I am entering new territory and could use some advice. My preschool son is starting to make new friends of his own from his classroom. A few of his little buddies have asked him to come over for a playdate, which is exciting and scary at the same time. Thrilled that he is advancing socially, I am nervous to let him go over to a friend's house where I don't know the parents at all. I could care less about snacks or sugary drinks but I wonder what the mom's disciplinary style may be or how she deals with her children. Heaven forbid she's a closet drinker like that woman who drove drunk and killed all of those innocent children. I don't want to be a helicopter parent but I don't want to regret anything, either.
— Scared to Be Helicopter Mom
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Scared to Be Helicopter Mom,
Your concerns are natural and admirable — you are looking out for your child's best interest. An easy way to solve your problem is to have an initial mommy and child playdate where the boys can play together, and you can get to know the other mother. During that time, you can chat and try to figure out where she stands on some issues. If she talks a big game of drinking or partying, it may be an indicator that you need a few more dual-parent supervised dates or that you need to host the playdates. Another idea is to organize a social event for a group of the moms so you can get to know them outside of your children. It will help you feel better about leaving them in their care and vice versa. More than anything, you should trust your intuition. It's always better to be safe than sorry.
— Mommy Dearest
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