"A friend is one who walks in when others walk out"
Friends play an important part in our life. They can lead us down the right path, inspire us, support us in time of need, celebrate with us or they may simply lead us astray.
So as a mum, one of my greatest worry is whether my children will choose the correct friends.
My eldest is a fairly reserved kid and doesnt make friends easily. When she started school some 9 years ago, we were worried that she wouldnt have any friends. She is the sort that is very selective of her friends. Even if someone wanted to befriend her, she had to want the girl to be her friend first. She doesnt loud, extroverted and "havoc" girls. They may be friends, but not a REAL friend, not someone she would hang out with, just a "hi!" "Bye" relationship. So when she first started school we were pleased that she managed to make a couple of new friends within a few days, and to help her nurture that friendship, we arranged playdates for her. At P4 when she had to change schools, due to a different school programme that she was taking, we were again concerned for her. At the end of P6, we were really glad she had a couple of really good friends, and we were very pleased with her choice of friends - girls who were polite, humble, hard-working, and generally good girls from humble backgrounds. These same girls continue to be her best friends though they are no longer in the same school.
My son, on the other hand, is Mr Sociable. He has no trouble at all making friends. From young, he was very friendly with everyone. He has friends in school that are not even from his class nor his level. We found out about how "popular" he was when he was in P2 when he played in his school chess tournament. When he went up to collect his prize, the boys, and even some girls, from the upper primary levels were all chanting his name!! (usually you wouldnt expect older kids to bother with a small fry like him!!) And this boy also has lots of friends from other schools!!
This boy would even make friends with the trash collector, and the construction workers in the truck next to us when we stopped at traffic junctions, and we would have truck loads of people waving to us when the light turned green! EVERYONE is his friend, and he can almost convince anyone to do anything, and vice versa.
As such, we are a little concerned about him and the friends he makes, coz he is one that can be easily led astray.
As for the youngest, she is pretty much like her sister, so I think, we should be fairly safe with her choice of friends.
But how do you help your children find friends that are of the right mix?
Of course, we always talk to them about choosing friends carefully. We emphasize to them the good qualities that we they should look for in friends as well as what they should do as friends, how they should behave towards their pals, and acceptable/unacceptable traits and behavior.
By sending our children to "good" schools, we thought should eliminate some of the problems. But people come is all shapes, sizes, and character, so that is no guarantee. As such, we encourage our children to bring their friends home on a regular basis, and then we engage their friends, and we also make it a point to meet their pals parents.
We also expose them to the children of our friends, and hope they nurture strong friendship with their children, and hope that the children will look out for each other.
So what do you to help your children to make the right friends?
"Friends are the roses of life: pick them carefully and avoid the thorns."
And I am glad for the good friends that I have made here. Ladies, I think you know who you are!! *HUGS* This is for you!