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nice kids...but icky parents

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

What do you do when your kids are friends with kids that have icky parents?  How do you put up with the unwanted parental interaction for the sake of your kids?  Or maybe you don't?


Ugh.  Ever since I have had kids, there are so many people out there that I just wouldn't cross paths with in my life.  It can be VERY uncomfortable at times.


Thoughts?  Suggestions?  Solutions?  Funny stories....do tell.



My use of "icky" means: emotional issues, strange habits, general oddness, etc.

post #2 of 8

This made me laugh, but I haven't run into this situation yet. I'm sure I'll get there. I have had the experience of really liking certain people as friends, but hardly being able to stand their significant other/spouse. In the past I've put up with the extras to hang out with the ones I like, so I'm sure I'll do the same for my kids, but I can see how it might be tough.

post #3 of 8
I've run into this a few times and I am polite and friendly but don't seek out a friendship. I really couldn't stand one of her friend's moms at first but they have been friends for three years and it has become easier. She is really very nice and I am glad I didn't do anything to end the friendship.

I think it is important to keep in mind that you are also the odd parent to somebody, probably the parent you think is odd, you may at some time be that parent with emotional issues or strange habits. Some people may groan on the inside anytime they have to contact you because it means they must endure a conversation with somebody icky. As an odd parent I absolutely guarantee this is true. Treating others the way you want to be treated is a good rule to live by.
post #4 of 8
I live in a super crunchy town, but for some reason my neighborhood is full of parents who are VERY different than me! The worst is when they are disciplining their kid in a way that is totally ridiculous in my mind, such as "if you hit him I'm going to spank you." REALLY??? Ick!!!!

But now some crunchy parents have moved up the street. :-) YAY!!!!
post #5 of 8

I'm would probably be considered one of those 'icky' parents you speak of.  I have a lot of social anxiety and am often perceived as 'odd' despite my best efforts not to be.  My 6 YO is really struggling at school to makes friends because of it and it breaks my heart.  I feel like I'm not crunchy enough to fit in with the crunchy club but I'm no where near main stream either.  I don't fit into any sort of box at all. I am doing my best to come out of my shell and find a way to get my daughter play dates, but it isn't easy for me.  Most people who take the time to get to know me just a little find I'm very nice.  That may be the case for the 'icky' people you speak of as well.  I'm with One_Girl,  Treat others the way you would want to be treated. 

post #6 of 8
I'm pretty sure I'm icky too. But I took the OP to mean icky as in bad parenting or creepy. I actually tend to gravitate to folks who may be considered odd socially, even though I am very extroverted. I've always been like that.
post #7 of 8

I'd look at it as dealing with co-workers you don't get along with. You don't have to make friends, you just have to be polite and do your best to work together towards the common goal of facilitating your children's social development.


The real issue is if you're genuinely not comfortable letting your children stay with the other family (so can't allow play dates over there unless you can go as well, which means more interaction with the people you don't like, no sleepovers, no letting them take your child on an outing, etc)- and that can be tricky to navigate without offending the other parents and possibly ending the friendship.

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

It is true -- this is like a coworker situation -- except for the kid part.


In one particular situation, I am dealing with a pretty mean Mom.  But, my kids like her kids.  It has been uncomfortable for me, to say the least.  I always try to be nice and respectful to everyone I meet or interact with -- because I would like the same in return.  However, this Mom doesn't see it the same way.  She has taken a lot of insulting jabs at me over the last several years and I have been feeling very badly about it.  The jabs happen so swiftly that there is no time to react.  I have only just started grappling with this and am now learning to stand up for myself.  I have never experienced this before -- not growing up, not at work, not anywhere.  So, I didn't even understand what was happening except that I was becoming sad and depressed.  On some level I think this person is jealous of me and she is trying to punish me.  I am not competitive or confrontational....so she has been successful.  Not anymore though...


There have been a couple other Moms that have gotten the boot from my life as well.  One, was from many years ago when we were new Moms.  Everything was wonderful and we were in touch almost every day.  I was so happy.  Thought I found a friend for life.  Then, she started criticizing my parenting style.  The criticism moved onto other things....like the way my home was decorated and even the food I ate.  For my Birthday, she presented me with a can of resin.  Yes, resin.  Because she insisted that my kitchen table needed to be refinished.  :(


After that strangeness, I joined a Moms playgroup.  I met another lovely Mom there and again, happiness.  In short, she turned out to be very needy.  In fact, once she and her husband learned about my husband, they really only wanted to spend time with him.  My husband is both handy and very technology literate.  They couldn't get enough of him.  They wanted his advice on everything.  That branched into asking for other things, esp. when they were ready to remodel their home.  They were unable to make any decisions about anything.  It was terribly painful for all involved, esp. the contractor that we had helped locate.  OY.  After the remodel, I stopped answering the phone.  Best decision ever.


But, these experiences and even more that I haven't shared here, though painful, have been helpful.  I have used them to talk to my kids about the different kinds of people out there and which ones to be careful with.  It has also made me a stronger person.

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