I Love Hanging Out With You (It's Your Kid I Can't Stand)

LOL 25

screaming kidFamily friends are awesome. The dads hang out with the dads. Moms chat it up with other moms. And the kids all get along beautifully, laughing and playing until the sun slips low beneath the horizon. It's truly amazing how wonderfully everyone always gets along.

Yeah, believe that and I have a bridge or two to sell ya. Real cheap!

Finding the perfect family to complement your own can be 20 times tougher than potty training ever was. It generally starts with the moms getting along and the family get-together soon follows. Dads are fairly easy going -- as long as sports or beer is involved. But the kids. Oh, the kids.

Think about it. How many really good friends do you love hanging out with, but ... well, your kids just don't get along too well? Have you ever bribed your kid to go on a play date with another kid, just so you could hang out with the other mom?

More from The Stir: If Your Kid Is In My House, I'll Discipline Him My Way

I know it's tough being a mom out there. Finding someone to understand what you're going through and be a solid friend to lean on, get advice, and just all-around chat with is invaluable. But when your kids don't get along with theirs, it can cause a lot of friction. It's even worse when their kid is abusive to or a bad influence on your own, and the other mom is oblivious.

So what do you do when your good friend has a kid that sucks big time? You can avoid play dates and family get-togethers and just keep talking with the friend and hanging out sans kids. But after a while, that gets a bit awkward. There are only so many excuses you can make for not getting the kids together before it looks really suspicious.

You can straight up confront your friend that you love their friendship but wish the kids could get along better. Yeah. That wouldn't strain that relationship at all. Nope. Not one bit.

Which means you're left with two choices. Either let the friendship fizzle, or just suck it up and accept that you'll have a friend at your child's expense. As a dad, it's easy for me to say that my own kid's happiness should be most important, and if he's miserable just so you can have someone to talk to, it's not worth it. But like I said, I'm a dad. I'm fine sitting on the couch with a beer in one hand and an Xbox controller in the other.

For moms, it's a lot tougher. Every situation is different and it all comes down to balance. How good a friend is this? How bad an influence is the other kid? How completely miserable is your own kid?

If it's not too bad for your own child, then it's probably worth continuing the friendship, if it's a good one for you. After all, as we get older, we all need to deal with people we don't get along with, or even out-and-out hate. So you're teaching your kids a valuable life lesson by putting them in uncomfortable situations early on. It's either that, or you other people need to stop raising sucky kids.

Have you lost any friends because your kids don't get along?

Image via Mindaugas Danys/Flickr

behavior, family, friends


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Survi... Survivingthe2nd

Are you taking questions? lol... or is there anyone that may have a suggestion? I have a wonderful friend whom I love dearly but I cannot stand her son!!!! And it doesn't really fit into the category in the article. He fights with my daughter but she's so mellow and easy going that she just shrugs it off. Its his lack of discipline that drives me nuts... he runs wild and has no consequences. I guess maybe I should be more mad at her than anything but she is so awesome I just don't know what to do!

.LoVe... .LoVeMyBuG.

Glad I'm not the only one who feels this way. I have had several friends that once we get together I have to suddenly become the babysitter, while they are oblivious to what their children are doing. It got annoying so I rarely hang out with anyone anymore, DH and I go out and have fun with our kids as a family often and to be honest I prefer going out with just them. I miss my friends sometimes but we have grown apart.

aReal... aRealteenMother

I love your articles, Andrew. "It's either that, or you other people need to stop raising sucky kids." Just awesome, lol.

Luckily, I haven't had to deal with that yet. My daughter is 16 months so her "friends" are all around the same age.. and well, babies are mean lol. There are only really two babies she plays with anyway, one is two weeks younger and the other two months older and I babysit them so if they're hitting each other or whatever, I can take control.

stork... storkneedsgps

I have a friend whose children are not allowed in my home. She and her husband do not watch their kids and they've broken things, hurt themselves, broke a window and seriously injured our dog. Her stepson is rude and sits on the couch with his father and they loudly demand I serve them because they are "the men". She's a lovely person but I can't deal with her kids and husband

MomLi... MomLily67

it's a tough one!! many many times the parents get along great but the kids are a liability for the frienship, hahaha!!!

But, yes, you can be friends just with the adults and not have your kids be friends.

nonmember avatar mommasticky

I had a friend who I loved hanging out with. BUT her kid was so obnoxious! Regardless of whether or not my kid was with me, I just couldn't stand her kid! She and her husband did not discipline their kid EVER. She ran wild, broke stuff, threw stuff at me, and they said nothing. They claimed she had ADHD(never diagnosed by a professional) and discipline didn't work. So the kid basically ran their household. When the kid acted like that, I would just leave. I was not going to try to discipline their kid in their house. BUT if they ever brought her to my house and she acted like that, I would scold her. They never said anything to me about it. I would start off by saying "in this house, we don't behave like that. If you continue, you can't play with such-and-such toy" or something like that. It was my child's toys anyway. So in a nutshell, if the kid acted up at their house, I left. If she acted up at my house, she got punished. I also find it kind of funny that they claimed discipline didn't work, however, it always did when she was at my house!!!

Irma_C Irma_C

My friend is an awesome person but when she tells me she's coming over and her kids are with her I find an excuse to go to the store or luckily I am not home. Her youngest is 3 months older than my daughter and her oldest is a year older than mine. The few times they have been over they play with my daughter's toys but exclude her and if she tries to play with them they tell her the toys are theirs and move away from her. She brings them over with candies and let's them run wild through out my house to where by when they leave the walls, the tile, and the furniture is all sticky, candy stuck to things, and candy wrappers everywhere, they run inside my house which my daughter doesn't do because she knows she will get in trouble. Of course I can't tell them anything because their mother is right there but she doesn't tell them anything either. And obviously I can't tell her anything either without looking rude. However, when my sister comes over and her kiddos act like demons I get on to them and vice versa when we go to her house. Honestly sometimes I think its just better to call her or text.her rather than have her come over with her.daughters that I am going to spend over an hour.cleaning up after.

Sweet... Sweetness88

Okay, Moms!!! Me and one of my best friends have been friends for 8 years. Since our kids were 1 years old. I used to keep her son daily and he wasn't a bad child. Over the past year or so he has gotten horrible. Not only is he disrespectful to her, but any adult that he sees. I stopped giving my opinion because she doesn't make him be respectful towards me and I refuse to put up with it. But lately he has started picking fights with my 3 and 1 year old. Even threw a football in my 3 year olds stomach. She said something to him but it was like she did it before I could say something myself. She is the God mother of the 1 year old and always ask can the kids spend the night. I refuse. I have an almost 10 year old daughter that makes sure she looks after her brothers, but this is getting old. I'm just not sure what to do because she knows his behavior and we have even talked about it. She doesn't do anything about it but always have an opinion on my kids.

nonmember avatar Dave

I think a friend with a difficult kid gives my kids the opportunity to learn how to get along with different people. Generally, though, I find that all kids can find some common ground and get along. Most men do this as well by bonding over sports or whatnot. I've had more issues with my wife not getting along my friend's wife ... that's where you'll find the real problem. Kids are kids, men are men ... but women are different. :)

Charl... Charlies_mommy

I have been blessed! My kids have no issues with any of my friends kids! In fact my best friend's daughter and my daughter are best friends too! Its the cutest little thing ever! They are so similar though I really am surprised they don't bump heads.

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