When to use your words

The Hare and I took Luna for a walk yesterday afternoon. It was a great opportunity to have some mother/daughter girl time. The Hare likes to tell personal, well-thought out jokes she has created. She also likes to fill me in on all the happenings of her “students” at her pretend school (in her bedroom). For the most part, I just get to listen, which I love because it gives me a bit different perspective of my daughter.

About a block or two away from our house lives a little girl The Hare knows from school and sports activities. For a while they were spending quite a good deal of time together, but recently there has been some strain. Most of which, I think, stems from parental competition unfortunately, and the fact that I just don’t feel comfortable around the father anymore. The father has said some very inappropriate things to me and to the The Tortoise which has resulted in my not allowing The Hare to have any more playdates at their house.

For example:

Child’s father to The Tortoise at a Brownie meeting: “Whose cute butt is that across the room?”

The Tortoise: “Are you talking about my mom’s butt?”

Child’s father to The Tortoise: “Oh! So you think your mom’s butt is cute too??”

Ahem – don’t talk to my pre-teen daughter about my butt, please, or any of my body parts for that matter.

On another occasion the father scolded me at a book fair because he strongly believed that I didn’t need to buy the same book for The Hare that he was purchasing for his daughter – why couldn’t we just share one book? Um – because I’m not your wife and this isn’t your child? He then made his daughter give up her book (which he had already purchased) and told her she could just borrow ours once The Hare had finished reading it first.

It was also bad enough that every time I talked to him on the phone he would say things like, “Hi sexy lady, whatcha’ wearing today?” (Yeah, uncomfortable) but then he started embarrassing me in public too. At gymnastics one day he watched me give The Hare a big hug and kiss before practice, then announced to all the parents dropping off their children,

“Yeah, Emily used to say goodbye to me like that too until we broke up.”

Seriously! Shut up!

The Hare has specifically asked to not carpool with them anymore or have anymore sleep overs. Of course, my mom antenna is on red alert worrying about safety and if there has been anything inappropriate beyond his crude remarks that I should be aware of right away. The only thing The Hare has said was that he told his kids that she was spoiled and that he didn’t want her coming over at dinner time anymore because she was too picky. Why would you relay that comment to your 8-year-old daughter? Did he seriously think she wouldn’t tell my daughter the next time they saw each other?

After the last public nuisance, I had made a decision to finally call him out on his behaviour the next time it happened. But of course, the next time I saw him, DW was with me and he was on his best behaviour. UGH!

As we rounded the corner to head home on our walk, The Hare asked if we could see if this girl was home for a playdate…at our house, of course.

“Really? Are you just bored or are you missing her specifically?” I cringed at the thought of stopping by their house.

“I really want to play with her, that’s all.”

“Yeah, but, if we have a playdate then they might start inviting you over again and wanting to carpool and stuff.”

“I know, ” she said sullenly, “But can’t we just keep having playdates at our house and not carpool?”

I thought about this for a minute. It really wasn’t that appealing to me, but we see them all the time and it has been a little weird that we haven’t invited her over all summer.

“Alright, I guess that would be okay.”

We started to head down their street.

“Is there anything else you want to tell me about going to her house, sweetie?”

“Like what mom?”

“Like why you don’t like going over there anymore.”

“Her dad is just so weird mom, and says weird things all the time.”

“Can you tell me what kinds of things?” I asked concerned.

“Well…he uses really bad words, a lot,” she exclaimed. “And he says ’em even when he isn’t fixin’ stuff or watching football. Not like dad, he knows when to use his words.”

7 thoughts on “When to use your words

  1. I love how kids put things…so straight forward, simple and matter-of-factly! Haha.

    And as for that strange dad, he’s not the only “creeper” in town I’m sure, but it sounds like you’ve got a handle on it. It’s nice that you let the kids hang out together still. And the next time he does something shady, call him out in front of a group and that should make a point!

  2. I would wonder if there are some relevant things going on in his home with his daughters. On the chance you have an opportunity to uncover child abuse and change the life of that child, I think it is important for you to keep the door open to that child.

    1. I have seriously thought of that myself and have voiced my concerns with my husband, and even opened the door for conversation with my own kids. It’s hard not to “go there” in our mom thinking, isn’t it? Especially when the last statistic I heard was that 1 in 3 women have experienced sexual abuse at some time in their life. Scary.

    1. I know, right?? She has never said anything – maybe she is blind to it all, but she has never questioned why I won’t let my little one play at their house any more and keeps letting her daughter come to our house instead. We’ll see…

  3. The whole weird-dad-thing was totally creeping me out but I have got to say that I LOVE the last line. Classic!

    1. The weird dad thing creeps me out too! But for some reason I felt like I needed to explain why we don’t allow play dates over there anymore. Would you even let the playdates happen at your house??

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