Episode 42 – Special Topic: How to Be a Good Friend

Year-end wrap-up: 4 areas of friendship

Kids Ask Dr. Friendtastic
Kids Ask Dr. Friendtastic
Episode 42 – Special Topic: How to Be a Good Friend
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Scroll down for DISCUSSION QUESTIONS & TRANSCRIPT

Think About It Questions

  • What are some ways that you are a good friend? (Hint: what do you do to show your friends you like and care about them?)
  • Why is it sometimes hard to be a good friend?
  • Thinking about the different friendship areas Dr. Friendtastic highlighted, fun, support, closeness, and handling conflicts, which do you think is the hardest to do well? Why?
  • What could you do to try to become an even better friend? (Think about all the areas and questions mentioned in the podcast episode.)

Transcript

Hi, there! I’m Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore, also known as Dr. Friendtastic. I’m an author and clinical psychologist based in Princeton, NJ.

This is our last episode for 2023, but don’t worry! I’ll be back in January.

If you have a question about making and keeping friends that you’d like me to answer, go to DrFriendtastic.com, and click on the podcast tab to see how to submit your question.

Instead of answering a kid question today, what I’d like to do is talk about how to be a good friend. It’s easy to notice whether someone else is or isn’t being a good friend, but it’s useful, sometimes, to stop and think about how we’re doing, what we offer our friends.

Now, being a good friend is not about just doing one thing. There are four main friendship areas I’d like us to talk about. As I go over these areas, think about what you already do and also what you’d like to do more, to be an even better friend.

The first area is FUN. Kids make and keep friends by doing fun things together. So, think about:

  • Do you suggest ideas of fun things to do with friends?
  • Do you invite your friends to get together with you outside of school or organized activities?
  • Are you open to doing things your friend wants to do?
  • When you’re together, are you usually cheerful?
  • When you lose a game with a friend, do you handle it well?

 

A second important area for being a good friend is SUPPORT. This is about being there for your friends when they need you.

  • Do you share and take turns with your friends?
  • Do you offer to listen to your friends when they’re upset?
  • Do you help your friends in practical ways, when you can?
  • Do you stick up for friends when someone is being mean to them?
  • Do you keep your promises to friends?

 

A third area for being a good friend is CLOSENESS. We all want to feel that our friends know and value us. As you get older, confiding in your friends becomes more important. But good friends also make room for their friends to have other friends.

  • Do you tell your friends about what you’re thinking or feeling?
  • Do you listen to your friends and remember what they like or don’t like and what’s going on in their life?
  • Are you trustworthy? Do you keep your friends’ private information just between the two of you?
  • Do you do things to make your friends feel special and show you care?
  • Do you accept it when your friends have other friends?

 

The final area for being a good friend is dealing with CONFLICTS. Arguments, disagreements, mistakes, misunderstandings...these happen in every friendship! The way you handle those friendship rough spots can determine whether your friendship lasts. So think about:

  • When you and a friend have a disagreement, do you compromise? (That means meeting in the middle, so you do partly what they want and partly what you want.)
  • When you feel mad or hurt by something your friends do, can you tell them without being mean?
  • Do you stop doing something when your friend asks you to stop?
  • When your friend is upset by something you said or did, do you apologize?
  • Are you able to forgive your friends for not being perfect?

Being a good friend takes effort and practice. It’s not always easy but trying to be a good friend makes it more likely that others will respond to you in friendly ways. The most important thing to remember is that kindness is the key to friendship.

This has been Kids Ask Dr. Friendtastic. Wishing you a happy and friend-filled New Year!

OR find them on your favorite podcast platform!