When we first moved to San Antonio, we planned on staying for 5 years. It is now seven years since we moved here and I don’t think we’re going anywhere, but that is not the case for many of our friends. Every year when school gets out we always know a few families who are moving. On more than one occasion, my kids have best friends (and so have I) who have moved. It always breaks my heart when one of my children is in tears because they’re losing a friend to relocation.
Just the other night, we had a family over for dinner the night before they moved. The mom has been a friend of mine for the past few years, but more importantly my son and her son have been great friends. My son doesn’t deal well with losing friends. This particular son is more sensitive to the loss. He understands better than the rest of my kids the permanence of a move. My other kids take it all in stride, and saying goodbye for good is a lot like saying goodbye on a random Tuesday.
One day last year this particular son, having a particularly difficult time dealing with another moving friend, asked me if his friends moving meant my friends were moving too (see what I mean about him being sensitive)? It’s hard for me when friends move, but at least I can keep up with things like Instagram and Facebook. Since I can see on social media where an old friend is going on their date night, she doesn’t seem so far away.
With school starting up for us, I want to make sure that my kids are consciously trying to make new friends, even if some of them will be gone by next year. When my kids worry that people won’t want to be friends, I give them this to do list. (P.S. It is helpful for us moms, too!)
Making New Friends:
- Introduce Yourself
- Say Something Nice
- Ask a Question
- Listen to the Answer
- Be Kind
How do you encourage your child to make new friends?