I Can’t Stand My Son’s Friend—All The Types Of Annoying Kids And How To Handle Them

You can't be expected to like all of your kid's playmates, but what do you do when they drive you C-R-A-Z-Y? Alexandria Durrell has some tips

My son has this friend, let’s call him Henry*, and I’ve never felt so much disdain for a kid as I do for that one. I can’t stand anything about him—just hearing his voice sets my nerves on edge. And you better believe I feel guilty for the feelings I have. I’m an adult! The kid isn’t even eight-years-old, and I’m already thinking of ways to take him down a peg... What kind of person am I?

Turns out, a totally normal one. It’s ok to not like your kids’ friends, it’s how you handle it that matters.

First, figure out the type of kid you’re dealing with (nb: some kids are sneaky and cross categories, be warned!)

The Tornado Kid
Every time Austin comes to our house, I brace myself for the repairs I’ll be doing later. From the moment he runs through the front door, muddy shoes on, and pounces onto my cream-coloured couch, I start to fill with dread.

The Annoying Kid
Henry. The one whose hobbies are always the best, whose life is always the best, whose opinions are facts...there’s nothing terrible about the little dude, but man, is he annoying? Spoiled and egotistical, bossy and whiny, this one makes you wish you had more eyes just so you could roll them.

The Bully
Inexplicably, kids are sometimes drawn to other kids who push them around more than normal. They keep heading back to the one who insults them, puts them down, pushes them around. This is the one kind of “friendship” I’ll happily end instead of manage.

The Way-Too-Mature Kid
Greg’s parents let him play Grand Theft Auto in grade two. He loves The Walking Dead, and he’s taught me some swear words I didn’t even know existed. He’s way more “mature” than my seven-year-old, and I’m not comfortable with the lessons he’s teaching. And what about Beth, the ten-year-old who’s super into boys, stuffs her sports bra, and loves making her cheekbones “really pop”? I’m not cool with my daughter getting into that stuff so early.

The Bad Influence
Sarah is always whispering ideas into my daughter’s ear, and usually, they end up being bad ones. Her parents are way more chill than I’ll ever be, and she takes every opportunity to push the boundaries. She’ll be the one convincing my daughter to sneak out after curfew, I just know it.

The Disrespectful Kid
Respect matters in our home. I’m forever telling the kids to watch their tone, use their manners, be polite, and clean up after themselves. When a friend comes to visit and doesn’t display these characteristics, it’s really difficult to enforce them in my own kids. And it’s just plain annoying to have to let a kid disrespect me in my own home.

HERE’S HOW TO HANDLE THEM ALL

Model for them what good friendships look like and be clear about your expectations of their behaviour. Talk to your kids before and after friends are over to discuss what went well and how to improve next time. When my kids were younger, we talked a lot about sharing, but now it’s more about attitudes and appropriate activities.

Never blame your child’s friends, or actively try to separate them (with your kid’s knowledge). That’ll make the friend even more attractive to your child. It’s fine to point out what their friend does that’s unacceptable, but it’s also ok to be tolerant of people who aren’t “perfect”. There are a number of friends we’re always too busy to make time for, and thankfully, those friendships slowly fizzled. But as kids get older and more independent, we have less control over who they hang with, which is why these next points are so important...

Host the playdates, even if the kid drives you bonkers. This gives you the opportunity to guide the behaviours from the sidelines, which is especially important if you see your child’s behaviour changing when they’re with a particular friend.

Set boundaries with the visiting kids. It’s ok to set out your home rules. We’re really clear when kids come over that whatever mess they make is theirs to clean up. I probably sound like the neighbourhood nag, but that’s ok—I’m not down with Nerf guns being shot at my TV, basketballs being bounced in the living room, and kids jumping from the top bunks. I set the rules, they’re expected to follow ‘em.

Reinforce your kids’ confidence in their own personalities so they don’t “change” in the presence of others. Self-esteem is a huge part of kids’ friendships through all ages, and if they’re confident in themselves, they’re more likely to choose friends who are positive additions to their lives.

I’m really thankful that, for the most part, my kids’ friends are absolutely wonderful kids who are welcome here anytime. And, even better, most feel like family now.

But ohhh, that Henry. I really can’t stand that guy.

* Names have been changed to protect the annoying little sh*ts my kids calls friends.

 

New On the Baby Post

 

You May Also Like...

 
 
Register For Our Newsletter Contests Video

Latest Comments

Start Here: Introductions

Hello there, There's no doubt that your web site may be having web browser compatibility problems. Whenever I look at your blog in Safar

gladysdabn 14 min 17 sec ago.

Start Here: Introductions

Hello there, There's no doubt that your web site may be having web browser compatibility problems. Whenever I look at your blog in Safari,

gladysdabn 14 min 20 sec ago.

Start Here: Introductions

My brother suggested I might like this website. He was totally right. This post truly made my day. You can not imagine simply how much ti

dianneadco 9 hours 10 min ago.

Product Recalls Attention

HarperCollins Publishers recalls Two "That’s Not My…" Children’s Books

HarperCollins has recalled That’s Not My Reindeer and That’s Not My Santa kids’ books due to possible mould contamination

Joe Fresh Recalls Striped Quilted Baby Jackets

Due to a choking hazard, Loblaw Companies has recalled Joe Fresh Baby Jackets

Costco Recalls Kirkland Signature Brand Quinoa Salad

Costco Wholesale Canada has issued a recall of the Kirkland Signature brand Quinoa Salad because of reported illnesses.