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Cosmopolitan Moms: Ladies Toast The Notion Of Play Dates

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By Mia Bolaris-Forget

My generation never had a “play dates”, at least not an official one. In fact, if we wanted to play with other children on our block, or in our neighborhood, we simply went outside, and there generally was someone there. If not, we could simply walk down a few houses (yes, even “unsupervised) and ring someone’s doorbell, asking if we could either come in or if our friend was available to come out and play.

And, by the time I got around to babysitting, “informal” play dates had begun to take shape. But, they, more often than not, involved me, and one of my BFFs, or the guy I was dating taking the kid down to the park or the mall and then for some ice cream. Sometimes, it simply meant being at home with the child while one of his or her friends came over, and it was my job to supervise between homework and phone calls.

Welcome to the millennium where play dates now involve moms and often times martinis.

In fact, these days, the sandbox, teeter-totter and swing set are conveniently constructed in the comforts of mom’s own backyard, and, right alongside a heated pool and Jacuzzi.

Plus, there’s always the option for hiring someone to “chaperone” the children while career women, frequently turned full-time moms, unwind perhaps with a glass of wine and some good conversation. Or, how about some lattes and biscotti? And, if you’re thinking about showing up in some comfortable loungewear (aka, sweat pants or a house dress) think again. That style went out with the Sonny and Cher show. In fact, skinny jeans and an immaculate abode are what today’s mom’s consider play date chic. And, it’s all part of giving back mom some personal time and space she gave up when she decided to have kids. And, it’s all part of ensuring her independence, individuality, “womanhood” and sanity.

But, is the question remains is winning and dining acceptable when your kids are in your care and whinning and dallying. According to the moral majority, though fairly split down the middle, most said “no”.

The key concern is while perhaps just a glass or two over an extended play period may be fine, more than that may impair your judgement, attention and ability to look after your child. And, unless there is someone (as mentioned previously) to chaperone, who will take charge and action in case there’s an emergency or someone gets hurt. Then, there’s always the issue of social vs. problem drinking. In fact, some experts suggest that alcohol is often used as a coping mechanism, and even go as far as adding that most moms wouldn’t accept similar behavior from a hired caregiver. And, that they suggest is a blatant double standard.

But, mom’s say these “designed for adult play dates” give them back a significant part of their life that they “loved” and may have lost. Even if they continue to work, many moms just don’t have the time to socialize and this gives them that opportunity, while also spending time with their children, and allowing “them” to cultivate “their” social skills, by interacting with “their peers”. And, that they suggest is the key benefit. The occasional glass of alcohol is just an added perk, and not necessarily essential.

Long Island Family Life & Parenting Articles > Cosmopolitan Moms: Ladies Toast The Notion Of Play Dates

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