Dear Other Moms: Just Because I Have Kids Doesn't Mean I'm Okay With Yours Tearing Up My House

Upset mother with hands on head among mischievous little girls Listen, I get that kids will be kids. I understand that little ones have an unthinkable amount of energy they need to expel at any given point in the day. I'm all for being wild and carefree ... I'm just not going to let that happen in my house.


For some reason, people think that because you're friendly and your kids get along, it automatically translates into parties and social gatherings at your house. Don't get me wrong, I love to get my Martha Stewart on -- which is probably what gets me in trouble, 'cause folks see the photos on social media -- but we need to have a quick talk about why I don't want your child tearing up my house.

In life, we have to audition for many things: a job, the theater, potential love interests. (The list goes on and on.) So, as a parent, why wouldn't you go on a few test runs with one of your child's friends before you open up your front door and say with a smile, "Why, make yourself at home..."?

(You might regret that.)

In the two years that we've been in Oklahoma, I've made some really nice acquaintances -- and even friendships. My 2-year-old and 9-month-old boys have enjoyed some wonderful playdates, birthday parties, and other social outings that were full of memories. While there were fun and games, as a mother, I was also using these events to peep out other kids' behavior and, more importantly, how Mom handled it.

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I have a family friend who's upset that I have yet to invite her son over for a playdate. I'm sorry, but when he constantly ends up in the emergency room for doing something he was told not to do, and tries to break everything in sight, yeah, Casa Peart isn't the best place to host him. And rather than tell Mom, "I'm sorry, your son can't come over because he ain't tearing up my house," I just look for alternatives at public destinations.

Can my kids get loud at times in public places? Yup -- they're kids. And, does it sometimes take more than once to get my toddler to a.) pay attention and b.) do what I say? You bet your sippy cup. While stuff like this is business as usual with a tot, red flags start to surface when I see LO: flipping on furniture like it's a jungle gym, destroying public or private property that isn't theirs, and not following their mother's directions -- assuming she's paying attention to what her child is doing.

I always aim to correct that behavior, because I don't want my kids to think stuff like that is acceptable. And seeing it up close and personal doesn't make me all giddy inside to extend an invitation to my abode.

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Look, I love kids; I really do. But, guess what? I also love my home And while I don't have anything that's too gaudy, or looks like it belongs in Gwyneth Paltrow's home, that doesn't mean I'm okay with other kids wrecking my stuff -- because my own kids don't do that. And, truth be told, if my kiddos were a little too rambunctious for someone's house, I wouldn't take offense to not getting invited over.

It is what it is for the time being. Perhaps things will change in the future.



Image via CREATISTA/Shutterstock

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