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Neighbours and playing outside ?

Question:

I grew up in the country. The side of a mountain in Sligo to be slightly more precise.
Now we live in a housing estate in Dublin.
DS1 is 5 and just started school in September and very recently has made friends with a little boy from 2 houses down the road. We've only been living here for a year and don't know the boys parents any more than to say hello to.
I'm not comfortable with him playing out on the road. We don't have a front garden. There is a bit of grass accross the road but not really what you'd call a green. I've let him out a couple of times but can't see where they are most of the time so am not allowing him out at the moment. it isn't a cul de sac and though it is quiet enough there would be a few cars passing by.
Am I being over protective ?
Because I didn't grow up in an urban area I am questioning my judgement on this.
Any insights ?
Thanks
Answers:
Hi DB, no i dont think you are being op, my ds is 10 and he goes out to play - theres a small playground beside us or they play football but that only since he would have been 7/8 - but at 5 i think its way to young esp if you cant see them, i have a dd whos 3 and i dread when she wants to play out - i would have no prob with friends coming over and them playing out back garden or in house, it is hard if they want to go out and there are cars around - but you can never be too careful. hth
Answers:
The 5yo's near me don't play on the green or outside unattended, so going by that I'd say you are right. But my eldest is not yet 4yo, so I can't say what I would do as yet myself. I would have no notion of letting him play out the front, on the road or on the green anytime soon, lets just say that. He'll be 4 in March. Quiet cul de sac here too.
Answers:
My DS is nearly 6, we live in a very quiet cul de sac, but whenever he is out, be it playing football in the green across from our house, or cycling up and down on bike, I would always be out with him. Would never let him out unsupervised. The same goes for all the parents on our road, always out with their kids.
Answers:
Id let him out alright but like others have said would be out there too.... we have a green across from us and I let mine out to play where I can see them and I am a 'wall mum'!! Feel a bit of a prat when no one else is out but usually a few mums/dads would be out watching too so we have a chat! and I suppose thats how I got to know my neighbours, so an added bonus!
Answers:
I live in a cul-de-sac. I let DS out from age 4 if I was out or if other parents were out. We all looked out for each others children iykwim? He was also very good at staying within his boundries. As time went on he was allowed further and with less supervision. He's 8 now and I let him out, only checking every now and again.
DDs are 4.5 and have never been out unattended. There's not many parents of younger children now so I'd have to go out with them all the time. It will be a long time before I can let them out without me.
Answers:
thanks so much for your replies really appreciate it ...now I have to figure out what to do about the little lad calling in at all hours every day
Answers:
Hi Db2, I completely get where ur coming from. I too grew up in the "sticks" and now am living in a housing estate. I have little boy, (6), he too is friends with little boy same age 2 doors up. I let him out to play when other children are out kicking ball etc,but I'm like a jack in the box, looking out the window every few minutes to make sure he's ok. If he's out on his bike, or on his own, I go out with him. Now I don't want to stop the fun or isolate him or anything of course, but we have our routine, and my little boy gets home from school at 3pm, this other little boy finishes at 1pm, and as soon as we arrive home, he's often at the door. My little lad hasnt even had a snack, changed out of uniform or even started homework, so I had to say one day, he's not ready to play yet, but as soon as he's ready I'll send him over, and that worked. Also if he goes over to them I always insist he's home by 6pm latest, as I want us all to have tea together as a family, and I send other little lad home by 6pm too. Might sound regimented, but then everyone knows where the boundries are and we all get along great now as we all respect each others routines etc. I know folks prob think I'm a control freak ( I am a bit)!! but your home is your castle, and you have to be able to say to people what works and what dosn't. Obviously if someone calls on spec come on in and have cuppa or whatever, but if someone is living only beside u then it can get out of hand and be an all day every day set up and it's very hard to dial it back once it gets into a habit. I think you have to welcome their friends in, but on ur terms, there's a home time for kids and stick to it.
My DH grew up in a town so he thinks it's all grand to be coming and going at all times, but it drives me nuts.
Good luck, let us know how you get on.
Answers:
I would say depends on the child. DD1 has played outside since she was 4. She is 6 now. She was always very good to know where and when she can go outside. It does help we have a massive front garden, which is in a cul de sac and all the kids tend to congregate there. All her friends (all girls) are very good also and they will not go beyond the green, very good around the roads etc.
I keep an eye out when she is on the green but I don't hover, as it tended to drive her mad.
There is no need anymore. When she first went out at aged 4 I was always out when she was out, but since aged 5, no.
DD2 however, almost 3, will be more of a challenge, when she is bigger, she sees playing outside, (always under my supervision obviously at this age) as a bolt for freedom away from the estate..
Kat

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