I’ve fallen out with my best friend over differences in the way we bring up our young children, and I don’t know how we are going to make up. We’re both 34, but the similarities end there.
I have a baby who’s one year old, and a three-year-old who is a real handful.
My friend has four children – it was her sole ambition to get married and have a family. She has a completely different style of parenting to me.
I work in an office four days a week. My children go to nursery and my mother collects them afterwards and takes them home for tea.
I have every Friday off and devote the whole day to spending quality time with my children.
My friend, on the other hand, is a stay-at-home mum and brings her children up herself without using childcare.
We tend not to discuss our parenting styles, although there is an unspoken tension between us because I know she doesn’t agree with me having a career and raising children.
But the other night after we’d both had a few drinks, she told me that she thought I didn’t spend enough time with my children and that I’m grumpy with them because I’m stressed from work.
I was shocked and hurt – I would never dream of criticising her like that.
My husband thinks it will all blow over and that it is not worth losing our friendship for, but I can’t bring myself to call her. I’m still too angry!
She hasn’t called me either. Maybe she’s embarrassed – or angry because I told her to get lost!
Does your friend not realise it’s a total no-no to have a go at someone else’s style of parenting?
You have to do what works for you and your family, and she has no right to judge you by her standards.
It sounds like this has been brewing for a while and it’s come to a head when you’ve both had a couple of drinks.
I think you can patch it up, but not by avoiding each other or the issue.
Is the real reason for the bust-up due your friend being jealous of your life away from the children and the house?
You need to have a proper discussion without alcohol to get it all out in the open.
If you were best friends then there must many good reasons to sort out your differences.
You could wait for her to get in touch or be the bigger person and call her.
But let her know you’re still upset and angry, and that you need to thrash it out with her.
Being a working mum is hard enough without criticism from those who should be there to support you.
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