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<p>I don't know why, but I get a funny feeling whenever I am around a particular child. My guard goes up and my hair feels prickly. The child has never done anything terrible around me, and in fact my child gets along great. I don't know exactly what it is, but I get the feeling that I do not want them to be friends when they are older. I feel the need to 'let out my feelings' because recently the child was at our house and destroyed a 1000 piece puzzle that was about 1/3 done. I took the child aside and expressed my disappointment and how it hurt my feelings that this was done, and a total blank stare was all I got. A few minutes later the child attempted to mix up the pieces some more. Grrr. The kids are 4.5 and 5, old enough to know this was a mean thing to do.</p>
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<p>So, what do you do when the parent is a friend of yours? The parent is not all that close to me and the child doesn't have that many playmates, my kids have tons of playmates, most of whom I really like. Do you try to 'pick' your child's friends at this age? What is another child starts to teach or show your child behavior that you don't like?</p>
 

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<p>We have issues with our neighbor's boy.  He is the only kid around here that is close to my oldest son's age.  But I can't stand him, he is whiny, rude, when he doesn't get his way he claims to be going home, which makes my son give in to what the kid wants, watches too much wrestling and acts it out with my kid.  Lots of things I hate about this child, yet I let my son play with him b/c he has picked him as his friend and really likes him and is always sad when he can't play.</p>
 

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<p>Honestly, I never thought of it.  I don't think its about "picking" friends.  At that age it was a matter of convenience and availability. Most play times were initiated by the moms and the moms who hung out together gravitated together. </p>
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<p>You said the mom is friend but that not that close to you or your child.  Which is it? If you are friends keep the play times supervised and trust your gut.  Maybe the friendship isn't worth it. If she isn't a friend than no worries, just say no to play dates.</p>
 

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<p>Yes, I would keep my son away from a child that is a bad influence. I don't think that not liking another kid would be a good enough reason to keep my son away from another child, but I think you have valid reasons for keeping your son away from the kid you have a bad feeling about. He's not a kid I would want in my house, since he purposely destroyed something of yours. We recently went through this, as the kid next door is around my son's age. However, the neighbor kid has many, many problems and I don't allow my son to have anything to do with him anymore. It's a really thorny issue, I know. I'm still new at this, but to be frank, I don't feel a bit bad about booting bratty kids from DS's life. I've only done it once, though. I'm sure that DS will have his share of annoying, but not necessarily "bad" friends in the future that I'll just have to put up with.</p>
 

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<p>I think you ABSOLUTELY have the right to choose your child's friends.  At age 4/5- DEFINITELY!  Later on? DEFINITELY!  You are MOM and the parent.  You are the one who should be placing the right influences in your child's life.  I think you should always be mindful of who he or she is hanging around.  And at that age most definitely decide to say no to playtimes whether planned or impromptu.  Good Luck Mama!</p>
 

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<p>I have weighed in on kids I don't like to DD and do feel that I have final say at this age, especially if it's kids who would be in my home. DD has to ask for a playdate in that case and I have said no and explained why I did not like a particular child (physical aggression toward DD, property or other kids, that's a big one to me) and I encourage DD to think about how kids act and choose her friendships on that, not just convenience, when she's older she'll have to choose among her many peers and I want her to choose carefully. Kids in school I have less control over, but teachers have separated DD from kids who have influenced her negatively and we've talked about why she and these kids are not allowed to play together and emphasize that DD is in control of herself and has to decide whether she wants to spend time with kids that she gets in trouble with, that kind of thing. I guess for me, I'm trying to lay a foundation for the future, I gravitated to "bad kids" as a teenager, got no real guidance about it, and it got me in trouble, I'd love DD to think more about the consequences than I did. Maybe it's early for that, but the kid OP talks about seems like the kind of kid I would not want playing with my kid and I think it would be a good opportunity to open a dialogue abt why, that would give your son a chance to step back and see the child's behaviours through your eyes: "well, I don't like having X here because he doesn't respect our things, remember when he destroyed the puzzle we had worked so hard on? It's important that people respect each other and when they don't, being around them is not much fun." I might even bring it up to the child in question at the beginning of the nrxt playdate, explain my expectations and the consequences for not acting appropriately, that way, he gets a chance to redeem himself and he's responsible for the consequences if he decides not to do what is asked of him. ALL that to say, I don't pick my DD's friends per se, but I have vetoed extra time with some kids, not not very often, most of her little friends are good kids, not perfect, and that's ok.</p>
 

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<p><br>
 </p>
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Qbear'smama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1283560/do-you-pick-your-kids-friends-at-age-4-5#post_16094495"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>I have weighed in on kids I don't like to DD and do feel that I have final say at this age, especially if it's kids who would be in my home. DD has to ask for a playdate in that case and I have said no and explained why I did not like a particular child (physical aggression toward DD, property or other kids, that's a big one to me) and I encourage DD to think about how kids act and choose her friendships on that, not just convenience, when she's older she'll have to choose among her many peers and I want her to choose carefully. Kids in school I have less control over, but teachers have separated DD from kids who have influenced her negatively and we've talked about why she and these kids are not allowed to play together and emphasize that DD is in control of herself and has to decide whether she wants to spend time with kids that she gets in trouble with, that kind of thing. I guess for me, I'm trying to lay a foundation for the future, I gravitated to "bad kids" as a teenager, got no real guidance about it, and it got me in trouble, I'd love DD to think more about the consequences than I did. Maybe it's early for that, but the kid OP talks about seems like the kind of kid I would not want playing with my kid and I think it would be a good opportunity to open a dialogue abt why, that would give your son a chance to step back and see the child's behaviours through your eyes: "well, I don't like having X here because he doesn't respect our things, remember when he destroyed the puzzle we had worked so hard on? It's important that people respect each other and when they don't, being around them is not much fun." I might even bring it up to the child in question at the beginning of the nrxt playdate, explain my expectations and the consequences for not acting appropriately, that way, he gets a chance to redeem himself and he's responsible for the consequences if he decides not to do what is asked of him. ALL that to say, I don't pick my DD's friends per se, but I have vetoed extra time with some kids, not not very often, most of her little friends are good kids, not perfect, and that's ok.</p>
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ITA. I will absolutely not allow DS to be around kids who don't treat him well or who exhibit other deviant behaviors. I'm not talking about typical kid squabbles or other age-related incidents. Parental instinct is invaluable here. I also really wish that my parents had stepped in and monitored my friendships. I hung out with kids who treated me like crap when I was young, and then went on to befriend really awful juvenile delinquents as a teenager. This really, REALLY screwed me up. I think it's profoundly important to guide your children when it comes to friend selection. Then, when they get older they will be well equipped to choose their friends wisely.</p>
 

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<p>I usually try not to lord over them too much when it comes to picking their friends, but my 6yo's best friend's family creeps me out majorly. I don't mind if they play at school, but we try to keep play dates limited to...never!</p>
 

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<p>I don't pick my kids friends at any age.  I do talk to them about the behavior of their friends though.  We do have a neighbor kid who is just awful.  He is no longer allowed in my house and my kids can't go to his house (because of lack of supervision) but I don't forbid them from playing together.  At this point, I don't need to though because my son has realized that this kid is not a nice person and doesn't want anything to do with him.</p>
 

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<p>Last year there was a girl at dd's preschool that she adored, even though she was controlling and sometimes mean. She also brought cultural influences into dd's world that we were hoping to avoid by sending her to a Waldorf-inspired preschool. They never played outside of school, despite dd's requests to play with her. The girl invited dd' to her birthday party, and we didn't go. I was wondering how we would handle this is they ended up in K/1 together (most schools around here are multi-age). It was easy at this point to just forget to mention there was a birthday party or to be noncommittal enough about playdates to just not schedule anything, but I didn't think it would stay that easy. I was SO relieved when they moved 40 minutes away! Now they aren't in preschool together anymore and there's no way they'll be together next year when dd's in K. Yay!</p>
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<p>Young kids can't always weigh the pros and cons of a relationship and make wise choices. That's our job. Even though that girl was sometimes nasty to dd, she talks about her often (still! after six months of not seeing her) and seems to really miss playing with her. But we are making very clear, conscious choices about protecting the innocence of childhood, and that girl was not conducive to that!</p>
 
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