Guiding Your Daughter Through Friendship Struggles

by Blythe Daniel October 23, 2023
“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” Ephesians 4:15 (NIV)

“How was your day?” It was a question I typically asked, and I expected my 13-year-old daughter, Calyn, to respond with something like, “It was OK — nothing great but OK.” But when she told me what happened during her lunch break, I struggled to hold back tears while trying to comfort her.

As I listened to my daughter share about how a group of girls left her at the lunchroom table and began whispering from another area, memories flooded back to me.

I remember being a seventh grader sitting at a lunch table and feeling unseen. Even though I wasn’t one of the popular girls, I still wanted to matter and have friends who would be constant with me.

Why are friendships with girls so hard, and how can they change in a moment?

As moms, it’s often difficult for us to help our daughters with their friendships when we remember — and even still experience — the same kinds of hurts.

Soon after my daughter and I talked about what was happening with her friendships, I came to her in sadness and shared about some struggles with my friends who didn’t invite me in or who said hurtful things. My daughter and I encouraged each other to look at the friends who were true to us and to find friends who brought us closer to God.

My mom, who has been a licensed professional counselor for many years, has long encouraged me to speak the truth in love, even in my friendship struggles. I didn’t at first understand how Ephesians 4:15 applied to friendships, but I’ve come to see this principle up close and have shared it with my daughter: “Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.”

Speaking truthfully to others and loving them when they’ve hurt us is not easy. But we can remind ourselves (and our daughters) that living in love and truth is not just a good idea — it is a prompting from God.

Here are a few ways we can encourage our daughters to be honest with their friends and guide them to seek true and healthy friendships:

  • Pray. Join your daughter in prayer over her current and future friendships. Pray over her friends by name and over those she wants to be friends with.

  • Make space. Offer a gathering for girls to craft or bake together at your home. Girls can create and share items with friends and invite them for the next gathering.

  • Mentor. Offer to lead a small group Bible study in your home so that you can have regular conversations with girls about what they face. Pledge to the girls that what is shared will not be shared outside the gathering.

  • Be intentional. Create a check-in system for your daughter once a month so that you have a built-in time to talk about whatever she is feeling. (You may need to shift days depending on how her mood swings.)

You can also help your daughter focus on finding one good friend rather than trying to fit in with several girls at once. And encourage her to seek wisdom, notice how friends treat her, and speak up when something doesn’t seem right.

Our worth (and our daughters’ worth) doesn’t depend on what our friends say or do. Our value comes from God, and His view of us never changes. Even when we doubt ourselves and wonder if we’re teaching our daughters the right things, God reminds us that even on our worst days, if we've placed our faith in Jesus, God sees us as He sees His Son. Jesus makes us worthy of a relationship with Him, and He gives us all we need to flourish with our daughters and friends.

God, please help me encourage my daughter to make the kinds of friends who will love and inspire her and for whom she can do the same. Thank You for what You will do in her life through the strong friendships You guide her to choose. Thank You for designing her to know her worth from You, which goes beyond any friendship. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Having a best friend is one of life’s great gifts. We want our daughters to have friends they can be themselves with and to celebrate their friendships. Does your daughter wish for that one special best friend? Or a circle of friends she can share fun moments and memories with? For ideas on building friendships, we invite you to check out this book: Let’s Be Friends: A Tween Devotional on Finding and Keeping Strong Friendships.



Calyn and Blythe Daniel, co-authors of Let’s Be Friends, would love to hear how your daughter has forged friendships and the consistent prayers you have prayed with her. You can check out the resources at their book website and connect with them on social media: Blythe Daniel on Facebook, Calyn Daniel on Facebook, Blythe Daniel on Instagram and Calyn Daniel on Instagram.

Enter to WIN your very own copy of Let’s Be Friends by Calyn and Blythe Daniel. To celebrate this book, their publisher will give away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We’ll randomly select 5 winners and then notify each one in the comments section by Monday, October 30, 2023.}


Ephesians 5:8-10, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord” (NIV).

What is one way you can help your daughter discern if a friend is a good friend for her?

© 2023 by Blythe Daniel. All rights reserved. Let’s Be Friends by Calyn Daniel and Blythe Daniel, 2023, Harvest House Publishers.

Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks Blythe Daniel for her sponsorship of today’s devotion.

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