This week our household has been experiencing some friendship issues and it’s hard to know where to begin in explaining to kids ‘what makes a good friend’. I always find myself on the negative, telling them that someone is not your friend if:
– they make fun of or tease you
– they make you feel bad when you hang out together etc.
But last night we had a good discussion turned on its head, looking at the things we think make a good friend. In no particular order, these came from all the kids:
– someone who respects what I think or say
– someone who makes me feel good or happy when we play
– someone who doesn’t say mean things about me to my other friends
– someone who doesn’t tease me
– someone who lets me choose what to play sometimes
– someone that I can trust
– someone who helps me if I am stuck or feeling sad
– someone who is nice to me and kind
We rounded it out recognising that we should be nice to everyone, ‘treat others as we would like to be treated ourselves’. We should stick up for our friends if someone is being mean to them and we should walk away if someone is not being a good friend.
Having good friends, however near or far, is an important part of my life. Good friends can be fantastic, but I also remember school days when your friendship group was so important to your self-esteem and confidence. Charlie experiences very different issues to the girls which makes dealing with them all a minefield!