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by Abigail Van Buren

Group of Friends Splinters Following Sleepover Snub

DEAR ABBY: My 11-year-old daughter recently asked to have a sleepover with some of her best friends. She's part of a "club" with five other girls. Four of them are her best friends, so she invited them. However, my daughter is not close with the fifth girl, "Debbie." They don't hang out at school and barely hang out during their club activities.

When Debbie's mother found out my daughter had invited the others, she accused me of excluding Debbie intentionally. I received a rude text from her telling me they were quitting the club.

In the past, we have gone above and beyond to keep her daughter included in the club activities, but when it comes to my daughter wanting to hang out with her friends outside of that, I feel she should be able to invite whoever she wants. Should I have made my daughter invite Debbie to her sleepover even though they aren't really friends? -- "MEAN MOM"

DEAR "MEAN MOM": Obviously, Debbie is close enough with some of the other girls that they told her about the sleepover. Your daughter may not like Debbie as much as she likes the other "club" members -- which seems more like a clique to me -- but I don't think that's a reason to exclude or attempt to isolate her. Because all of the other girls were asked, Debbie should not have been snubbed. For a moment, put yourself in her shoes.

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