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What do I say to my friend?

I have a friend who is constantly criticizing her son. Granted, he isn't the best athlete or the smartest kid in the class, but it isn't like he is a total failure. We have boys the same age and have commiserated over the years about some of the problems we have faced with their “head up their butt” issues. However, I’ve come to accept my son’s failings but she can’t, and frankly I am starting to worry about her son’s self esteem.

What can I say to her to help her accept her son as he is without offending her? I feel so bad for her and her son.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 12:25 PM on Jan. 19, 2010 in Teens (13-17)

Answers (6)
  • Keep mentioning his good points. Focus on the positive to help balance out the negative she's seeing. That's so sad. He will only hear that negative and feel like crap if she doesn't stop it.

    Answer by admckenzie at 12:28 PM on Jan. 19, 2010

  • When you witness it ask her if she thinks it hurts his feelings, or if she talks bad about him in front of you ask her if she talks like that in front of him and say "if someone talked about me like that it would hurt my feelings." "Kids make mistakes, they learn from them.." Use a soft approach, but use one. My husband sort of did this with my daughter but just didn't realize and he's so much better now. Of course I didn't really have to worry about hurting his feelings, but I didn't want him to feel criticized either.. also this:

    Answer by Seven07 at 12:30 PM on Jan. 19, 2010

  • I am sure your friends son has some positive qualities, I would recommend you start focusing on them. I think your friend just needs someone to vent to and for advice.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:35 PM on Jan. 19, 2010

  • You could also turn the situation around and say that someone mentioned how critical you were of your own son and that he would suffer for it later in life with self esteem issues and depression. That way you are not pointing the finger at her directly, but at yourself and perhaps, she will see herself in the mirror?

    Answer by neebug3766 at 9:40 PM on Jan. 19, 2010

  • yes i aggree with neebug3766, very good advice, and if you also help by approving of some things your friends son does yourself out loud so her son can hear also will help, or say you watched a tv programme, on self esteem and say im going to stop being critical to my own son as its not a good thing to do

    Answer by niceandspice at 8:55 AM on Jan. 21, 2010

  • Nothing. It's none of your business

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:46 AM on Jan. 21, 2010

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