Why Don’t You Want to Meet Me?
We all hear of the terrible things children experience at the hands of “trustworthy” adults. So why are some parents skeptical, resentful and downright fearful of meeting the parents of their children’s friends?
I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m the exception. I want to meet the parent(s)/guardian(s) of my daughter’s friends. I want to know in whose company she will be, if there will be adult supervision while my child is in their care, and what other adults, if any, she will be around.
I expect the parent(s)/guardian(s) of my daughter’s friends to feel the same way. In fact, I offer as much information about myself and the work I do as possible in an effort to ease that parent’s mind.
Maybe this makes me over-protective. If so, then I will continue to be this way. Why? It is a fact that many (not all) of the children who are harmed by an adult experience terrible things because there wasn’t another adult to intercede on that child’s behalf. No one ensured that the child was protected.
Still, offering what we can seems to evoke a show of hostility from some parents. Some fail to see that this small gesture of kindness is actually a good thing.
For example, when my daughter asked permission for her friend to go to the movies with us, I said, sure, as long as I get to speak to her mother about it first. According to her friend, her mom was on board with the idea. But any parent knows not to trust everything children say at face value. That’s when I tried to contact her mother directly to get her permission, if not in person, then at last by phone and avoid any misunderstanding over who her child was with.
For days, I got the run around. Her mother never returned my calls (For the record, I only called three times over a two day period). When I saw her at school waiting in line to pick up her daughter, she never acknowledged me, nor did she try to make excuses about why she failed to return my calls.
Days later, when I saw her and her daughter at a school function, I headed in her direction to meet her in person. Passing through a crowd of other bodies, she dashed for the nearest exit.
Soon, I told my daughter I was done. I felt that I had done everything possible to meet her friend’s mother, who was blatantly avoiding me. This told me that she didn’t want my child going out with her.
When her daughter saw me and insisted that she could go with us, I had no choice but to deny her. The last thing I needed was repercussions for trying to take her out with my daughter to the movies. To this day, I refuse to take her anywhere, or let her into my home.