he needs to wait until a certain time of day to show up.
These kids are disrespectful and frankly they wouldn't be kids I would want to foster friendships with, so if they get ticked off it wouldn't concern me personally. I expect a lot out of teens and those who can't hack it aren't welcome. End of story. Friends are not as important as character.
So my advice is to set house rules and stick with them. Limit the time on the PS3, send them home for dinner (tell them it's family dinner time, for YOUR family), no sleepovers without parental permission (and for me, I couldn't allow it without having personally talked to the other parents), no showing up before a certain time of day (for me that would probably be noon, but after they ate lunch), etc. My sister used to leave a sign on her door that told kids it was family time, all the neighbor kids knew that meant they couldn't even knock at that time, it worked well for her.
Decide what you are willing to tolerate, inform the kids of such, and enforce it fully. I am honestly in amazement, I wouldn't have tolerated one day of it!
"The main part of intellectual education is not the acquisition of facts but learning how to make facts live."
-- Oliver Wendell Holmes
I can't think of a time when i have ever disagreed with your advice. I cannot imagine putting up with this type of behaviour from a neighbour's child nor would I allow mine to invade someone else's life like that. Keep replying to the posts because you are one smart lady:)
My house is very often the place where the kids congregate. DD has always been a velcro child, and she still prefers to hang out here with friends rather than go elsewhere.
Well, I can certainly see from those kids' point of view why they would rather be in your house playing w/ your kids & their PS 3 (which I assume the neighbor kids don't have) rather than staying home alone all week. I don't really blame the kids, but the parents. My SIL basically would send her son to our house on every school vacation while she was working because at that time, my DH was not working due to an injury. Now his DD & his nephew were the same age and had grown up together, but I felt that this was really too much. The boy would show up at the beginning of vacation week and we would never know how many days he would be here, plus it's not as if it was every reciprocated. My SIL never had DSD to her house overnight once (mainly because my DSD didn't want to stay over there.) Finally it got to the point where my DH had to come out & say "Mike can come over, but only for the weekend, not the whole week." I also had 2 kids and because Mike & DSD were 5 yrs older than my DS, he could start to be picked on. Plus it's not like she ever gave us money for the extra food or anything.
There have been many situations also w/ neighborhood kids who overextended their welcome where basically you have to say "it's time to go home now. We are going to eat dinner" or something like that. I guess you can't really blame these kids because they probably figured that you liked having them over since you never said anything. Maybe you have to tell your sons that they have to ask you before they invite the other kids over and if the other kids just come to the door, tell them, "we have something else planned for the day." Or don't be afraid to tell them "You can come over, but only until 2:00" or whatever. Kids don't get subtle hints. I know someone else said they would limit time on video games, but it's school vacation week and it's too cold to go outside. If they got a new game, of course they will do it a lot. My DS got a Wii for Christmas, plus a few games. When I first set it up, he played it the first day for hours. But he didn't play every day of vacation week, cause he went to grandma's for 2 days, one day I took him to the movies and now he's at his dad's. When he goes back to school, he just won't have the time to play, but it will give him something to do after school until I get home from work.
I would have no problem telling the children and their parents how I felt about this. First, my kids know what they can and cannot do. They aren't allowed to have company over without asking first and there is NO exception. Furthermore, no one is allowed in our home when we are still asleep.
I would put some
The reason those boys have short attention spans is because they have no limits on screen time. But that's not your problem. As others have said, send them home the minute they come over without an invitation. And call their parents to let them know their kids are on the way home.
Kids that age do need supervision, maybe not for a few hours, but it's wrong to leave them to their own devices all day for a week. Many parents mistakenly think that just because they're in middle or high school, they don't need as much attention, but this is absolutely false. Those parents should have enrolled them in a vacation week camp (most areas have these) or taken some time off from work.
And in the meantime, you need to set some limits on your sons' screen time. We don't have any type of gaming system, but I know from my son's experience with computer games that it's very easy to get sucked in and lose track of time. I suggest buying a timer.
Ramona Mom to 2 great kids and wife to one wonderful hubby since 1990!