Prickly friends are like porcupines! Ouch!

My Balcony Girls learned this lesson well yesterday, as we passed a rosebush branch around the circle. Each girl experienced the “prickly feeling” of the thorns! Ouch!

A Prickly Friend can be one of your best friends, but boy can it hurt sometimes, and it can also wear you out!

We also passed a pin cushion around the circle. What the girls didn’t know is that each “pin” was pointed down the right way, but I had stuck a needle’s end straight up in the middle! OUCH again!

The Balcony Girls brainstormed words describing a Miss Porcupine (a prickly friend!) We even role-played as if we were one!

Moody – up/down; hot/cold
Easily ticked off – picky
Rigid – always in control
Manipulative (striving for control)
Makes enemies with her words and moods
Whiner (complainer)
Judgmental of others
Gets mad at you a lot
Argues with you a lot
Wants to drag you into her drama

Is this a healthy friendship? NO!
Another person’s bad mood or outlook shouldn’t mean you have to have the same outlook in order to be their friend!

Most prickly friends are critical and fearful!

Control is an illusion, I told the girls, and often the girl doesn’t have a CLUE that she is being this way! It’s just that she’s learned to handle control in this way! But don’t let her moping bring you down.

What is healthy?
A healthy relationship is one in which your friends respect each other and can be themselves without being criticized or always corrected! A healthy friend BUILDS YOU UP, and does not tear down! (Our Balcony Girls motto! Read more about Balcony Girls on my sidebar!)

A true friend wants the best for you. She wants you to be happy, healthy and fun-loving! Not cynical, critical, and judgmental! So don’t give in to her whining.

Whining and moping are forms of manipulation. They say, “I am not getting what I want here, or I can’t control this situation.” And then that friend spirals (by words or actions) and spins out of control, because they lose their control.

What do you do with a Porcupine friend?
If you are tired of Miss Mopey (the up and down behavior), make some changes that are healthy for you.

1. Realize that your friend’s sole purpose is not to be this way. She probably may not even recognize it in herself!*

2. Speak the truth in love – ask her why she is so moody? Be honest with your friend
Tell her you don’t like the drama and moodiness and if you can, explain how it alienates her!

3. When you see the “moodiness” coming – step away. Give your friend space, and as you do this more and more, you might eventually not hang out with this friend. It doesn’t mean she can’t be your friend, but you have learned the boundaries of what is good for you! (NO MORE DRAMA!)

But Remember!
Prickly people are an opportunity to really use your discernment and observation skills, and to exercise your patience and acceptance. People aren’t always the way we want them to be, but we can still work to deal with them positively.

Given the passionate conversation that we had, starting in the kitchen around the apples, crackers and Peanut Butter Fudge snack, and then ending sitting in the living room, the girls totally got into this conversation. I had their undivided attention! They all could relate, in some way or another!

Then the craft began as we created stamped coasters

Using these supplies
3 ¾” x 3 ¾” unglazed tile
Rubber stamps and ink pads
Felt or cork (sticky sided)
Spray fixative/varnish

The cost per tile was 32 cents from Lowes. Each girl made “4” coasters!

We made fun designs

Spraying, drying and putting 4 felt squares on the bottom

All tied up, ready to give away!

I asked the girls to think of grandparents, teachers, music teachers, a neighbor – to keep in mind who they’d want to give this gift to at Christmas!

The night before, my daughter made her favorite snack of Peanut Butter Fudge! (Recipe will be included in a future post.)

Our Balcony Girls time today was another Lesson for Life! And one that even I (a BIG Balcony Girl) needed to be reminded of.

*A note to Moms: If you are like me, I’m sure you’ve realized at times you’ve fallen into the role of being a prickly person. As I explained to the girls that even adults can be this way, it was a check for me. It was also a reminder that it’s the role of parents to evaluate our kids and help them through these stages! When I told the girls this: Realize that your friend’s sole purpose is not to be this way. She probably doesn’t even recognize it in herself, I meant it! I’m sure all of our kids have fallen into the pattern of being a Miss Porcupine in some way, at some time, but it’s our job as the parent to help them get out of that character! Thank God for His grace and help!

(Thank you to my friend Lace, for loaning me the stamps and pads! And to my friend, Christy, for this fun Balcony Girls idea!)

ONE YEAR AGO on Reluctant Entertainer: Spreading Love