Monday, February 07, 2011

Would you?

Ethan has a friend, John, who is one of eight children. John has never been allowed to spend then night at our house. I had just assumed that none of their children were allowed to spend the night at their friends' houses. Then Ethan asked John why none of them were allowed to spend the night away from home, to which John replied, "We are. I'm just not allowed to spend the night at houses without married parents."

I had something very similar to me happen when I was growing up. I was friends with these twin girls in my neighborhood. Every time the girls would ask their mom if they could stay the night, she'd say no. I noticed they were allowed to stay the night at other houses, so one day I grew balls and asked the mom why. She replied, "You don't have a mother living in your house. I don't feel comfortable letting my girls stay the night in a house with just a dad and no mom."

I don't understand this line of thinking. There is one house where I won't let Ethan stay the night and it's only because the dad is completely irresponsible. He lets the kids do whatever they want, whenever they want. Before I knew this, I would let Ethan stay the night there. Then I found out that he let them play outside, running around the neighborhood, until they decided to come in at 1:30 in the morning.

Joe and I are very responsible people. We have structure and discipline in our house. No, we're not married yet, but that doesn't make us any less a family or any less responsible.

Personally, I feel like it's an insult to not let a child stay at our house because we're not married. I get that maybe the parents are religious and maybe they don't want their son to think that "living in sin" is OK. But I still think it's ridiculous. We're in the year 2011 and the reality is that more and more couples are living together before marriage.

What do you feel about the situation? Would you let your child stay the night at a house with an unwed couple? What about a single parent?


Grant said...

I would only care that the kids are being properly supervised, not about the status of the people's relationships. I'd take a responsible gay couple over the guy you described easily. Especially if they were Asian women who liked to make out in front of other people.

My mother wouldn't let me sleep over at my father's house with his new girlfriend there until he married her, and that was in her pre-Christian days. Some people just grow up with strange rules handed down through the generations and never think to question them.

Joker_SATX said...

I try my hardest to get that line of thinking as far away from me as possible. The way I see it, if they are not open and secure enough in themselves to come visit Joe and you and ask questions as to what is expected, then they have other issues.

What I do is to try to find out why they think that way and then disassociate myself and my family from them. I tell my kids exactly why I am doing this too. So if it ever gets back to them, I spark a reaction.

Either they will have nothing to do with me and the feeling is mutual or I can get them to come around to my way of thinking...which in all honesty is quite progressive.

Egotistical and hypocritical bigots are not allowed in this Joker's sphere of influence....

April said...

Grant: I agree. As long as the kids are properly supervised, then it shouldn't matter what the marital status is of the parents.

Joker: I suspect that they feel that way for religious reasons. It's pretty damn hard to change the mind of people who have made up their mind because of a religious belief. Besides, they let their son come over to my house, and vice versa. He's just not allowed to spend the night. I would have a problem if they didn't let their son play with my son because of Joe and I not being married.

Kira said...

I always meet the parent(s) first. If they seem responsible and caring, then my children can stay there. If they/he/she does not, then my children do not stay there.

That being said, after working for DSS as a foster care worker and seeing that most pedophiles by far are guys preying on little girls, I do understand at least where that parent was coming from. I'd have to know the fellow fairly well myself before I felt comfortable sending a small Ariana over there. I even dealt with a case over there wherein the dad was molesting his daughter, and it only came out after her girlfriend was spending the night and daddy tried to climb into the friend's sleeping bag. So, while investigating that charge, the police stumbled across the situation with the daughter, too. Nowadays, though, I don't worry so much about Ariana. She's a little death machine at this point what with her archery and swords skills, haha!

April said...

Kira: Both Joe and I have met Johns parents on several occasions. They have been to our house and we have been to theirs. They are very nice and do not treat us with any prejudice. And I'm sure that they're rule is across the board and not just for us.

While I do understand the parents concern for their sons safety, I do not see him being any more safe in a house with a married couple vs. a house with an engaged couple.

Anonymous said...

We do not let our youngest spend the night with a friend of hers if she is staying at her dads. She is 12 and spent the night with this girl at her moms. We have met the dad and he seems nice but you really never know. His ex wife has said he has a temper. We do not want to put our daughter in a situation that she can not get out of. I think if we had a son it may be different. As she gets older this may change.

Another Suburban Mom said...

I think Ethan's friends parents are suffering from H-U-B Syndrome and you should stay far away in case its contagious.

I have let DB stay at friends houses where the parents are just engaged or living together and all I care about is that he is properly supervised and that he treats the parents politely and does not wake them up at the crack of dawn.

Kira said...

April--I was only referencing your own situation as a girl with a father but no mom in the house. I was not referencing the other situation with you and Joe! Heck, my kids see friends of ours who are not married share a room (and a bed) in our house. That one is not an issue for us ;)

April said...

Kira: Yesterday, I should not have bothered to read or write anything. It was the day after the Super Bowl and I was extremely tired and a little hungover. I mean, I spelled they're in place of their for shits sake! After reading your comment today, I can see that's what you were speaking of.

Randi said...

Sometimes I think we'd all be better off with no marital statuses. Fuckit. I'll go out on a limb and say no gender statuses as well. Gender and sexual preference and marital status do not a good person make - or unmake.
There. I said it.