The Playdate Dilemma

Avatar for cmkristy
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
The Playdate Dilemma
Wed, 01-09-2013 - 8:25am

Your child has a met a new friend at school and is invited over for a playdate. Before you let him go, do you have your list of questions ready for the other child’s parent?

Will you ask if they have guns in the home? If they drink alcohol?  If they do drugs?

While discussing whether the names and addresses of people owning gun permits should be published in a newspaper, which recently happened in a suburb north of New York City, Donny Deutsch of TODAY’s Professionals said it was OK for the newspaper to print it because it’s public information that people, especially parents, want to know.

“I’ve got two little girls at home. And I would like to know if they are going on a playdate at house with a gun. I would like to know that it is properly locked up,” Deutsch said.

But when asked if Deutsch would ask the parents about owning guns on his own, Deutsch said he wouldn’t.

Interesting topic.  Do you ask if there are guns in the home when bringing your child to a playdate?  What questions do you ask?

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Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Thu, 02-07-2013 - 2:20am

  You sound like you are not understanding the problem.  Parents nowadays do not want to parent.  Teaching the child about guns is important.  many people resent the state making them less safe.  A locked gun in just a hunk of metal.  Perhaps you live in a large house where you can run lock doors and buy time to unlock and load your weapon.  Mosty don't.  Just that simple.

PS there is no such thing as a burglar proof home.   A person can just kick the door in.


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2002
Sat, 02-02-2013 - 8:44pm

I don't ask those questions because I'm almost 100% certain I wouldn't get an honest answer.  I keep playdates out of the home to a short time period.  But just yesterday, for instance, we had 2 playdates here - one until 9 pm!  I think I have a playdate-friendly house.  I was glad to see the map of guns in the NY suburb but am aware there can be plenty of illegal guns in homes.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2002
Sat, 02-02-2013 - 8:36pm

Abortions are not public record.  I think everything else you mentioned is ~ and welfare can't go beyond 18 months.  Whether or not the public records of gun owners are published in the newspaper, HOW CAN ANY GUN OWNER NOT TAKE PRECAUTIONS AND BURGLAR-PROOF HIS/HER HOME??  I really don't get that.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2002
Sat, 02-02-2013 - 8:32pm

How awful, Jamblessed.  These things are not black and white.  DS went over friend's house for just 2.5 hours and came home in tears.  His friend ignored him the entire time (friend played on his new 3D DS....alone).  And we've known the parents and friend for years, from school, little league, playdates.  Who can predict? 

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Mon, 01-14-2013 - 4:22pm

What concerns me about publishing a list of gun owners isn't so much the loss of privacy (although that certainly bothers me), but the loss of safety. Now, with the publication of that list in the paper, every gun-running crook in the area knows where to steal weapons, and every burglar knows which house isn't armed. They may as well have published lists of jewelry and expensive electronics owned by each homeowner. I would much rather crooks not know whether I own a gun or nice jewelry or any other private information.

I agree that it is much better to know your children's friends' parents, but this is much harder to do when they are middle school age and older. That's why I feel the burden is on me as a parent to teach my own children principles of safety and common sense, as well as personal responsibility. This helps them choose friends who make good decisions.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Sat, 01-12-2013 - 9:47pm

What Donny Deutsch is basically saying, is that he is a coward, and that before this list of gun owners was published, he either never let his little girls go on a playdate, or that his concern for their safety at the home of a gunowner is pretty much non-existent...not to mention that even publishing the names and addresses of gun owners doesn't tell you a thing about what kind of gun they may have, how many, or how those guns may be stored.  In the end, it's simply more BS rationalizing from a disingenuous left.

It's also been amusing to see the left support outing lawful gun owners "because it's public information", but watch them squirm when asked if welfare recipients, women who've had abortions, or even simply people who have been convicted of crimes should also be "outed."  After all, as taxpayers, we might be interested in whether the local welfare reciepients are spending our money appropriately or working hard enough at finding a job, how many aboritons our neighbors had or whether anyone we know might have been convicted of a crime.

As far as our family goes, we don't allow playdates unless we've taken the time to get to know the parents...and unlike the apparently gutless Donny Deutsch, we ask the other parents about things that concern the safety of our children, we don't wait endlessly, in the hope that some activists in a newspaper will ask them for us and publish the information.

Avatar for jamblessedthree
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001
Wed, 01-09-2013 - 6:34pm
Our house is still the house many kids gravitate towards and frankly, I like it that way! One neighbor is here all the time and his drop ins out number the times my kid goes there by far..... Having said that I wouldn't feel comfortable sending my kid to a house I didn't know, I don't even know how you would bring such a thing up, Uhm, I'm concerned about firearms - do you own any? I have started backing off the need to know my older kids' friend's families but that latch is still on too, A few weeks ago DD2 had called me from school on a Fri afternoon to ask if she could spend the night at a friend's house, While I did know the friend I didn't know the family and I just told her it was ok as long as it was ok with the girl's parents. Low and behold, 7:00 came around and DD called asking that I pick her up, I met the mom for the first time that night, She was nice but not overly friendly and DD reeked of cigarette smoke, I'm glad I picked her up b/c that smell alone is just gross.



iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Wed, 01-09-2013 - 2:31pm

I did ask that question if I didn't know the parents very well, but I usually phrased it as: "Are any firearms you own locked away?" It sounded less judgmental and less likely to put someone on the spot than asking whether they owned guns. I found that many parents would volunteer the info anyway, along with other areas of concern, as in "We've got two big dogs that we can keep in their crates if your daughter is scared." I have to say I was always more comfortable with the parents who would just volunteer the information rather than making me ask.

The flip side of this is that all parents need to teach their own kids what to do when they encounter hazards, whether they be guns, prescription drugs, chemicals, lighters,drunk people, etc.