So, basically, I’m pathetic.

Flea At the moment, one of the greatest weapons in my parenting arsenal is the “no school” threat. Flea loves school so much that if she’s dawdling getting dressed or refusing to brush her teeth, all I have to say is, “Fine, we won’t go to school”.

So it was a bit weird when I woke Flea for school yesterday and she cried. Flea’s not a big cryer as a rule (if she thinks you’ve seen her crying, she pretends her eyes are itchy) so I was a little worried, and mentioned it to the teacher. I suspect Flea’s just really tired (she’s had red eyes and black shadows around them for the last week) but you never know, I guess.

At home time, the teacher called me to one side, and said Flea had indeed been a bit tearful during the day, and they were concerned because it’s so unlike her. The teacher wondered whether Flea was a little upset because there’s a new girl in the class, and perhaps Flea feels threatened that the little girl she sits next to might become friends with the new girl. There are only 10 kids in the class, so a new pupil is quite a big deal.

Flea hadn’t mentioned anything about this – but that’s not surprising since she tells me nothing about school at the best of times. Still, that night at bedtime, we were curled up on Flea’s bed after having a story and I decided this was the perfect moment to demonstrate another one of my amazing parenting techniques.

“You know Flea, sometimes if you’re friends with someone, and then they’re friends with someone else, it can feel a bit sad,” I said.

Flea looked at me with big eyes.

I decided to keep going. “So, you might be a bit worried that they won’t be your friend if they’re friends with someone else.” 

Still silence.

“Erm, so, you know, it’s okay to feel sad. But the important thing to remember is that you can be friends with lots of people at the same time, can’t you?”

My four-year-old daughter reached over and stroked my arm, sympathetically. “It’s okay Mummy,” she said. “I’ll be your friend if you haven’t got one any more.”

I’m being patronised by a four-year-old. My life is officially pathetic.


Sally is a full-time blogger and founder of the Tots100, Trips100, Foodies100 and HIBS100 communities, along with the MAD Blog Awards. She spends a bit too much time on the Internet. She’s also a very happy Mum to Flea, the world’s coolest ten year old.

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  1. Aly
    28th January 2010 / 5:39 am

    Ah bless, I’ll be your friend.

  2. buy r4 ds
    28th January 2010 / 9:44 am

    After reading this post I must say that you are a great mother and you know very well that how to treat with your girl.Its very interesting to read about your daughter.You have done a good job.

  3. 28th January 2010 / 10:20 am

    Ha ha! Brilliant, love it. Great blog btw, keep it up xx

  4. Stefanie Hopkins
    28th January 2010 / 11:03 am

    That’s cheered my morning right up! Very funny. Hope you get to the bottom of what is bothering her though.

  5. The Mad House
    28th January 2010 / 11:06 am

    Just goes to show you, that although you often joke about it, that you are a great mother and the Flea is growing up to be a lovely well balanced girl

  6. Nikki
    28th January 2010 / 11:55 am

    Brilliant, that’s so funny I laughed out loud!!
    Hope she’s ok though.

  7. 28th January 2010 / 12:04 pm

    Oh bless her! That’s really sweet. Blimey, school is complicated on so many levels – homework, friendship groups etc. My daughter regularly comes home saying she has fallen out with her best friend. I get concerned, but then the next day they have made up and adore each other again, then they fall out, and so it goes on. She is only 6 so it can only get worse!!

  8. MrsW
    28th January 2010 / 2:17 pm

    They’re not daft are they?
    The “no school” threat is a good one, but it only works for the first 4 years… the next 4 they will bite your hand off to stay home then they hit secondary and would rather drag themselves in on their hands and knees than spend a day at home with you.

  9. 28th January 2010 / 7:19 pm

    She’s a poppet! I hope you get to the bottom of whatever it is. There’s nothing like not knowing what’s wrong with your child to make you feel really edgy.

  10. Liz (LivingwithKids)
    28th January 2010 / 7:22 pm

    She is SO perceptive your daughter! Bless her. It doesn’t sound to me as though she’d feel left out for very long, either. Invite the new girl over for tea.

  11. 28th January 2010 / 10:09 pm

    Love it! What a lovely, funny child you are raising there.

  12. Sally
    29th January 2010 / 10:42 am

    @Aly – aw, thanks for that. Can I get it in writing?
    @Rin – thanks, wild flattery is alway welcome and appreciated x
    @Stefanie – I think just tired, really. School seems to really take it out of her.
    @MadHouse – Thanks. I think she came out good to begin with, to be honest, I just have to try not to mess it up!
    @Nikki – thanks!
    @Rosie – Flea hasn’t fallen out with anyone yet, I’m dreading it though. I know I’m going to want to go and kick some 5 year old shins when it does happen. Must restrain self…
    @MrsW – in which case, I plan to thoroughly press home the advantage of the fleeting time I have it!
    @Barbara – You’re right. It’s so hard when they start school. Suddenly you’re not there to see the things that might upset them, and you’re reliant on their ability and willingless to share it with you. SO frustrating!
    @Liz – Flea only wants to invite boys round. Floozy that she is.
    @Muddling – I know, I’m pathetically grateful, of course 😉
    @Karin – of course. Top notch parent, me. *cough*
    @Elizabeth – thanks, she is adorable, I’m very lucky indeed.

  13. 29th January 2010 / 1:31 pm

    So sweet always got a friend in your daughter hehe. Poor thing I hope what ever is bothering her goes soon.

  14. 29th January 2010 / 5:48 pm

    ah, she sounds so sweet and caring. Friends forever.

  15. Catherine
    29th January 2010 / 9:46 pm

    What a cutie, I can’t wait till the bear can talk and we can have little bedtime moments like this.
    We’re still at ‘tractor’ and ‘santa’ being the only two words available, oh and ‘nana’ to illustrate his obsession with bananas.

  16. 26th February 2010 / 4:53 pm

    ha ha ha, but how wonderfully loving she is.

  17. 26th February 2010 / 4:53 pm

    ha ha ha, but how wonderfully loving she is.

  18. 26th February 2010 / 4:53 pm

    ha ha ha, but how wonderfully loving she is.