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Thursday, May 24, 2012

3 Ways to Spot and Stop Your Daughter's Frenemy

"Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Can I spend the night at So&So's house?" "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Can I go over So&So's for dinner?" "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! So&So's birthday party is coming up, can I go?" 

Wow! This So&So girl is all your daughter can talk about! It's great news that she's found a new friend and you'd certainly like to meet her. One day, you invite So&So over and she's as cute as a button. But there is something off-putting about the way she is around your daughter. That peculiar feeling about her may be your mommy instinct telling you that your daughter's got a frenemy on her hands.

A frenemy is a slang term combining the words friend and enemy together. A frenemy hangs out with your little one but sometimes does or says things a real friend shouldn't. Here's a list of 3 ways to spot a frenemy and 3 ways to stop one.

1."That's stupid!"
Your daughter and her friend are sitting around deciding what to do to have fun. Say your daughter suggests playing freeze tag or another type of game to play. Rather than simply declining, her friend says, "That's stupid!" Do not allow put-downs. Tell your daughter's friend that the appropriate way to respond is by saying "I don't feel like doing that" and that ridiculing other people's opinions is not okay. By stopping it immediately, firmly but respectfully your daughter's friend should be able to understand how to respond correctly from now on.

2. He Said, She Said
Your daughter certainly admires her friend. But it is somewhat strange how your daughter likes something "because Ashley likes it" or wanting to do something because "Ashley wants to do it" or not doing something because "Ashley says she hates doing that." If your daughter's friend is taking charge of everything they do and your daughter is not getting any say, you want to make sure your daughter is not being controlled by her friend. That can set her up to be confused about what she wants and can set her up to be completely dependent on others. Be sure to monitor their activities and conversations to ensure that your daughter's voice is being heard and that they are both happy with their play time.

3. "Mommy, She Hit Me..."
This should be a no-brainer. If your daughter is claiming her friend hit her, that is a sure sign that your daughter has a frenemy and a bully. At this point, try to have a meeting with the child's parents to discuss what happened with the girls and how to move forward to ensure that violence does not happen between them again. Of course, if the parent and/or the child can not see eye to eye or the abuse continues, it will be best for your daughter to find friends who know how to keep their hands and negative comments to themselves.

Has your daughter ever come across a frenemy? Has your daughter ever been a frenemy? What happened and how did you handle it? Let us know in the comments below.

Best wishes,


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