So I have two teen daughters. My oldest is a freshman in college (still living at home) and the other is 16 and a junior in high school. My 16 year old has a friend that she met in preschool and they've been friends ever since. She goes to our church and her parents have worked for the church. Well, this girl is not always the kind of girl that I want my daughter to emulate but I've seen my daughter being strong and able to see the good and bad alike in others. So we've allowed the friendship to continue - although not too close that they're spending all their time together but they still have a connection.
Unfortunately, this weekend something happened and it's obvious that this other girl does not respect anyone but herself. They went away with the youth group and they roomed together with 2 other girls and my poor daughter, who worked just before and was going to be working right after the trip, couldn't get any sleep because the other girls were acting like 12 year olds. In the little time that my daughter DID sleep, they drew on her face and took pictures - putting them up online. My daughter saw the pictures and IMed her friend asking her to take them down and the "friend" refused saying that my daughter needed to lighten up. She then went on to say nasty things to my daughter about her and her father and I (she's never had good things to say about us). She finally at the end said she'd take the picture off of the internet - but she still hasn't done it a few days later. Other things have gone on (I've typed up a lot and deleted it because I don't really want to pass around gossip) and the bottom line is that my daughter's heart is broken because her "friend" has chosen her own pride and popularity over my daughter. 12 years of a friendship is down the tubes. Dad and I aren't sad over losing this friend necessarily but my heart hurts for her. After she came home from the trip and explained some of what went on to me, I encouraged her to find some better friends - friends who had an obvious relationship with the Lord who would encourage her and pray for her - sharpening her as Christian friends do. She never had that with this friend.
Raising teens is so rewarding and I have not had any of the terrible things happen that people kept warning me about but there's always going to be things out of our control. All we can do is pray that they would be wise in their dealings with others and surround themselves with wisdom rather than fools.
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