Is My Son’s Best Friend Stealing Him?

Dear Sara,

My fifteen-year-old son has a best friend and they are always together. His friend’s parents really like my son and include him in all their family activities. I like his friend but my son is spending more and more time at his house. I really would like to have my son home more often but I don’t know how to accomplish this without interfering with their relationship. What should I do?
-Isabel

Dear Isabel,

It sounds like you approve of your son’s relationship with his friend and feel like this is a positive thing, however, this is your child and you need to be there to give him your input and family values. It appears that things have gotten out of your control and this is making you feel uneasy. It’s OK for you to set limits on the amount of time your son spends at his friend’s house. Let your son know that you are uncomfortable with the situation and also how much time that you feel is the maximum that he can spend there.

I hope that you are willing to have his friend visit at your house so that they can still have their time together. Sometimes there are families who seem to attract all of the kids in the neighborhood and make their home a place to gather. If this is a positive situation and your son feels part of a group, then you may want to allow him some freedom of choice here. If you find that the reason that you don’t want him over there so much is that you miss him, let him know that as well.
-Sara

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