You're at the park and you see her. She's wearing the boots you were obsessed with last season. She looks as bored as you feel. You approach her and she smiles! In fact she's warm and funny, she's really funny. You ask her if she fancies grabbing a coffee some time and she says she's trying to give up caffeine but she'd love to. You're trying to give up caffeine - this is amazing. You ask about her child and she has a kid the same age as yours! It's all fallen into place. You've found your mummy best friend. She points out her little angel and the warm fuzzies fade as you watch him trying to decapitate a labradoodle. Here's your four step plan for what you do when you love her but you can't stand her kid.
Step 1) Register your complaint
A lot of mothers are blind to the faults of their little cherubs but still very sensitive to criticism. They may deal with the issue head on if you actually have the guts to spell it out. Here's a quick guide to highlighting specific problems:
Assertive = violent
Talkative = loudmouth
Confident = mannerless
Spirited = wild, uncontrollable heathen
When using your chosen term pause dramatically before saying it and ensure you're wearing a confused, slightly pained expression. Something along the lines of the face you would make if you had ordered a meat pie only to bite into it and discover you had been given cheese and onion. You want your demeanour to say I can tolerate this but it's not what I desire. Give her at least 48 hours to respond before moving onto step two.
Step 2) Set the tone
Get a mums only night out on the schedule STAT. Let it be known that it's her you want to bond with. Say things like, 'I love meeting people that want to talk about more than children.' Try and establish a grown up only friendship and you might bypass the horror of playdates. If she refuses to read between the lines move on to step three.
Step 3) Ask her advice
One for the more cunning amongst us. Tell her you want advice on the behaviour of your own child and then point out all the gremlins you've noticed in her little one. Don't go to town, you don't want her to catch on but take careful note of her response. If she dismisses you or says the words 'grow out of it' you may want to move swiftly on to step four.
Step 4) Let her fail the probation period
As soon as you realise the situation is unsalvageable, get out. Get busy. You don't have time to waste because if you wait too long she might try and leave you alone with the child. A good trick is to pretend that you have something contagious and then never contact her again. If this doesn't work and she confronts you, you can always claim the kids just don't get on.