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Imaginary friends - what should I do?????

(29 Posts)
charlie72 Fri 27-May-05 22:37:46

My youngest is 3.4 and for the past couple of months has had an imaginary friend called Peter.

When Peter was first mentioned, I thought he was from playschool but realised he wasn't when ds said they climb trees together with Peter's ladder!!!

He doesn't mention him at playschool or at the childminders (I work full time) but as soon as we get home, Peter comes out!!

What do I do?? I've talked to Peter (till HV said I shouldn't talk directly to him), I've ignored it, I've even started saying that Peter must be ds special friend because I can't see him.

Other mums I know find it funny but I don't know whether I should be worried or not????

Any ideas???

misdee Fri 27-May-05 22:38:20

all i can say is, he choose a good name.

sansouci Fri 27-May-05 22:40:50

I used to have 3 imaginary friends. Izan, Tutu & Trolley. This was when i was about 4 or 5. I worry because my dd doesn't seem to like using her imagination much. for example, her beloved baby born is "just plastic, Mummy".

roisin Fri 27-May-05 22:41:47

No, don't worry, it's perfectly normal. Ds1 had an imaginary friend called Sophie for about a year when he was 3-4.
But she just disappeared one day and never came back.

tiffini Fri 27-May-05 22:43:07

I would advise not to discourage it, but also not to get to drawn in by conversations about Peter, he will grow out of it eventually.

Sorry that is probably not much help.

Miaou Fri 27-May-05 22:45:50

dd2 has an imaginary friend, called by the same name as her but pronounced differently!! She appeared when dd was about 2.5 IIRC. I read up about it at the time - it is apparently a sign of intelligence and a good imagination!

The advice I had was not to pooh-pooh it, but not to pander to it (ie no setting extra places at the table etc), just to accept it. dd is now 6.5 and Aylish occasionally makes an appearance now and again but not often.

starshaker Fri 27-May-05 22:46:00

i used to have 1 called henry when i was abou 5 i think my mum just kinda played along but said she couldnt speak to him cos i was special and he was only seen by me.

Aero Fri 27-May-05 22:48:09

Dd also had one called 'Ansa' for ages! She's rising five now and he seems to have been forgotten about/grown out of, so I wouldn't worry. My mum tells me I had one too around the same age.

Miaou Fri 27-May-05 22:49:13

Here's a thread about imaginary friends from the archives

tiffini Fri 27-May-05 22:49:49

My mum told me, when i was little i never had an imaginary friend as such, but i would often become someone called Mary. Mary apparently had a totally different personality to me, she was horrid and very naughty, where as I was quiet and good. Scary eh?

jodee Fri 27-May-05 22:50:15

Dash and Violet (from The Incredibles) often come to our house to visit, usually at breakfast time - ds (5y2m) will often announce their arrival, I have to say 'hello', but he doesn't actually 'play' with them and they aren't mentioned again once they are 'here', if that makes sense.

charlie72 Fri 27-May-05 22:51:30

Thanks so much everyone - I didn't think I should be worried but have never known anyone who had had a similar experience.

I AM NOT ALONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

lucy5 Fri 27-May-05 22:52:18

My dd is 4 and has an imaginary, well not really friend, visitor might be a better description. I was quite spooked at first. His name is Grandpa Bowl and he comes down the chimney when we are not in the room and spins round the ceiling. He also tells dd naughty things and is used as an alternative to dh or I when we both say no. He has been around for a few months and has been on holiday to Africa and Japan, the lucky thing and we also get visits from various members of his family. God it sounds weird when I type it but largely we acknowledge it but don't get pulled in to the exciting life of Grandpa Bowl.

charlie72 Fri 27-May-05 22:59:54


Thanks for the thread - some of them are hilarious.

ds definately has a good imagination - should stand him in good stead for school!!!

Thanks again everyone

LGJ Fri 27-May-05 23:00:08


Dash is just one of many who frequently inhabit our household, at one stage I was thinking of applying to Social Services, for some sort of grant to help feed them all.

onlyjoking9329 Fri 27-May-05 23:10:26

one of my girls had a family of imaginary friend matthew douglas and rebecca, i was pleased as imagination and autism dont often mix, trouble started when she would announce to her twin sister that she was going to a party at there house and her sister couldn't go oh we had tears and the full on autie meltdown of course trying to explain to un invited sister didn't work, then we would be told matthew is coming for tes and she sat by the window waiting for him, even roped her sister in as a look out, it was a nightmare getting them to bed cos they were both adamant that he was coming, but they all disappeared thou they did get a few mentions when a new boy was in there class called matthew.

jodee Fri 27-May-05 23:11:20

LGJ! Bet you feel like the old woman who lived in a shoe!

kama Fri 27-May-05 23:11:35

Message withdrawn

trinityrocks Sat 28-May-05 07:48:36

Apparently it's a sign of intelligence and will pass. You shouldn't discourage it but don't talk directly to him.
My DD1 5 has had a pink and purple mouse called "noone" for the past 8 months or so.
It sits on her shoulder all the time except when we go swimming and then it stays in the locker apparently so he won't get lost

Pinotmum Sat 28-May-05 09:35:15

My dd spent all day on her imaginary mobile to her imaginary friend yesterday. Quite embarrassing when you're walking round the shops and your 4.6 yo is talking to herself non-stop.

Hulababy Sat 28-May-05 10:10:19

DD (3y 1m) has a friend called Cotcha. Been aeound for about 2-3 months now. Think it is female, but DD still gets his/her mixed up at times. Not here all the time and never at nursery.

I figure it is harmless and just part of DD's imaginary play.

I am certainly not concerned about it, as she plays with real friends lots and prefers their company to the imaginary friend, and she will happily play with all manner of toys/activities also.

Maybe DD is telling me she needs a brother/sister to play with!

hoxtonchick Sat 28-May-05 10:46:51

my ds is 3.4 too, & a couple of weeks ago produced a whole family of imaginary friends, duke, shin & josie. they did everything with him for the weekend (going to work & being his mummy & daddy?????), & have made the odd reappearance over the past few days. i figure he's happy, we're happy.

Hausfrau Sat 28-May-05 12:27:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LGJ Sat 28-May-05 14:15:11

I have it on very good authority that some of these are called Helen

Hausfrau Sat 28-May-05 19:46:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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