I have a new mom friend who I really like a lot. We have the same sense of humor, the same outlook on life and really have a good time together, but only when we are alone together. This is because her children are the most belligerent, disrespectful kids I have ever met. My friend is very kind-hearted but unfortunately is a bit of a push-over. Her children know this and use it to pretty much manipulate her to have whatever they want. They bark commands at her, scream and cry (they are both pre-teens so too old for that) and call her names. We met up recently and during the few hours we were together I heard her children call her a liar, say they hated her, call her stupid and on and on. They have the worst table manners I have ever seen (ripping at their chicken with their hands and stuffing their mouths. The older one burps at the table and tells the mother to go get her more food. My children are no angels, but they were even shocked! (My youngest took me aside and even said "x sure makes a lot of commands!" I've seen how my friend reacts to her children - she yells, begs, pleads - but her husband is never there (travels a lot for work) and she has no power in her house.
I have had a hard time making friends, and rarely meet someone that I get on with so well. I can't really bear seeing her treated like this. I have said a very few times how long are you going to take this, or do they always talk to you like this, but she is the care-giver/nurturer and I guess will continue to take it. Our kids do not click at all - we have had the family over for dinner a few times, and afterwards my children tell me how the other ones swear a LOT, get mad when they don't get their way, and are just not very nice. I don't think she knows that the kids don't get along. She's often suggesting that they do things together, but I know my children really don't want to. I would rather just stay "adult friends"- which I have done with other friends. But the problem I have is how she is treated by her kids. I'd like some advice as to whether I should talk to her about how her children treat her or not. I don't know of any advice that won't make me seem condescending (like my kids are "better" than hers). Does anyone have any advice to what SHE can do? It really does bother her- she seems so sad when she talks about how they are to her. She seems completely lost. But I also don't want to risk our friendship. Thank you for your advice.