We have now had custody of the kids for about 1.5 years. When they first came to live with us full time, I was worried that they were going to struggle finding new friends. I’ve been worried about that since day one. When they lived with their mom, they moved a lot and had difficulty making friends.
After they started school, I would hear mention of friends, but no names and no asking if they could go play with the friends. I was REALLY worried because my daughter, T, she is a follower. A BIG follower. I want to teach her that it’s better to be the leader than the follower. I get that not all “followers” are bad, but T was so desperate for ANY friends, that she would do whatever, you know?
Well, within the last 6 months, T and B found out that they have friends that live in our apartment complex! Yay!! T still never asked if she could go play at her friend’s house, and then one day her friend just showed up at our door to play.
I told T, I said, I have no problem with A coming over to play at our house, but just please ask first. Just so that we’re aware and it’s not a surprise. She was ok with that.
Last week, T & B spent some time over at A’s house. A has 1 older sister, and then younger brother (B’s age) and a younger sister, probably 5 or 6. I went over to pick the kids up and actually got to have a face to face conversation with the mom and meet the mom and she seemed really cool.
Well, last night, after my husband left for work, T & B asked if they could go play at their friend’s house. Come to find out, her mom wasn’t going to be home, just her mom’s boyfriend. That was a big fat no from me. Lol. I told the kids, I have absolutely no problem if her friend wants to come over here to play, but they cannot go over there unless her mom’s home. Plus, with everything my kids have been through, there is NO way they are going to be in a home with an adult male, by themselves, when there isn’t another adult present. Just no. Lol.
After we got home from running some errands last night, I let them go and invite their friend over, and lo and behold, their friend’s little brother and sister come along too. Needless to say, I was slightly overwhelmed. I had 5 kids and 2 dogs in my little 2 bedroom apartment.
I felt like my house had turned in to Romper Room. My anxiety was SHOOTING through the roof. First off, I wasn’t planning on having 5 kids in my house, only a total of 3. Then, my poor dogs. The littlest one, she’s probably 5 or 6, was OBSESSED with my dogs. “Where’s Tank? Come here Dobbie! Why is Tank just lying there? Why does Dobbie go in his kennel? Come here Tank.” To an extent, my dogs LOVED the attention, but at the same time, there comes a point where they want to be left alone too.
We had gone and rented a RedBox and only 2 of the 5 kids were watching it. I realize kids will be kids, but my OCD kicks in, and I want all the kids to sit there and watch the movie and not be so loud. I eventually just put myself back in our bedroom and away from the kids to distract myself. I knew the kids were having fun, but I was just insanely overwhelmed. Lol.
One highlight of my night though…I made them dinner and I’m sure it was because his friends were around, but I dished up dinner and gave it to the kids and I heard B say “Thanks Mom”. He said it kind of softly, but still loud enough for everyone to hear. That definitely made me proud. We’ve always told the kids, if they want to call me mom, that’s great, I’ll take it. But, I’m not going to force them to.
I realize that for a lot of people, 5 kids over at their house isn’t a big deal. I posted something on Facebook about it last night, and a lot of my friends said “That is my every day.” How they do it, I’ll never know? I think I might go bonkers. Kudos to you folks for being able to handle it. I don’t know, maybe if I had a bigger house, instead of a little 2 bedroom apartment, it wouldn’t be as anxiety inducing.
I’m just glad my kids now have friends and feel comfortable letting their friends come over to our house.