How-to help your teen to choose right friends

your teen to choose right friends

Help your teen to choose right friends: The Biggest choice that affects our character is the choice of our friends. People have done in life because of bad friendship.

We have heard many such stories were the result was that they fell into bad company. Nobody falls into a bad company it is not a hole on the ground that someone can accidentally trip and fall into.

Friends are important in everyone’s life. As your teens enter teenage years, they become more concerned about making new friends. Or we can say friendships become more important to your child.

No doubt, positive and accepting friendships are vital part of teenage journey. We do not want our teen to make wrong choices. We cannot allow every person as our child friend. To avoid bad and toxic friends we should give proper guidance help your teen to choose right friends.

We choose our company and that company can turn out to be good for us or bad for us.

As parents it is our duty two teach this basic thing to our children. Which is “the choice of choosing a friend lies solely and wholly on us”. And we are 100% responsible for the choice that we make.

So, I have outlined below how I went about to help my teen to choose their friends. Tweaking it and making it better with each child. And it is an ongoing journey.  And I hope it will help your teen to choose right friends too.

Topics

  1. Why you should help your teen to choose right friends?
  2. 4 Traits of an ideal friend (4 C’s)
  3. 10 types of friends your teen should have?
  4. 7 types of friends your teen should avoid?
  5. How to develop friendship skills in your teen?
  6. Word of caution to parents
  7. Conclusion
your teen to choose right friends - quote

Why you should help your teen to choose right friends?

Teenage friendships are very important in your teen personality development. Teenage friendships are like personal support group to your teen. From good friendships your teen can learn and get following things and that is why you should help your teen to choose right friends.

  • Your teen learns self-worth and feeling of being valued from good friends.
  • Good friendships can build confidence in your teen
  • Your teen can feel secure and comfort with good friends
  • Your teen can spend quality time with good friends
  • Learn information about puberty and changes that adolescence brings
  • Or they can learn about physical and emotional changes from similar experiences
  • Can explore new things and places
  • Can learn way of adjustment with different values and identities
  • Experience with people of opposite sex
  • Can enjoy life in a better way
  • Can adopt good traits of others

When your teen has good circle of friends it is less likely that your teen might suffer from anxiety and depression issues. So, all the more reasons for you to help your teen to choose right friends.

If you like to know more about these issues do read our article How-To SPOT & DEAL with Teenage Anxiety Issues and How-to find out if your teenager is battling depression? respectively.

Traits of an ideal friend (4 C’s)

To reiterate, The Biggest choice that affects our character is the choice of our friends. So, as parents we must teach your child the 4 traits of good friend when you go about in help your teen to choose right friends.

Constancy

Good friend will always be a good friend. Will stand with you thick or thin. They will not be the type who will share only your highs and not be there during your low.

You can always count on them to be there for you no matter what. Even if you are in a situation because of your own fault they will still stand by you and help you through with it. And not be judgmental and cynical about you.

Candor

The definition of candor is the quality of being open and honest in expression; frankness. A good friend will be frank with you and always tell you the truth.

They might sugar coat it or sometimes wont. Might try and put it to you in a way you will understand. But they will never be silent and let you do what they believe is bad for you.

You can count on them to give you an honest opinion.

Council

Wisdom, A wise friend. A good friend will give you advice. Sound wisdom. They will show you ways in which you can tackle the situation that you have gotten yourself into.

Stand by you and help you through each stage till you get out of the situation.

A wise friend is someone with whom you can have deep meaningful conversations. And one who will always be there to give you guidance when you seek without imposing things on you.

Courtesy

The definition of courtesy is the showing of politeness in one’s attitude and behavior toward others. A good friend will always be courteous.

Never rude or cut your confidence down. They respect you and they behave with you in a manner which makes you feel important and heard.

My Story:

When I had taught my daughter this for the first time.  She told me that she does not have a friend like this.

So, I flipped her statement and asked are you a friend like this?

And then came the words that warmed my heart. She said I have not been a friend like this so far but going forward I will be one like this.

10 types of friends your teen should have

Peer pressure in teenager

Now we will discuss about good friends that your teen should choose and how can educate your teen and help your teen to choose right friends.

Talk to your child on different types of friendship and ask them to evaluate the friendship they have.

Have friend who give balance to your personality

Tell your teen we all have our weaknesses and strengths; with right friends and company you can overcome your weaknesses and can can give more nourishment to your strengths.

Guide them how they can learn from their friends in their area of expertise. For instance, may be your teens do not love exercise or meditation, but they have friends that love proper exercise and meditation, so they can get their help.

Likely, tell them how they can help their friends from their area of expertise and skills. Guide your teen how they can win by utilizing each other skills.

Have friends with great motivation

self confidence in your teenager

Things become easier for your teens when they have a good group of friends who give motivation and encouragement. Ask your teen to avoid friends with negative motivation and negative energy.

Tell your teen, best friends are those who give motivation and positive spin in difficult situations.

Tell them to have people around you with more positive energy and with more uplifting and not energy vampires.

Friends with similar interest and hobbies

Usually life become more interesting when we have friend with similar interest. Tell your teens if they really want some fun in life they should go for friends with similar interests.

Tell them they can enjoy outing and outdoor activities with such kinds of friends even more. They can have friends with similar interest in music, sport, education, acts or even in foods.

Friends who thirst for knowledge and self-improvement

Life is all about learning and when your teen has friends who have thirst of knowledge your teen become more excited to learn new things. You can find them always seek knowledge be it through books or through the net.

Such kind of friends give positive energy in learning new things. They are knowledgeable and your teen can have interesting and in-depth conversations with them.

Guide your teen about such kind of friends and ask them to have at least one friend with such trait.

Have friend who celebrate your achievements

Tell your teen it is so great to have people around you, who will celebrate your special occasions with excitement. Because a true friend always celebrates every accomplishment and success of his/her friend. Guide your teens they surely have some friends who genuinely become happy from your success.

Friends with similar values

Diversity is good thing, but we cannot compromise on our family rules, our beliefs, and values. So, it is best for teen to have friends with similar values to avoid future problems.

It is best to keep close friends with like minded and like beliefs people. Because the problem can start when your teen negatively influenced by values which compromise your standards and values.

Tell your teen that it is good and easy to be friend with people having similar values.

Honest and wise friends

Mother and daughter. Emotional connection with your teenager

Tell your teen try to get along with people who are honest and reliable. These are the type of friends who your teen and trust and ask about any tricky situation or dilemma your teen has.

And trust them to come up with an honest answer and at the same time to be wise enough to guide you through the sticky situation. This kind of friends are good friends.

Have friends with common goals and desires

Tell your teens when they have friends with common goals and desires, it become easier to get their future goals.

Friends with similar goal give kick to each other, they can push each other to reaching their common goals. So, it is important for your teen to have some friends with common goals.

Loyal friends

Guide your teen there is nothing more precious than a loyal friend. Someone who is loyal is reliable and a true person. So, they should try to make friends who are loyal to them.

They just love you for who you are and not go around talking behind your teen back. They stand by you though your ups and downs and are not shy to be called your loyal friend.

Finally – The soulmate

Sometime one friend can fit into many shoes. E.g. Your teen can have Loyal friend who is also honest and wise and have similar interest and hobbies as your teen.

They have a positive outlook to life and thirst for knowledge and self-improvement. (looks like I have just described my best friend and this friendship started in my teenage years and going strong even till now.).

If your teen is lucky to have such a friend, it is almost like finding a soul mate whose friendship will last a lifetime.

To parents:

When your teen has good set of friends who are reliable and look out for the best interest in your teen. Friendship that is filled with respect and mutual trust. Then it is less likely that your teen will face unwanted peer pressures.

In fact, a good friend will protect your teen from other social pressures that your teen might face by being strong support to your teenager. So it become that much more important for you to help your teen to choose right friends.

However, as parents it is wise to have a discussion with your teenager about peer pressures and how to handle them. Do read article 5 Effective ways to deal with Peer Pressure to get some insight into it.

When your teen finds such a friend. Embrace them and welcome them to be part of your family. So that the friendship can be nurtured.

7 types of friends your teen should avoid

 When you go about education your teenager to help your teen to choose right friends. You should also educate them about the different toxic friends out there and how to spot them.

Selfish friends

Tell your teens to avoid friends” it is all about me’’ type. Selfishness is a bad trait and we should avoid people with such trait. The person who only focused on themselves never be a good friend.

Friendship is all about give and take. Selfish friend is one who takes much more from your teen then what they give back. They always try to keep finding what they can get out of a certain situation How much they can get out of the situation.

Friends who are Violent and Adrenaline seekers

Anxiety issues in teenagers. Boy ready for a fist fight.
Boy ready for a fist fight

This kind of people can make or pressurize your teen to get violent or take unnecessary risk. My son had one such for few months and ended only after he got a broken leg and was pulled out of his cricket class that he loved.

He came to his senses during the recovery period and then used his own methods to move away from such a friendship.

Ask your teen to avoid being friend with such type.

When your teen mixes with these friends there is dangers of your teen inducing in risky behavior. Read related articles How-To find out if your teenager is using drugs and How-To talk to teen about Sex, Drugs and Alcohol

Friends who thing only of their own interest

The people who use your teen for their aims and objective with attention, do not deserve to be friend with your teen.

Ask your teens to avoid friends who ignores them completely and always think about themselves and only associate with your teen when they want something to be done by your teen.

Such kind of people are usually opportunistic people who ‘use’ others good nature and move forward. Your teen should make distance from such folks.

The haters

Ask your teen to completely avoid such kind of person. These people often show hate towards everyone and everything.

They look for the bad in people or things and come up with some reason to hate.

Association with such friendship can poison your teens mind and outlook in life. Encourage your teens to think about how much destruction someone like this can cause to their lives.

Nasty or wicked friends

Such kind of people are totally disaster for you child personality. You should guide your teens about these. These people are cruel and downright mean. Its as if they lie awakes unless they have hurt someone.  

They want to dictate other lives and want a pose to enforce their control. That is why your teen should make distance from such friends.

They pass sly remarks that can cut and slice anyone’s self-esteem. Associating with such people your teen can face the pressure to be rude for the sake of being rude.

Self-Loathing friendships

Guide your teen about this kind of friends. These are the people who always think bad about themselves. They have a low self-esteem and they always act to be in distress.

As a result, if your teen spends too much time with such peoples the chance is more, they tend to like themselves less.

Friends who cross your boundaries

A friend who does not care for you boundaries and always enter in your private zone is not a good friend at all.

Educate your teen about these. Your teen should avoid such kind of people.

Tell your teen to be friend with people who show respect to your limitations and boundaries.

How to help your teen to make friends

Some kids by nature do not like to have many friends. My son is one as a gang of friends while my second son Loves to hang around with me and hardly with his friends.

So, I have listed below few things that I have tried out to help my little one makes more friends.

  • Send your teen to hobby classes that they are interested in.
  • Encourage your teen to invite friends over to your house for play dates. Make sure your house is warm and welcoming so that the kids who come there feel comfortable.  Give them the space they need and do not intrude.
  • Take your teen along with you when you go for parties of functions that you are invited to. Do not pressurize your teen to a company if they really do not want to.

My second son hated parties and functions he was very introverted in nature. One of the things that helped me was that I would tell him well in advance and let him decide if he wanted to come.

  • Encourage your child to participate in school activities, volunteering work, part time job etc. It will help them stop sticking around and locking themselves in their room and give them opportunities to socialize.

To Parents:

If you really want our teen become good and ideal friend, then you should start from your relationship with your teen.

That is why staying warm and supportive and active listener in your relationship with your teen can help to develop good friendship skills in your teen. Try to be a good role model.

You can also praise your child when they show traits of trusting and helping to others. This thing encourages them to keep working on positive social habits.

Most important thing

It is important to find out from your teenager what is preventing them from making friends.

Is it because that they are shy or introvert in nature? Or because they are scared and afraid of being not accepted or bullied.

Is it because they lack the self-confidence to approach another person and try to be friends?

You can do this by building a strong emotional bond with your child. If you like to know more about how to build an emotional bond do read our article How-To Easily build Emotional Connection with your Teenager

As parents one of the things that we can do is to provide many opportunities to our children to socialize with other children and increase their chances of making friends.

We cannot force a child to make a friend or have a friend. This can only lead to stress in your teenager and your teenager’s self-confidence will take a beating since they would feel that they are not living up to your expectations.

If you like to know more about how to build self confidence in your teenager do read article How to develop self-confidence in your teenager

If you teenager is happy without many friends happy in their own space. Has very selected and few people with whom they have deep and meaningful conversations with.

If there are no other disruptions that will affect their life. It is all good.

Caution to parents

Fathers deal with teen sons. family photo with two sons

Friendships are part of your child’s daily routine. You cannot restrict your child from making new friends.

The only thing you can do is a proper guidance that you can provide to your teens about the types of friends or which friends are good and which are bad ones for them.

If you find any friend of your teen not good, do not say directly to your child to break up with that friend.

Read the article on How to Get your Point Across to Your Teenager to help you better when you communicate with your teenager on this topic.

Try to show bad habits of that friend and ask them what they think about that person. In a friendly way, you can deliver your message to your teens about their friends.

At the end,

I just want to say good friends are blessings. A good friend can help your teens in their personality development.

Tell your teens not every person deserves to be their friend. Your proper guidance can prevent your teen from bad experiences.

Guide them what kind of friends they should make or what kind of friends they should avoid.

In order to help your teen to choose right friends. Do not meddle directly with their friendship. Tia will only aggravate and and your teen will get only get more aggressive and angrier with you. Try to influence your teen.

For some reason you land up with one very agitated an angry teenager article on How to effectively deal with Teenager Anger and How-To Handle Teen Backtalk and Disrespect will be able to help you a bit on how to deal with your teenager.

Respect your teen and their privacy. Do not overstep your borders and do not prion them. That is a type of emotional abuse that you will be placing on them.

Video Time

Difference between good and bad friends

Conclusion

We choose our company and that company can turn out to be good for us or bad for us.

As parents it is our duty two teach this basic thing to our children. Which is “the choice of choosing a friend lies solely and wholly on us”. And we are 100% responsible for the choice that we make.

While we make this very clear to our children. Our duty does not end here. It is our duty to impart knowledge into our children and not take it for granted that these are very common things and they would already be aware of.

I would rather say even if they were aware of and it is very common. You still go ahead and give the needed awareness and help your teen to choose right friends.

And complete your duty of telling it to your child. So that you are surer that your child has received the needed message about how to choose their friends.

God Bless!!

We hope this blog has been helpful to you. If Yes, show us love by sharing the blog post with your friends and loved ones.

Tell us about your teen’s friends and did you face any challenge with them? Leave your comments below.

Thabitha David

Thabitha David

Mother, Wife, Daughter, Sister, Aunt, Friend. She is a MBA Graduate specialized in Human Resources. She is a very proud mother of 3 Kids. (2 Teens & 1 Tween). She is a keen Observer of Life and is a blogger. She writes these articles based on her experience (Success and Failures). She does this with hope to help and ease the pain of at-least one parent as they face the challenges of parenting. Read more from the About Us Page

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  1. August 25, 2020

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