Q: I have a neighbor who just sends her three and five year old girls out to play whenever I’m out with my kids. She never talks to me to tell me her kids are coming over, she just lets them come over unsupervised assuming I or other neighbors would be willing to watch them. What should I do because I’m not a free babysitter and the favor is never returned?
A: The next time her children arrive take them right home again. Tell her you knew she must be worried about them because they just arrived by themselves, as you would be worried about your children if they wandered off. Then wish her a good day and depart. If she says she thought they could play together, tell her that would be very nice but you are not able to supervise them all right now, and it would be great if she would call first to set up a play date so you can be sure to clear the time.