One mom’s helpful friend wants out


Dear Amy: My good friend and I each have three children in the same classes who also participate in some of the same extracurricular activities.

As parents we are flooded with information about deadlines, events and requirements. We parents share tips and help one another. But my friend seems to be taking advantage of this.

For years she has barely bothered with the emails and hand-outs detailing key information. Instead, she constantly relies on me to tell her what she needs to know — which I’ve been doing from the kids’ kindergarten through college applications.

If I say the info is listed online at a website, she’ll ask for the link to the exact page. For something particularly complicated, such as Eagle Scout projects or college applications, she’ll ask me to walk her through every step — often requesting documentation of links or resources. It’s extremely time consuming. If I say I can’t remember, she’ll hound me to look through my notes.

She’s smart, healthy, and capable. Her husband is involved and helpful.

We have similar work loads. Why does she do this?!

I’m all for pooling parent resources and helping a friend, but after 18 years of this, and with two kids still coming up through the ranks, I’m tired.

She justifies the dynamic by saying, “It takes a village!”

This villager is wondering how I get her to start doing her own research, without coming off as an unhelpful friend.

— Tired

Dear Tired: It does take a village. But sometimes, the villagers take up their torches and storm the castle.


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