CHENNAI: Remember when the first person in your circle of friends started dating? Remember how important it was to like the new person in their life? How, you were sometimes torn between being ‘nice’ and saying it like it was? It’s a recurring theme in one’s life. Meeting and liking the friends of others. Your boyfriend or girlfriend’s friends, then your spouses/life partner’s friends, then your life partner’s friend’s life partners.
There seems to be a constant expansion and contraction in this paper chain of friends and acquaintances as people and their romantic choices impinge try to join and are at times, cut out. Then you have children. Initially, kids are ‘friends’ with whoever you want them to be friends with. Your friend’s children and kids from the mother toddler group. But as they grow up they begin to make their own friends. And soon that contracting expanding circle of friends is being torpedoed by very small beings.
So, tell me honestly, do you REALLY like all your friend’s children? Are there kids out there who set your teeth on edge? Kids who just rub you the wrong way? Or do you? Here are the 5 kinds of friends all our children will have at some point of time or the other. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
World-ly Wise: Ah. This is the young know-it-all who doesn’t know a thing. The person who’s been there done that, or at least watched it on TV. They will happily misinform your children about things with the utmost conviction.
They are the main reason an entire generation grew up petrified that they were pregnant because they had touched a bottle gourd when menstruating.
Mr Hunger Games: Forever hungry, this child will turn up at your house and ask ‘Are there snacks aunty?’ They will wander into the kitchen as dinner is being made and sniff sadly ‘My mother never makes pasta for dinner.’ When they’re offered nice biscuits to snack on will turn their nose up and ask ‘What else is there to eat.’
Hid the Welcome Mat: Some children have no curfews. At age 8 they are allowed to stay out for as long as they like, and enjoy proclaiming this loudly whenever you’re in hearing range.You can play ‘Hit the Road Jack’ as loud as you like, but they aren’t taking the hint.
The Smart Alec: Sure they might win a Nobel or a McArthur one day, but man are they as annoying as hell now. They know the answer to everything, know when you’re bullshitting and aren’t afraid to call you out on it. Keep Google deployed and ready.
Butter won’t melt in my mouth: Oh my god! What a face! These kids make cherubs look like they’d hold you up in Grand Theft Auto. But you know. You know they’re plotting world domination. They are the font of all evil. Sleep with one eye open.
And just in case you’re nodding vigorously as you read this list, remember before you judge them, your own little angels tick one (or all) of these boxes on another parent’s list.
Speaking of which, you think these kids are bad? Wait till you meet their parents.
(The writer is a former copywriter whose parenting philosophy is: if there’s no blood, don’t call me)