Five is far too young to learn the harsh realities of friendships. I was hoping to have at least one more year before having to discuss how sometimes it is better to play with one friend at a time otherwise the outcome is going to include bitchiness, whether intended or not.
Just this year we have made friends with two other families in our neighbourhood and through this, girl-child has made some new friends, as both families have 10 year old daughters. Now essentially our family is the link between the 2 other families, they are both our friends but not really friends with each other. Well it isn’t that they aren’t friends it is more that their worlds don’t collide unless it is through us.
It didn’t matter which family we were spending time, girl-child had a new best friend in the 10 year old daughter. Until now that is. Of course a friendship that includes girls who’s ages span so many years is destined for trouble, it is just difficult to explain this to a 5 year old who is so happy having big girls to play with, to idolise and follow around like a puppy. To he honest, the older girls have been more than happy to have a shadow.
During the holiday break, the 10 year old daughters have found that they can actually be friends without involving girl-child. Today girl-child spent most of the day with one of the girls having a great time together. As it was getting late in the day, they decided to visit the other girl. Next thing you know the two older girls were planning a sleep over. Once both parents had approved to the sleep over all they wanted to do was start, but first they had to walk a younger brother home.
Eager to begin the fun, they wanted to walk her younger brother home straight away. They bullied the boys into finishing their game before they had a chance to save it, despite it being half an hour before official home time. In their wake they left boys upset that they didn’t get to finish their game and one lonely little girl wondering why she wasn’t invited to a sleep over – again.
Girl-child doesn’t understand that big girls play different games to 5 year old girls. What she really doesn’t understand is why when she has a sleep over here, both girls are invited and they all have a great time together yet when they have a sleep over she isn’t invited. What hurts her more is that she is there when the grand plans are made. Now I know, and I am sure that she knows too, that the big girls don’t mean to exclude her, but every time they run off to play without her, she curls up on the couch and cries.
I keep trying to encourage her to play with girls her own age but during the holidays it is even more difficult than during the term as so many of her class mates are away for the holidays. Hopefully going to a school holiday program for the next three days will keep her busy and maybe even encourage new friendship groups with kids closer to her own age.