It’s tough to find good friends as adults and it’s even tougher to find adults we actually trust with our children. So many times, we think we have found the perfect people. We get to know them, spend time with them, dinners, park play times. It takes a lot of time to build up trust.
When my daughter was four, I had these really nice neighbors that lived right behind us. Our kids were the same age, our husbands were in similar jobs, and the mom and I actually liked each other! This was huge for me, because I hadn’t really trusted anyone other than grandparents with my kids, but what could a little playdate practically in my backyard hurt? And so, I started letting my daughter play over there. Our girls spent a lot of time together, and they both really seemed to enjoy it.
Well, one day hubs and I were thinking of redoing our master bathroom. Our houses had the same floor plan as the neighbors, so we asked them if we could see what they’d done in theirs. We walked up their stairs, to their master, and there on the nightstand was her husband’s loaded gun.
Our kids were four. How many times had my daughter played there?
Why didn’t I think to ask? My husband said, “is that a gun? Is it loaded”
Her husband responded, “Of course. Gotta stay safe.”
And there we were. I’ve never felt more inadequate as a mom, just because I never asked. Why didn’t I think to ask?
Should we ask these hard questions? The kinds of questions that determine life or death for our kids? Is it our place to judge someone based on their life choices? If it involves our lives, of course we should. But how do we ask? What do we ask?
When do we ask? Should we ask if there are guns in the house before our kids ever walk in? Should we ask to see the safety precautions and measures people have in place? How do we know?