Saturday, March 21, 2009

Unthinkable

Today I have an extra child. One of the 'lil gentlman's friends walked home with him to spend the night. Having lived here less than a year, I am always happy when the children form new bonds. Additionally the child that is staying with us is good natured and I am not having any problems.

Yeah, that's all good right? Maybe not so much. His friend got a little homesick and started to cry. This is his first sleepover without his older brother. I was a little cranky at the time and decided we would all feel better if I went to Kentucky's best and rewarded us all with a bucked of lard.

While driving the boys to get the chicken, my son tells me that his friend wants to see his brother who is somewhere nearby. I then find out that his parents are out of town. WTF???? I ask the child " where are your parent's at?" His response was " the north west." Well, that covers about 5 states!

As of yet, we have had no phone call nor do we have any indication that his parent even know where he is at. After putting on the nice mom face and trying to make the child feel a little more welcome, it occurs to me what serious problems we could face if the unthinkable happened.

If this child were to get sick or hurt, we would have no authority to do anything for him. We do not know where his parent's are nor do we have their phone numbers. This child would have to be declared a ward of the state to get emergency medical treatment. My daughter knows his brother and knows who he is staying with but not necessarily how to get in touch with him either.

I do blame myself for not demanding more information. I did have a suspicion that we were being elected babysitters when the child called and asked to stay over. I wrote it off as paranoia and didn't say anything. I am now kicking myself. I really do not mind the child and want all my kid's friends to feel comfortable here, but this puts a mountain of liability onto us. Liability we did not agree to!

I am not quite so sure what to say to his parents when they come collect him today. They will come collect him as I WILL NOT allow this child to leave my care without knowing he is with who he belongs to.

Really, what would you do?

5 comments:

Tara R. said...

We've had similar situations with some of my kids' friends. I am amazed at how cavalier some parents are with their children's well being. I would definitely say something, not to get the kid in trouble, but just a 'next time in case' kind of thing. At a minimum you need a cell phone number for emergencies.

Trish said...

You know, my first reaction to this story was....boy, have times changed - I was thinking back to when my boys were small, and overnighters were commonplace, and no one thought about liability.
The world is a different place now - and to not know where the parents are and how to get hold of them (which we all did, in that long ago small town when my boys were small) - is unbelievable. My heart goes out to the child who must wonder why no one cared where he went - thank God it was to your house!
I agree with Tara to put it on a 'next time we need this info' basis - God forbid the boy get the blame for the parents' thoughtlessness.

magikquilter said...

Hi jojo...i could not email you back as the email facility must be turned off....it is in the profile section and i did not know about it for my first six ,months blogging!! So I replied here...hope that is okay

I can't believe I did not read MBT for a week and that happened..I also was wondering about the whole immobilization of her arm thing as my pain clinic is very strict about use it or lose it. I wondered if she could have got a DVT out of it...it happened to my mother when she was young.

Sorry about your LP...i could not watch House for months after that experience as they all seemed to need them and so easily performed too. Do they still do milograms for spinal cord diagnosis? They are nasty too ...like you I am clastrophobic...caused by being in an MRI machine for 50 minutes with no communication at all and they cannot sedate me due to sleep apnea type issues.

I just read about your house guest...unbelievable...hope you know what to say to the parents....they should have left a phone contact at least. I guess your son won't be going to their home in a hurry

Bad Momma said...

OMG! We don't do sleepovers but my kids have occasional "playdates".

I can't imagine parents not wanting to speak to a parent at the house where their child was staying. Especially overnight! I'll be interested to hear the rest of this story....

I'd consider calling children's services if you don't hear from them the next day.

I give that one a big WTF???

Heather Dugan ("Footsteps") said...

Unbelievable. I'm really interested to hear how this all worked out.