Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Friends for Life: Fostering Childhood Friendship

This post was inspired by a picture I took of my son with his best friend during a play date at the zoo.  I posted it on Facebook, and had some positive comments; but the one that really resonated with me  was  my husband's comments:  "Looks like friends for life!"

I know they will be friends for life, as a matter of fact they are best friends!  I smiled, and felt truly and immensely happy! You're wondering what's the big deal about that? Continue to read, and I will tell you why. :)

When I met my husband, married him and decided to start a new home & family in a place that I knew nothing of, and knew no one at all was a huge leap of faith; and needless to say a struggle. It's hard to be an outcast, and stand out because you're not from "here"; even smiling at someone from your same culture (because you can relate to them); and not getting a smile back was even harder.

Then everything changed when I had my child. I was determined not to be an outcast anymore, and I certainly wasn't going to allow my multiracial child to feel that way either. I was in desperate need of friends, and I wanted my child to have friends, too. I searched on-line for a local mommy play date group, and lo and behold I found one! This group has been a blessing in disguise! I've made some really good friends here, and our children are friends, best friends, and even buddies! We've been to plenty of birthdays, outings, parties, and lots of play dates, and it has been a joy to see my child make friendships.

Rainbow of friends! 
My son has had the opportunity to interact with children of all ages, and races; therefore helping him develop emotionally and socially. His friendships also fosters diversity, and acceptance of each child's individuality. I especially love to see how they play, bond, and learn from each other. 

There are so many benefits of children having friends, needless to say adults need friends, too! You as a parent, can help foster childhood friendship (adapted from here) by: 

  1. Leading by example. Your children will emulate your social skills when interacting with others. 
  2. Provide opportunities for your child to spend time with other children: play dates, library story time, etc.! 
  3. Sign your child up for a sports, or learn a new game: soccer is a great team sport, or ballet dancing. 
  4. Teach your child how to act or behave in different social situations. 
  5. Set ground rules: manners, boundaries, etc. 
As I mentioned earlier in my post, I am truly happy for my child. Not only for my child and his friends, but because I too, have friends! I no longer feel like an outcast, but part of a wonderful circle of friends! I also know in my heart that my son too will have life long friends.

***This blog post is dedicated to the my mommy friends, and their children :) Thank you for your friendship, and for our children's friendship as well!***

What ways do you foster childhood friendships? I would really love to hear your comments. Please pin, like or share.

12 comments :

  1. I just read the blog and my heart melt....i being one of the youngest of the mommy group felt like my age n experience was going to play a part but all of you give so much great advice n i love n enjoy the company if each of you! Thank you so much!!!

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    1. Ahhh thank you!!! You're a great mommy and a great friend! Hugs!!!

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  2. Alleyah Watson-WilderJanuary 15, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    This is a wonderful blog!!!!! I value you and your family soooo much!!!

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    1. Thank you! I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed writing it.

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  3. Aw! I love this! The pic is great too. I have to admit I had the same thought as Ivan. My heart is full of gratitude for your friendship.

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    1. Awe, thank you!!!! Really hope you enjoy reading it.

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  4. Aw! That's so sweet! We've always enjoyed our playdates as well!

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    1. Thank you so much Renee! I am blessed to call all you wonderful ladies my friends! and our children are friends, too.

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  5. Great post! It's the simpler things we take for granted that we have to remember, thanks for reminding us :)

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    1. So true, and thank you for stopping by!

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  6. Beautiful post Frances - I'm so glad you and your son found that group and that it means so much to all of you. Your warmth and humor shine through in every post so it's really hard for me to imagine you ever feeling like an outcast - I picture you more as the life of the party!

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    1. Oh my goodness Jody your words brought tears to my eyes, because believe it or not I felt like an outcast for a very long time, and I missed terribly my life, friends & family in Puerto Rico. I had a hard time adjusting! Wow, me the life of the party? LOL I guess now I am. Thank you, thank you for your kind words.

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