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How do I deal with my friend?

(5 Posts)
taxiforme Sat 22-Sep-12 08:26:12

I have a really good friend who is a great person, coping in adversity, single mum, alcoholic Ex, difficult relationship with her parents. I moved away from our home town as I got married but our friendship has weathered this.

She has kids who are.. shall we say.. "lively".

The have been to stay a couple of times. Particularly on their way to and from the coast. The difficulty I have is that my normally serene and child focussed (disney dad) DH has put his foot down about having them again and it is causing me some conflict.

Back story - Friend's DD slept in my DSD's room (DSD was at her mum's) last time they stayed. My DSD had saved some easter eggs which were on the top of her wardrobe. The easter eggs went missing (though the boxes were left). The only other people who could have eaten them were myself and my DH, we have worked out it could NOT have been my DSCs who ate them. I cleaned the room just before they arrived and it was ME who hid the eggs on top of the wardrobe and I noticed they had been eaten before my DSC came back.

DSD was bereft at the loss of her carefully saved eggs (also a story there but for another post). DH was furious. I was defensive about my friend but there was no other explanation to the loss. I didnt tell my friend as she was on holiday by then and I didnt want to ruin it or our friendship over some f88ing easter eggs. She can be very defensive about her kids (i know this from a similar situation which developed with another friend).

This was some time ago. Friend wants to come and stay with her kids again. DH is very anti and won't consider it. I have had to ask my DSD if she is ok if her bedroom is used (she says no, understandably). I am stuck in the middle. Friend has told me, since then, that her DD has been stealing from her (money) and taking food.

Its a silly condundrum, given how terrible some of the problems that are posted here but I have to say something to her, and soon!

nilbyname Sat 22-Sep-12 08:31:13

Just say you are very sorry but it is not a good time. No other explanation is needed really at this time.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 22-Sep-12 08:33:27

I think you need to be honest with the friend rather than trying to protect her feelings again. If the DD has form stealing money and food, then the disappearance of chocolate is not going to come as a surprise. If she's 'defensive'... ie. takes offence, she may decide not to visit after all and this saves you the trouble.

At the same time, maybe you could ask DH & DSD if a future visit would be OK if you promise to clear everything of any value out of her room first.

Proudnscary Sat 22-Sep-12 08:37:33

I thought you were going to give a string of examples of their dreadful behaviour - not just some eaten some Easter Eggs.

I know several children who would do this too. Mine wouldn't but plenty of their friends would!

All that said, I can understand your dd's upset.

AND I understand if you or your h don't want a particular family to stay.

You don't have to let them come to stay if it's stressful and causes tension between you.

I would make a very simple excuse - you don't even have to make up a specific white lie. Just 'Oh so sorry we can't do that weekend' or 'We're busy every weekend this month'. I do that all the time with people I don't want to see.

Dahlen Sat 22-Sep-12 09:47:51

If she's a really good friend and you're tactful, you should be able to discuss this rather than shy away from it. Your friend has already given you the opening by talking about her DD stealing from her. Stealing is often a sign of a deeper psychological problem rather than 'naughtiness' (although it's also a phase that many children go through and grow out of with no long-term effects). I'd bring it back up on that basis, ask if there's anything you can do to help, and go from there. If your DH and DD feel the issue is out in the open and being dealt with by your friend, you may find they are a lot more amenable to having your friend and her DC over. In that situation I would be very unwilling if I felt it was being swept under the carpet, but quite happy if I felt it had been acknolewdged and something similar was unlikely to happen.

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