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Growing up, a lot of us had parents that never let us have sleepovers. It may have really bugged us as kids, but when was the last time you stopped to think about why?

Reddit user mephizto85 asked:

Parents of Reddit, what was a legit reason why you didn't let your son/daughter have THAT friend over/go to a sleepover?

So we may finally have some answers... but we're going to be honest with you - many of you will wish you hadn't been curious. The thing about kids is that it's often not the child's fault that they're sketchy. It comes from somewhere - somewhere a lot of us wish didn't exist. We're going to be talking a lot about parents and situations that are downright horrific and heartbreaking. Proceed with caution if those things are difficult for you. They certainly are for us.

Content Warning: the following contains talk of: suicide/self harm, abuse, violence/domestic violence/abuse, addiction, questionable parenting.

"Good To Take A Break" 

This all went down about ten years ago. The kid was on serious medication for major behavioral issues, the kid's sibling was the favorite. Parents would dump said unwanted kid at our house, without medication because "it was good to take a break" from antipsychotics.

I say "unwanted kid" because he'd come over on an empty stomach and was left for hours after the promised pickup time. He was ditched with whoever while they took the other kid out to eat and shop. They also didn't offer snacks/drinks and eventually banned reciprocal visits after we spoke up about his treatment.

It sucks that the parents were awful.

- 03CE

Weaponized Bleach


The kids mother let them go in the backyard with her 13 year old to watch them. The kid, who was 5 at the time, filled a spray bottle up with bleach secretly without anyone knowing. He then took my child behind a shed, held him down and sprayed him.

When he started screaming is when the sister realized something was up. He was drenched in bleach, his skin was irritated all over from it. I told mom he would never be allowed over there again. His mother was crying saying she couldn't control her son. My wife and I were shocked as we didn't anticipate anything like that could happen on a play date.

Our little guy is very sensitive and took it very hard. He told me when I was taking him to school that he didn't want to play with him anymore and that hes not a nice person and makes him cry.

I should emphasize this kid is also 5, and slightly younger than ours. He walked down to our house by himself one day, and I told him he is not welcome in our house. He asked why and I told him it was because he does bad things. I then walked him back home, no one in his house even knew he had left!

I told his mom that our child would no longer be playing with him, she said that I was being overly dramatic and that they were just kids. I told her that if she thinks this is "kid behavior" she was in for a rough life when he gets older. I also reminded her she said herself that she couldn't control him and he's 5. What does she think is going to happen as he gets older? She didn't say anything. I told her to let her son know to not knock on our door again.

- boston_2004

"I Said She's Staying" 

My parents went to drop off my stuff at a friends house because I wanted to spend the night. They walked in, and my dad said "Nope you're coming home." She had two brothers; one was super nice, one was very touchy. My dad wasn't comfortable at all.

Her dad then threatened my dad and said:
"You can't take a child out of my home. This is my home, and I said she's staying."

Like my friend's dad thought he somehow owned me because I was in his house? I'm pretty sure this was basically kidnapping. My dad, being 6'3 and a large dude, got in his face (her dad looked like a string bean) and said he was taking me home right now. My dad told me later he had a really bad gut feeling something bad would have happened if I stayed.

Her brother is in jail now.

- holli_pop

Early Warnings

I was a situation that set off my early warning senses. We were staying at an acquaintance's house. She had a 3 year old son. My daughter was 5. They played well together, but I got some weird vibes that told me that my daughter shouldn't be crashing in the living room in a sleeping bag. I had her sleep with my wife in the guest bed while I slept on the couch. I kept a close watch on the kids the rest of the evening.

The next day as we were leaving, the 3 year-old basically tackled my daughter (he was big, she was very small) and tried to mount and hump her on the floor. I extracted her and told him that wasn't appropriate. My daughter laughed it off as him trying to "wrestle" with her. Once in the car I told my wife under no circumstances would our daughter ever be allowed back in that house, ever. She agreed.

- tweakingforjesus

Old Habits Die Hard


He was a little kleptomaniac. He came over exactly 3 times to hang out. Each time something would go missing, No more visits. Found out recently he was recently charged with embezzlement at the company he used to work for!!

- bluegirl1965

Harboring A Runaway

I no longer allowed my son's best friend to come to our place or for him to go over to his after the best friend's mom reported us to the police as harboring a runaway. This was after the best friend had been tossed out of his mom's house and told to spend the night sleeping outside AND she'd refused our phone calls to find out what was going on.

So yes, I wasn't going to let a 16-year-old spend the night in 30 degree weather with nowhere to go, sue me. The cops showed up, said she'd reported us as harboring a runaway. We explained what was happening and got treated like dirt and told that from now on we had to have full permission from the mom. Fine. We urged my son's friend to go to the police, report to them what was happening, and left it at that.

The mom tried to apologize three days later as "being off her meds" and say it was okay for my son to go to their house and vice versa. The way she said "vice versa" felt like a trap, so I politely refused and hung up while she was screaming at me. I'd always been kind of uncomfortable with the woman and that just sealed it. They were still friends at school, but there were no more hanging out at either one's house and I explained why and they both agreed to the rules.

I hated it, because he and my son were part of a big group of kids that would all hang out at each other's houses all the time. Suddenly I had to worry about this woman freaking out or doing something to my son if he was over there or accusing us again if my son's friend came to our house.

Fortunately there was a third friend who this kid's mom was not mad at yet, so they'd all meet up over there. I warned them about it and the dad who was military basically nicely asked and recorded this kid's mom consent every time without her knowledge since we live in a one-party state. He told me, "Yeah, let her send my cousin who works at the PD to my house to tell me I'm harboring a runaway."

The son is in the military now and doing quite well and no longer has contact with his mother. Gee, I wonder why.

- landho54

A's Dad

My daughter is not allowed to stay at "A's" house and "A" can only come to ours during the day but never overnight.. We allowed her to stay the night there 1 time last year and the stories that came back from a single night were completely unacceptable. Here are a few...

1. The dad has a room that no one is allowed to go in, not even the mom. When he is going into it or coming out of it he knocks on the door and everyone has to look in the other direction. The windows of that room are even blocked out with black trash bags. A said she has seen the inside of the room before and there is just a couch, a TV and a XBOX1. I don't care. My daughter is never going to go there.

2. The dad also apparently has lots of "friends" that visited all through the night. Most friends never actually came in the house. None of them knocked on the front door. The dad would either get a message or just know they were there and hangout with them for a little while by their back door.

3. In the morning, before I picked my daughter up her and A were outside playing with the dogs. My daughter is well mannered and when A's dad asked her if she had put her breakfast plate away she answer "yes, sir." Well, apparently, what he heard was "yes, sergeant" and it royally pissed him off. He started screaming at A that her friends are disrespectful and that my daughter wasn't allowed back in his house. He then referred to himself in third person as "Sergeant" for the rest of the day and I am told it was until way after my daughter was gone. A told my daughter at school that it had all been straightened out and her dad felt bad about the misunderstanding and wants her to come stay the night again and will take them 4-wheeler riding in the woods as an apology. First of all, they don't have 4-wheelers so how is this even possible? Secondly, there is no way is my daughter going out in the woods with this guy.

If you are wondering, no he did not let my daughter back in the house after he kicked her out. A had to pack up her things for her, which her dad watched her do to make sure she wasn't taking anything of theirs. When I got there, they were sitting outside. I had no idea why nor did I think anything of it till I got the previously mentioned story.

Also, what was packed up for my daughter as "her stuff" was not all of her stuff and we had to make a run to the store later for a toothbrush and her shampoo. She also didn't get any of her dirty clothes back and A insisted at school that she couldn't find anything else of my daughter's at their house. hmmmmm.

The mom also did not speak the whole night. She just watched TV and would get up to get something for her husband or make him dinner but she didn't speak to A or my daughter and she also did not make them any food. They had some popcorn for "dinner" and made their own breakfast in the morning.

These girls were 16 at the time. I wish my daughter would have called me to say things were a bit odd. I would have come to get her sooner. Since this incident, we now have a code message because she said she didn't know what to say even if she did call me. So now if something is amiss and she is uncomfortable she is to call or message me asking when her next orthodontist appointment is. It lets me think of the reason she has to be picked up and she does not have to feel awkward or in anyway disrespectful. I have also told her it is perfectly acceptable to just say she wants to go home, but I also understand where that can escalate an already bad situation.

Now for why A can't stay the night at our house: Because the one time she did spend the night at our house, her dad would call her randomly, even at 4 am. She missed the call once around 12:30 am and immediately called him back. He was already in his car driving to our house to get her because she didn't answer and I had to listen to a teenager talk her own dad out of a screaming rage. It was disgusting and I am not going to have that around my daughter.

I have not stated as much to my daughter but I am perfectly happy that her and A do not hang out anymore. I have been told that Child Services does have an open and ongoing file about their household, at least as of March of this year. I wish I had known before this all happened, but I am just glad I know now and that my daughter was open enough with me to tell me and I pray that there isn't more that happened that she didn't.

- 11twenty2

The Fire Trap

My friend and her sister could sleep at our house but my sister and I couldn't sleep at theirs. In college I figured it out - their house was a fire trap. Pathways between stuff like a hoarder's house, the bathtub was full of dirty water constantly, you had to move stuff just to use the toilet, the stairs to the basement (where we would've slept) covered in clothes and only one way out of the basement - the windows were to small to crawl out of if you were larger than an average two year old.

Saw the inside of the house years later and it was like a different house. They had a piano in the living room that I'd never seen before because it was just covered in hoarder crap.

- Notmykl

Not Allowed At Home

The girl was completely disrespectful to our home and honestly too old to be constantly hanging out with out daughter. The girl is 12, our daughter is six. She'd constantly leave trash all outside, on our stairs, inside our couch, floor to where the baby can all over our carpets. She didn't care. It didn't matter how much we would ask her not to do it.

At the last and final sleepover, she invited a kid we didn't know to stay with her too. I felt bad because the girl was younger. Until it was 1am and they were blasting music, yelling, and dancing (we live on the 2nd floor) We told them to go to bed and at 730am they were up to the same exact thing.

She started coming over first thing in the morning, staying until late at night. I told her if she was hungry, she had to go home and eat and come back as we didn't have enough food to feed everyone. My husband has been out of work and we're really struggling financially. She only lives 2 doors down, but wouldn't go. Whatever snacks we had for our 3 kids were gone in a day because she ate everything.

Then we found out the why behind all of this.

Come to find out..she "wasn't allowed at home" while her mom was at work. Mom's 24-year-old boyfriend didn't have a job and was at home. The girl was "getting boobs" so mom didn't want to be home alone with him.

There's so much wrong with that statement, but it's what was said. We live in the Arizona heat, so if we weren't home the poor kid would be stuck walking around the complex in the heat. No one else lets her and friends inside because of their behavior - but now that we know what's going in it's perfectly obvious why she was acting out.

And sorry to say, but if mom doesn't trust them alone..why would she trust him when she's there? Many cases of abuse happen when someone is in the other room! It's wrong all around. You do not keep someone around your kids if you can't trust them around them at all times, any given situation.

Just last week the mom sent her to another state for a bit, my daughter misses her... but it's been nice not having my place full of kids (she'd bring friends all the time) all day every single day and eating all the food we don't have. I'm honestly thankful she sent her kids away (Yes, plural. She had already sent her 8-year-old away before this.) for a while. Maybe she'll smarten up before they come back.

- mommywifelife4


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