Friendship puzzler #47: You like your new haircut, but a friend told you that another kid said it looks silly. You should:

Answer: A. Definitely don’t confront the other kid! It’s hard to accept, but what someone says behind your back is none of your business. People are entitled to their opinions, and they’re even allowed to express them in private conversations. Your friend shouldn’t have repeated the other kid’s unflattering comment. The important thing is that you like your haircut. But even if you didn’t like how your haircut turned out, there’s no need to focus on everyone else’s opinion. Also, having–and even expressing–different hairstyle preferences is not bullying. It’s not reasonable to think that everyone has to admire your haircut!


Friendship Puzzler #433: Your friend asks to copy your answers on a homework assignment. You should say:

Answer: d or e — Unless your teacher has given you permission to work together, sharing or copying answers is cheating. Don’t let yourself get talked into doing something that you know isn’t right, even by a friend! You can say no without being mean. You may have to say no more than once if your friend keeps asking. In some situations, you may be able to help your friend without cheating, by explaining how to do the work.

Friendship Puzzler #26: How many times should you apologize after you’ve accidentally hurt, upset, or annoyed your friend?

Answer: a — A sincere apology is a wise and caring thing to do when you’ve upset a friend. You don’t want to end a friendship over a mistake! Say you’re sorry, say what you did wrong, and tell how you’re going to avoid doing it again. (What will you do the next time you’re in that situation?) But what if your friend also did something wrong? Your apology might inspire your friend to apologize to you. Even if your friend doesn’t apologize, you’ll know that you did the right thing. Don’t apologize again and again. That’s just annoying. Say it once and mean it, then move on.