How should I tell my child I don't like her friends? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 09-04-2014, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How should I tell my child I don't like her friends?

My 14 year old girl often invites her friends at home and I don't like some of them. I just don't feel like their good influence of her and don't know how to tell my daughter about it. How should I approach my child about this thing? Any advice would be a great help. Thanks

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#2 of 13 Old 09-04-2014, 08:21 PM
 
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I probably wouldn't. I would ask her in a low key, non accusatory way what qualities she values in her friends. I would comment positively on the friends you do like... especially if she seems happier or more open when she's with them. I would encourage her to get involved in some other activities that would widen her social pool. At 14 though, you risk starting a power struggle over who her friends are and that's not a good move.

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#3 of 13 Old 09-04-2014, 09:08 PM
 
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Totally agree with whatsnextmom. I wouldn't say anything. There's almost zero chance that she'll say "Oh, wow, I hadn't noticed that they weren't nice girls. Thanks for filling me in. I guess I'd better stop hanging out with them." Instead you'll make her angry, and she'll stick by them all the more.

If you've done a good job instilling values, you can bet she's more than aware of her friends' shortcomings and is simply choosing to look past them for the time being, for reasons that are meaningful to her. If she gets hurt in these friendships, or makes some mistakes as a result of them, you'll be in a good position to offer her whatever support or sounding board she needs. She would hardly come to you for support if she risks an "I told you so" sort of response.

Oh, and given that she's probably going to hang out with these kids no matter what, and that you fear they may be bad influences, it is far better that they all feel comfortable coming to your house to hang out, where you can keep more awareness of what their up to. If you make it clear you don't like her friends, they'll just find other places to be together, places where you have no idea what they're up to.

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#4 of 13 Old 09-06-2014, 02:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah that's what I thought too. Glad I didn't make a move yet. Consulted some of my fellow moms too and they have the same opinions as yours too. Thanks again!

My love for children has seen me featured in many education and children websites, whether talking about healthy snacks, motivating students or children's fashion at Bonza Brats. I love reading books, and shopping is my way of spending time with my young family. If you would like to catch me, you can via Google+ or Twitter: @HollyEasterby
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#5 of 13 Old 09-23-2014, 08:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by hollyeasterbybb View Post
My 14 year old girl often invites her friends at home and I don't like some of them. I just don't feel like their good influence of her and don't know how to tell my daughter about it. How should I approach my child about this thing? Any advice would be a great help. Thanks
Start by remembering your own childhood and why you picked the friends you did. Remember how your parents reacted to you choice of friends and why. Remember what you liked or didn't like about your own childhood friends and also how you FELT about your parents reactions to your friends back then. Once you recall all of this, you will have a better idea how to deal with your own child now.

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At 14 though, you risk starting a power struggle over who her friends are and that's not a good move.
IMO, the only way a power struggle can occur is if there is some kind of unhappy rift between the teen and her mom in the first place which is affecting the "friends" thing. By the time she is 14, you have already UNWITTINGLY conditioned and trained her to be attracted to "friends" that you don't like but the damage is already done. Now you are faced with retracing your steps to see where and how you influenced your child to make these choices and somehow REVERSE the way you have trained her.

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Totally agree with whatsnextmom. I wouldn't say anything. There's almost zero chance that she'll say "Oh, wow, I hadn't noticed that they weren't nice girls. Thanks for filling me in. I guess I'd better stop hanging out with them." Instead you'll make her angry, and she'll stick by them all the more.
LOL, my parents did NOT like most of my friends which was cool since there was so much animosity and contempt between my parents and me and so I liked anything that they did not like.

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If you've done a good job instilling values, you can bet she's more than aware of her friends' shortcomings and is simply choosing to look past them for the time being, for reasons that are meaningful to her.
Your kid's choice of friends will indicate exactly what those "values" are. If your kid is selecting "seedy" friends, you've instilled seedy values in your kid and if you have instilled GOOD values in your kid, she will select GOOD friends who you will approve of. It's mostly about the quality of your parenting. You reap what you sow.

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Oh, and given that she's probably going to hang out with these kids no matter what, and that you fear they may be bad influences, it is far better that they all feel comfortable coming to your house to hang out, where you can keep more awareness of what their up to. If you make it clear you don't like her friends, they'll just find other places to be together, places where you have no idea what they're up to. Miranda
The parent is always going to be the most powerful influence on their own child - up to a certain age and, if the kid is attracted to the "wrong" kind of friends, it is a sorry result of "wrong" parenting which has set the kid up to go for those "wrong" influences in the first place so, it will make more sense to undo the bad influences you have given your kid BEFORE the kid is tempted to take off with her seedy friends to have their fun behind your back. In other words, correct your own parenting mistakes before you damage you own child further!
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#6 of 13 Old 09-23-2014, 08:56 PM
 
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Your kid's choice of friends will indicate exactly what those "values" are. If your kid is selecting "seedy" friends, you've instilled seedy values in your kid and if you have instilled GOOD values in your kid, she will select GOOD friends who you will approve of. It's mostly about the quality of your parenting. You reap what you sow.

Although I think that as parents, we have tremendous influence over our children, I believe that all human beings have freewill. We've known families where different kids in the family made different choices. I've also seen kids go through stages where they try out different styles of people, like trying out a different hair cut. Sometimes, they come away from what looks like "selecting seedy friends" wiser and more clear in their own values.

I think it is very disrespectful to teens to view all of their choices as solely as reflection of ourselves. That requires a level of narcissism that just isn't healthy.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#7 of 13 Old 09-23-2014, 10:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jr37 View Post
By the time she is 14, you have already UNWITTINGLY conditioned and trained her to be attracted to "friends" that you don't like but the damage is already done. Now you are faced with retracing your steps to see where and how you influenced your child to make these choices and somehow REVERSE the way you have trained her.
Jim, I understand that your childhood and teen years were highly dysfunctional, but I can't help but feel like you're projecting a black-and-white mentality upon other people's relationships with their children. I would be surprised if most of the relationships represented amongst caring, attachment-oriented parents frequenting this message board are as dysfunctional as what you grew up with. Are you even a parent?

I'm someone who chose some friends in my early to mid teens whom my parents didn't think were good choices. In some respects they were bad influences, and I did engage in a some risky behaviour as a result of hanging out with them, but at the same time I was learning to dig past superficial affect and behaviour to see the person behind the façade. My parents were good, caring parents. I don't think they were wrong to express disapproval of my choices of friends, nor do I think I was necessarily wrong to care about the people I did during those years. I eventually moved on to friendships with teens who were less 'troubled' and more mainstream, but I believe I was shaped in a positive way by those earlier friendships.

When a teen chooses friends her parents disapprove of, sometimes that's the result of bad or misguided parenting and damaged parent-child relationships. In those cases a complete reversal of parenting strategies might be advisable. But I think that most of the time, with typical teen-parent relationships, there's not much to it: it's an experiment with a new social identity, a trial balloon in the process of differentiating from family, an assertion of independence, simply a step along the way to more mature relationships.

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#8 of 13 Old 09-24-2014, 12:15 AM
 
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I addressed this post before and have apparently bothered some people so here's my next best piece of advice.

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Originally Posted by hollyeasterbybb View Post
My 14 year old girl often invites her friends at home and I don't like some of them. I just don't feel like their good influence of her and don't know how to tell my daughter about it. How should I approach my child about this thing? Any advice would be a great help. Thanks
Just bluntly and honestly tell her that you don't like so and so and tell her why. Then tell her what you expect or want and either wait for her to do what you want or MAKE her do it.
good luck
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#9 of 13 Old 09-24-2014, 02:19 AM
 
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Just bluntly and honestly tell her that you don't like so and so and tell her why. Then tell her what you expect or want and either wait for her to do what you want or MAKE her do it.
good luck
I have 2 DDs. One is 16 and one turns 18 in a few weeks. I have wonderful, open relationships with both of them.

How old are your DDs and what sort of relationships do you have? I'm curious, because I can't see your advice leading to a positive, open relationship with a teen age girl. Has this approach worked for you?

Raising a teen a more complicated than training a dog.
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but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#10 of 13 Old 09-24-2014, 09:23 AM
 
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When a teen chooses friends her parents disapprove of, sometimes that's the result of bad or misguided parenting and damaged parent-child relationships. In those cases a complete reversal of parenting strategies might be advisable. But I think that most of the time, with typical teen-parent relationships, there's not much to it: it's an experiment with a new social identity, a trial balloon in the process of differentiating from family, an assertion of independence, simply a step along the way to more mature relationships.
Yes, and also sometimes parents are wrong. I'm quite sure that I am unable to fully evaluate my DC's friends because I don't spend all that much time with them. My DC sees her friends in all sorts of situations and may well see something beautiful in someone who rubs me the wrong way.

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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#11 of 13 Old 09-25-2014, 09:45 AM
 
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One low key idea--if there is a friend you DO like a lot, set up a fun day for just she and that one friend...
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#12 of 13 Old 10-05-2014, 07:23 AM
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I remember the friends my mother did not like. One in particular stands out. I felt her reasons were pretty superficial. Her family had money, and I felt like that made my mother uncomfortable. Her family was very good to me; I went to my first concert with her and her mother. Not that we couldn't afford concerts, but that wasn't my mom's thing (it IS my thing with my DD, and I have been that mom who has taken her friends along, and we are not rich!). They had a summer house, I went with them for a few days at least once. I recall going shopping with her and her mom, and the mom treated me to a really nice, named brand top- one that was about $40 in 1986 This was right after our 6th grade graduation, and her mom said this is a gift. The mom was "cool" I guess, but not a bad mother at all- had a husband, another child, worked (her family owned a business and yes the mother contributed). Never saw her drink, smoke, didn't party, etc. a family woman who just enjoyed doing things with her kids.

The child was a bit outspoken, but absolutely not rude or disrespectful in any way. She had a fun personality. I can attest that she NEVER did anything questionable when we were friends (she switched schools in 8th grade). She was semi-boy crazy, but was not acting on it in any way. I guess my mom just thought she should be more prim and proper for a girl with means, lol (my mom is very big on appearances, and she did get a wacky haircut in jhs).

Anyway, it bothered me that she didn't "care for" my friend. She didn't stop me from hanging out with her, but I knew it wasn't her first choice of friends.

My dd14 and I have a pretty open relationship so far. She has already told me about people who she doesn't like in her new HS, the "bad girls" as she put it (girls who are trying to attract boys in certain ways she would t consider). When we are at camp (where I am The nurse) I see who she gravitates towards and away from. She tried very hard to be part of the "in crowd" who were just plain mean back in (private, catholic) elementary school. She was burned a few times. I was actually equally duped by one, who I had coined as one of her nicest friends, turned out to be a (insert expletive here). I never forced the friendship though (she lived kind of far, and her mother was always late picking her up). So there, I liked and approved of the kid, and was wrong!

The other thing I am trying to wrap my finger around now, is that I will not know all of her friends now that the social and geographic circle has expanded. She goes to a special HS where kids come from all neighborhoods. But she has been very open about sharing who her new friends are, showing me pics, their Instagram pages (I snoop anyway), and she talks about them a lot. I just keep on listening and gathering data in my head
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#13 of 13 Old 10-11-2014, 06:59 AM
 
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It is hard to say because I don't know your relationship with your daughter. With my daughter I would gently and honestly tell her what I think and ask her opinion on it. I would mention for her to keep her eyes open and explain that I am watching out for her because I love her. But that is my daughter and I. Not sure if all young girls would benefit from a conversation like this.
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