The Four Year Old Play Date

My preschooler had a friend over today. Before he arrived to play, we reviewed all of the play date rules that we have in this house. (The rules also apply to birthday parties):

-No hitting

-No kicking

-No pushing

-No screaming like a little girl. ( I honestly think my husband much prefers our son to hit other kids than to hear the high pitched screech he often makes when playing with friends)

-No tattling

(For other information on play dates, check out this book by Christie S Mellor, Three Martini Playdates)

For the most part, #1 son has no problem following the list, with the exception of no tattling. Four year olds LOVE to tattle on one another, then go back to playing. If my friends or coworkers tattled on me regularly and then expected life to go on as usual, they would be sorely mistaken and be in a line for a solid crotch punch (which I know violates other rules in our above list) But four year olds get a perverse pleasure in telling on one another, and if it gets their little friend in trouble (the Holy Grail is getting the friend in a time out), it’s even better.

When my girlfriend left with her little boy today we remarked that today was the most successful play date so far, only 2 issues of tattling, one by each boy. What caused today’s infractions? The non-sharing of a Wolverine costume and the use of a Mr. Potato Head body part as a weapon.


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