A sweet 6yo boy, "John," lives next door to us and is friends with my 5yo DS. John comes over to play a lot, and one time as I was watching him leave our house I noticed that instead of going back to his house, he headed toward another friend's house. I stopped him and told him to go check in with his dad first so that his dad would know where he was and not think he was still at our house. I told my DH about that, and DH started doing the same thing when John would leave our house, reminding him to go check in at home.
Well, tonight John came over and asked to play and I said no because we had family over, and I didn't even think about the whole going-to-another-neighbor's house thing and just shut the door. Then over an hour later John's grandma came over looking for him and had no idea where he'd been all that time -- she thought he was at our house! We went outside looking and she went door to door looking, and a few other neighbors came out to help, and eventually John was found at another friend's house.
His grandma seemed pretty worried and said something about how he's supposed to come home in between friends' houses so she knows where he is. Even though we all knew he was probably fine and just at another friend's house, it was scary trying to find him, and I felt guilty, like I had dropped the ball since I know this has been an issue with this boy. On the other hand, I was busy and distracted by our guests and I can't be responsible for everything, you know? I'm just glad he's safe, and I guess I'll be redoubling my efforts to make sure he goes straight home each and every time he leaves our doorstep!
DH+Me 1994 DS 2004 DD 2008 DDog 2014