How to handle pushy mom who is too into your kid & wants a sleepover?

Joanne - posted on 05/16/2017 ( 3 moms have responded )

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This is a long question but I really need some advice. So, please hang in there.
My 12 year daughter has made a new friend. They are on the same sports team and have been seeing each other at practices for the last few months. I briefly met her parents a few times. We had the girl over for a sleepover three times and it went well. The girls had fun and she was sweet and polite. My daughter spent the afternoon at the other girls house but we said no to a sleepover because we had plans the next day.
And, now things have gotten weird. The mother has asked my daughter to call her “second mom” and is really affectionate and over the top in her interactions with my daughter. We walked into practice yesterday and the mother ran toward my daughter and hugged her and picked her up. She rubs her back when she stands near her. She mindlessly runs her fingers through my daughters hair and compliments her almost obsessively. She barely knows my daughter or our family so I find this invasive. My daughter likes all the attention and feeling like such a superstar friend, but it bothers me. Something seems off. I have not seen this mom behave this way with any of the other girls on the team.
So now the awkward part. This mother has called and texted me and asked me in person several times for my daughter to sleepover at her house and I have made small excuses that it isn’t’ a good time, we have a family party, etc. She is VERY pushy about it even after I politely give enough reasons that most would get the hint. Yesterday, she approached me and was upset because my daughter had a sleepover with another friend the weekend before and I simply said, “yes, I told you she had already made plans.” She whipped out her phone and said “we need to calendar something right now, even if it’s a few weeks from now…she can’t be busy every weekend”. I said I didn’t have my phone and bolted to my car. Now this Mom is talking directly to my daughter telling her how she feels so bad for her and that I’m so unfair and controlling. WTF! I get the feeling that her daughter may not have a lot of friends so she has grabbed on to my daughter.
My daughter has rotating sleepovers with 6 families that we know well and feel comfortable with so it’s been very upsetting to her that I pulled back from this family and said no. It just feels odd and so forced. I think the Mom wants the sleepover more than her daughter…the daughter has never asked me. Tonight my daughter was in tears asking for reasons why she can’t sleepover there. All I could come up with was that I just wasn’t comfortable but her friend was welcome to stay at our house again. Of course, this didn’t satisfy her so we are having a lot of drama over it. Has anyone seen this behavior from another Mom? Am I over reacting? We need to see this family at practice 3 times a week so I think it’s going to get even more awkward. How do I sent boundaries and get her to back off from my daughter and the sleepover invites? She knows my daughter is allowed to have sleepovers so she just wont let it go. I don’t want to hurt the Mom’s feelings and I don’t want my daughter to keep arguing with me about this. Any advice is appreciated!

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Sarah - posted on 05/19/2017

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Does your daughter want to go? Do you trust this family? If you have an inkling of doubt then you just say no. You do not have to offer a reason. She can go to any sleepover anywhere and not to this girl's house if that is what makes you comfortable. Will it cause bad blood? Probably but you have to trust your gut. Maybe, you could suggest that you four get together at their house, order pizza, watch a movie, paint nails and then when it is late and the girls are ready for bed; you leave. Make sure your child has a phone with her to call you if she needs you.
I don't do sleepovers. Kids can come to my house but my kids don't go to theirs; I simply told the parents I have baggage from my childhood. there will always be that one mom who wants to be called mom, and be the bestie to every child.

Michelle - posted on 05/18/2017

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I agree it is very unusual behaviour. She does need to back off a bit but also you said that her daughter has stayed at your house a few times so I see it as only fair that your daughter stay there.
Maybe you need to meet up with the Mother, maybe for coffee, and talk to her about her actions towards your daughter. Ask her why she is overly obsessive over your daughter. Meet at a time where you don't have the children and not at practice either.

Ev - posted on 05/18/2017

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It sounds like harassment from what you have put here. Have you asked the mother directly about why she is so adamant that your child come sleep over at her house?

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