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Friendship battles among children have existed since the words ‘you can’t play with us’ were first uttered in the playground.
But the worry is that today it seems there is no minimum age limit to being hurtful to others. Unkind or exclusive behaviour appears to be starting sooner than ever – even in nursery school – and continues throughout the school system. As a result, friendship issues top the list of parents’ concerns, and, from the other side of the school gates, they can often feel powerless.

This book will change that as parenting writer Tanith Carey analyses the increasingly complex social pressures changing the face of childhood, having drawn on extensive research on children’s friendships, from toddlers to teens. She offers practical solutions for building your child’s social skills for a happier, more carefree childhood, including how to:
– Help your child deal with classroom and social media politics.
– Inoculate your child against the effects of peer-group pressure, cliquiness and exclusion.
– Learn what’s really going on in your child’s social circle.
– Bully-proof your child throughout school.
– Work out when to step in and step out of your child’s conflicts.
– Help your child make friends if they are stuck on the sidelines.

The Friendship Maze is suitable for ages three to sixteen.


The Friendship Maze helps parents navigate the journey of their child's social relationships and provides invaluable insights and advice to parents. Long overdue!
Emma Citron, Consultant Clinical Psychologist
Helping our children to navigate the complexities of friendship is a challenge for us all. This book offers invaluable information and practical advice. If only it had been available when my own children were younger.
Julian Elliott, Professor of Educational Psychology, Durham University
Probably the most important thing our children could ever learn is to have solid, healthy friendships. In this ground-breaking book Tanith shows parents how they can help their children through often tricky maze of friendship and develop the skills they need to have relationships that thrive. Such an empowering and positive guide to support children's emotional wellbeing and resilience - a treasure of a book and much needed in this digital age that throws up a host of new friendship issues.
Becky Goddard-Hill, parenting author and blogger
Tanith Carey's newest book, The Friendship Maze, is refreshingly positive and practical. She fearlessly tackles the minefields in children's friendship-making, for example an over-reliance on social media, bullying, and the pressure to grow up too fast. No problem is considered too trivial to be ignored; none is seen as impossible to solve. In every section, she offers a list of specific, practical tips parents can adopt straight away. Best of all to my way of thinking, her suggestions show parents not how to step in and sort things out. Instead, she teaches parents how to empower their children to solve their own relationship problems and to find ways to weather the inevitable difficult patches as they grow up.
Linda Blair, Clinical Psychologist, regular contributor to The Daily Telegraph
This excellent book guides parents through the ups and downs of friendships, giving information on when to step back to help develop independence and when to step in to help build up skills. Friendships are now played out 24/7 in the digital world. Understanding this world and its importance for boys as well as girls, primary as well as secondary school children, will empower parents to promote positive, healthy friendships. The social networks we live in are crucial for our well-being. Making and keeping friends is one of the most important skills we can ever develop, and yet very little is written about it. The Friendship Maze is a must-have guide to help parents and their children develop this essential tool.
Dr Angharad Rudkin, Child Clinical Psychologist
This is the sort of instructional parenting skills handbook I would have KILLED for when I first became a mum. In a world of huge stress and pressure for our kids this guide to helping them better help themselves through the minefields of friendships in an era of social media is a MUST for any parent.
Nadia Sawalha