I responded with the usual: "Who are they? Where will you be trick or treating? What time?" And then gave him the usual noncomittal "We'll see." My fall back delaying tactic.
A few weeks ago, he asked if he could go with some of his friends to a football game. Luckily, we had other plans that evening, so I could answer no without having to delve into the whys and why nots.
Also, my daughter, who goes to the same school, has not one but two invitations to slumber parties, again from friends I do not know.
So I've been thinking about my gut level HELL NO responses to all of this, which leads me to the following questions:
- Is it a problem that I do not want to let my middle schoolers go to football games, slumber parties, or trick or treating with their new friends?
- What am I really afraid of? Am I really one of those mothers who would rather they never went out into the world and met new people and found themselves in new territory? (yes)
- The fact that I don't want them to go: does this mean I am inordinately suspicious about people in general?
- Will my suspiciousness towards all of humanity rub off on my children, thereby turning them into paranoid sociopaths?
- Will they take care of me in my old age if I never, ever let them go anywhere now?
- Do I have enough children that I can "play the odds" and bank on the fact that at least ONE of them will take care of me, regardless of the choices I make right now?
- Where is the nearest cloister? And will they take boys?
Give me back my toddlers, please. All this fledgling independence is giving me heart palpitations.
Also? I need more delaying tactics. They are on to "we'll see."
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