Our house is a revolving door of children. Someone should have told me when you have a kid, the number of additional children you will eventually need to take care of somehow multiplies by three. Like gremlins, but hungrier. And while I love that our three kids bring friends to our house to hang out, the assortment of personalities can get a bit overwhelming at times. Allow me to elaborate.
1. The Kid with No Rules
These are the kids whose parents set zero boundaries for them at home so they come to your home assuming the same rules, or lack thereof, also apply. They will sail through their entire lives believing the rules don’t apply to them. These are also the kids who your kids will think are the coolest kids in school. You know they aren’t. Eventually your kids figure it out, too. Until then kid, get your feet OFF MY TABLE.
2. The Polite Kid (AKA: your kid at other people’s houses — at least, that’s what I tell myself)
These are the kids that will make you wonder where you went wrong with your own kids. No matter how hard you try, your kid will never be as awesome as this kid. One of my son’s friends routinely begins his visit to our home by coming into whatever room I am in to ask me how my week is going.
Hell, I kind of want to be friends with him, too.
3. The Troublemaker
This is the kid who you end up speaking to through gritted teeth for the entirety of their visit. You find them jumping on your bed. You overhear them trying to talk your kid into lighting his fart on fire. These are the kids that leave our house and my husband inevitably looks at me and whispers, “Wow, that kid was a little a**hole.”
I apologize in advance to the parent, but my kid will be busy the next time you call to set up a playdate. And forever after that.
4. The One Upper
We all know these adults. Apparently this charming personality trait starts early in life. I was at the park with my 5-year-old and his friend the other day, and my son said, “Look how high I can swing!” To which his friend replied, “Last time I was on that swing, I swung just a little bit higher.” And then I kicked his friend in the shin and we all lived happily ever after. I’m kidding. I would never do such a thing. Most likely.
5. The Judger
A slightly more advanced version of The One Upper, this kid comes into your home and judges you for your choices. “My mommy only buys organic.” “My mommy doesn’t allow screen time before dinner.” “My mommy hasn’t slept in the same bed as my daddy in months.” Oh wait, maybe that last one was in my head.
6. The Kid Who May as Well Be Your Kid
These are usually the kids who have been around the longest, the neighborhood crew. They’ve been friends with your kid for as long as you can remember. They enter your home without knocking. You inadvertently set an extra place for them at dinner. Your kids don’t even have to ask you if they can sleep over. They know the rules and you feel completely comfortable yelling at them at the same octave you yell at your own children. But they actually listen to you. So you love them just a little bit more.