Dear Harlan: My daughter is a freshman in high school. She has had a group of friends since she was in elementary school. They have recently decided to part ways. My daughter says these friends have started to experiment with drinking at parties and they don’t want her around. I know girls will grow apart, but the problem is that many of their moms are my friends. One in particular has asked me why my daughter is not part of the group. I can’t tell them what my daughter shared because that would cause even more drama. On the other hand, if my daughter were making unwise choices, I would want to know. How can I share what I know without implicating my daughter? The entire situation is upsetting. Any suggestions?
— Parenting Problems
Dear Parenting: You absolutely can’t tell these moms that you heard their daughters are experimenting with alcohol. What do you think will happen next? I’ll tell you. These girls will call you a liar and blame your daughter for telling on them. It will all come back to your daughter. You can guarantee it. Teenagers experiment. All parents should be discussing these issues with their kids. Parents should also discuss vaping, drugs and sex. That’s the conversation you can have with your girlfriends. What are they saying? What aren’t they saying? Ask for advice. Talk about these issues without implicating or making accusations. Your daughter’s conversations with you are sacred. Unless someone is in immediate danger, there is no reason to discuss this with the other moms. Teenagers grow in different directions. Hope they will find each other again.