The Sassy Housewife is a weekly Saturday advice column on Momaha.com by Danielle Herzog, a married mother of two. She’ll cover adventures in housewifery — parenting, entertaining and the interests of a been-there-done-that and somewhat-know-it-all wife.
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Dear Sassy Housewife,
My best friend and I have been friends for more than 20 years. When we got pregnant at the same time years ago we were so excited to have kids the same age that would play and grow up together. However, I’m in a tough situation now. I’ll just say this bluntly. Her 7-year-old daughter is a brat. My daughter is the same age and watching them play together is painful. My BFF’s daughter is rude, bossy and has even hit my child. What do you do when your love your friend but can’t stand her kid?
Best Friend Funk
Did your daughter hit her back? Is it wrong that I’m kind of hoping she did? Yeah, that’s probably better that she didn’t. However, I really wouldn’t blame the girl if she did. But I know, violence is never the answer. Blah blah blah.
The first thing I would try is talking to your daughter about standing up for herself. Before you go cancelling play dates, maybe it’s time to talk to your daughter about how to handle those situations. If your daughter doesn’t like the way a friend is talking to her, she could say, “I really don’t want to play with someone who acts like how you are acting right now.” You can teach her how to express her frustrations.
If in a few play dates, nothing is changing, perhaps it is time to take a little time apart from the kids playing together. Try just spending grown up time together with your BFF and keep the kid activities to a minimum.
Be cautious in how you speak to your friend about her daughter’s actions. You can’t take those words back, so choose them wisely. Just let her know the facts, NOT your opinion on it. If you’re complaining about her daughter being a brat, I think a mute approach might be best.
The reality is that all kids go through phases where they are a brat. Don’t give up on your friend’s daughter – I’m guessing she’ll be out of this phase in a bit. Heck, when I think about how I acted as a little girl sometimes, I can’t believe my own family wanted to play with me, let alone friends.
Give it time and some distance and I think your play date paths will cross again. And if they don’t, don’t sweat it – you two are the best friends, your kids don’t have to be.
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