I have to wonder if there’s a play date prejudice against working mothers. Do our kids not get invited for play dates because their friends’ mothers can’t drop them off until after we get home? And of course, after school playdates can’t be reciprocated, because we’re working.
My sons are around the ages where they should be having play dates often. However, the ones they have aren’t even close to as frequent as the ones I used to have as a kid. When I was growing up, I think I had play dates with my friends almost every day after school. We’d go to each others houses or hang out at a park in nice weather. I had a couple of friends with whom I was really close. We’d have slumber parties all the time, as well.
I know my son’s have friends in their classes at school. I even received a request from the mom of one of M’s friends recently to have a play date. I explained to her that I work and couldn’t pick him up until later. It wasn’t going to work for her, so the plans have been tabled for now.
On Shabbat, the boys will often request to have a play date with one of their friends. Sometimes they make these plans and not all parents are informed. That usually leads to confusion and a child getting upset. We can’t call each other on Shabbat, so we just make plans with families nearby and sometimes do the walk around the neighborhood where we knock on doors to see who is around. In the winter, the days are shorter before Shabbat ends. Luckily, since Daylight Savings occurred, there will soon be more time in the day for play dates.
I hope that my sons will have the opportunity for more play dates soon, as I feel it is really important for them to spend time with friends outside of school and on weekends. I don’t think that my work schedule should be a reason that would keep their friends’ parents from wanting to coordinate these play dates.
Any suggestions for how to make this possible in a world of crazy schedules?