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To be concerned that my 3 year old DD doesn’t have a “best friend”??

(51 Posts)
GinnyLovesGin Thu 08-Feb-18 00:03:17

I’d have said this was normal, but I was out with some of the nursery mums over the weekend and they all talked about their kids being “best friends” with certain other kids in the room at nursery. Every single one.

DD has no such best friend. She is happy at nursery and seems to get on with most of the kids. She had a birthday party recently and it was well-attended, kids all happy to see her when she goes in in the mornings etc.

But why does she have no best friend?! She is the youngest in the room and in many ways is a “young” three (socially she seems very young and timid compared to some of the others, still in nappies etc), but she is ahead in terms of some abilities eg she can write her name and stuff.

I’m not sure I want to encourage best friends anyway but it just made me worry that she’s an outsider blush

GinnyLovesGin Thu 08-Feb-18 00:04:25

Also the nursery has said before that while she will happily play with other kids, she is happiest when playing alone. That makes me feel a bit sad to be honest.

Redglitter Thu 08-Feb-18 00:05:29

She's 3!!! She doesn't need a best friend at that age. She's mixing well and playing with lots of kids. That sounds far healthier at that age

Besides the other children with a best friend is this their choice or their parents

I really think you're worrying over absolutely nothing

Onlyoldontheoutside Thu 08-Feb-18 00:12:06

Totally normal,I can't remember my DD having a best friend until she was 4-5 and started school.There's little point comparing at this age as they are all so different.I think that early on best friends are those that mums decide on and want them to play with.

Weezol Thu 08-Feb-18 00:13:22

The other 3 year olds do not have 'best friends' - they have mothers who like to think that they have.

Relax. It sounds like your daughter mixes well and is also quite capable of entertaining herself. That's pretty good for a young three!

Cupofcake Thu 08-Feb-18 00:13:57

They don't really do best friends at that age. Sometimes adults define their friendships for them.

Don't worry, she's so young!!!! but do encourage friendships. Could she have a friend and mum over to tea?

Enidblyton1 Thu 08-Feb-18 00:14:52

I would be more worried if she had a 'best friend' at the age of 3.

GinnyLovesGin Thu 08-Feb-18 00:18:46

Oh we do a lot of play dates with various kids. She goes to loads of birthday parties and we go to soft play etc with kids from nursery. But she doesn’t seem remotely interested in “best friends” she changes who she talks about every day.

This is reassuring 🙂

NotAnotherEmma Thu 08-Feb-18 00:21:20

I'm guessing by best-friend they just are putting that title on the child theirs plays with the most, maybe due to shyness, introversion, or the child being difficult for most to get along with.

The fact that your child is able to play well with most other kids imo means she's less shy, she's well adjusted socially, and easy to get along with. 😊

Cupofcake Thu 08-Feb-18 00:21:25

That sounds so healthy and lovely. Nothing to worry about. Have a G&T and relax!

NoqontroI Thu 08-Feb-18 00:23:58

Sounds normal to me. The mum's are projecting the best friend stuff.

Lalliella Thu 08-Feb-18 00:24:49

Best friends aren’t necessarily a good idea. If they fall out, what then? If another child muscles in, what then? Better that she’s happy socialising, gets lots of invitations, has plenty of play dates etc. Also going to nursery is good for socialising anyway. She’s a bit young for a best friend, it wouldn’t last anyway!

Just wondering though - you might like to think about doing something about her still being in nappies... 3 is verging on a little old. Hope you don’t mind me saying!

GinnyLovesGin Thu 08-Feb-18 00:26:32

No the potty training thing is a huge source of worry for me if im honest. She could do it if she wanted to. She doesn’t want to. If I take off her nappy she will hold it in for hours at a time. She simply will not use the toilet or the potty. I dont know what to do next but I’m going to contact the health visitor.

Believe me, it’s not that we haven’t tried.

IssyGH Thu 08-Feb-18 00:27:41

My dd had a best friend from reception until year 3, who then moved to Australia, leaving her with no close friends for quite a while.

It's far better to have lots of friends than to put all your eggs in one basket.

KeepServingTheDrinks Thu 08-Feb-18 00:30:20

I'm going to go against the grain here, because I DO think that lots of kids have a bestie, even that young.

However, I'm going to agree that (a) LOADS don't (b) it's normal and (c) not a problem.

My DD never really had a best friend, she was part of a group of 6 and that was the case all the way through primary. She has NO PROBLEMS getting or maintaining friends (touch wood!) and she's 16 now.

However, my DNeice had a BFF from very early on - they were friends before this, but it was cemented in pre-school. When they fell out (in Yr 5), it was rubbish, as they had no one else to fall back on.

Encourage a wide circle of friends. A 'best friend' isn't necessary.

Lalliella Thu 08-Feb-18 00:35:30

Sorry Ginny I didn’t want to add to your stress. DS was a nightmare to potty train, he was 3 and I was 6 months pregnant with DD and very hormonal, it was horrendous! Although I wouldn’t normally recommend her, we followed the Gina Ford book and it worked really well, sorted in a week.

Terftastic Thu 08-Feb-18 00:36:25

I think at 3 children play together very easily, and yes, of course they have friends, some have best friends, some just gravitate towards each other.

But I don't think DD had a proper best friend till about year 1. I think a lot of the time it's sort of decided by the mums - ie. the mums are friends, so the kids play together a lot, and the mums call them best friends.

My DD has had what I call a proper best friend for years now - since yr 2. Her mum and I chat together, get on, but because our DDs are friends - not the other way round iyswim.

Terftastic Thu 08-Feb-18 00:39:37

Oh, and not potty trained at 3 is on the late side - but don't worry about it yet.

Don't stress, give rewards (we found one choc button for something in the potty very effective) and leave it a while. It's not unusual these days - with disposable nappies, they're not always as aware.

nitroxTrained Thu 08-Feb-18 04:20:59

"I was out with some of the nursery mums over the weekend and they all talked about their kids being “best friends” with certain other kids in the room at nursery. Every single one. "

I bet they did. They'll also be the ones declaring their sons and daughter 'boyfriend and girlfriend' when they're 5.

It's perfectly normal. Most 3 year old's relationships change. Friendships strengthen or weaken over time.

As long as she's happy that's the main thing. You've said she does play andinteract and that other children are pleased to see her. Relax.

Aeroflotgirl Thu 08-Feb-18 07:24:16

Bloody hell she's only 3! A best friend, my goodness. Its good that she plays with all the others at nursery, that is what its about. As long as your dd is happy and plays with others nicely than that's all that matters. Some people really want their children to grow up fast and reach milestones before they are ready.

happystory Thu 08-Feb-18 07:34:43

I ran a preschool for many years and did see a FEW examples of children (usually girls) seeming to be 'best friends.' IMO it wasn't a good thing. They would play with each other exclusively and then be rather lost if the other was absent. Your daughter sounds just right socially for 3.

BrightBurn Thu 08-Feb-18 07:43:24

I don't believe that at the age of three children have 'best friends'. Your DD is perfectly fine and probably just in the onlooker and parallel stages of play which is common at three. Children don't play 'properly' with each other (co-operative play) until their a bit older as their a bit older as they lack the social skills to do so. The other children are probably just in a different stage of play known as associative play where they are beginning to interact with each other during play. Your DD will get their once she's ready!

ncsmummy Thu 08-Feb-18 07:44:06

My DS did have a best friend at that age but it was someone he saw all the time outside of preschool. My DD on the other hand didn't really have a best friend until she was about 7!! I did start to worry toward the end of infant school about it but I needn't have. Now at almost 14 she has 2 best friends and they are a very close, supportive little group. Your DD is just fine.

BrightBurn Thu 08-Feb-18 07:44:34

Jesus! Please ignore my typos and grammatical errors blush

neverhadanymarblestolose Thu 08-Feb-18 07:50:10

To those saying 3 year olds don't have best friends, it might not be the norm, but some do. My daughter and her friend were inseparable at nursery. They did everything together. The nursery actively tried to separate them for their own benefit.

OP - there are plenty of children that don't have best friends at nursery. My son doesn't and he's a happy sociable child. He just doesn't crave the intense close friendships that his sister prefers.
Regarding the potty training, in a way, it's probably a good thing that she's holding it in, as at least she's learning to control her bladder. My daughter did this when we first attempted potty training. I gave up and tried again a few months later and she mastered it in a couple of days. I was convinced it was because she'd learnt bladder control when she first refused to use the potty!

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