DEAR HARRIETTE: I am about to go to a parent-teacher conference for my daughter. I know that generally she is a very good student, but the other day she had a challenge with some of her fellow classmates. She told me about it and was visibly upset. We talked it through, and it is obvious, at least from her description, that one of the girls was being super bossy and another didn't complete her responsibilities. My daughter was upset but asked me not to mention it. She is at the age where the social dynamics among girls can get tricky. I want to protect her even as I also want to honor her wishes. Her school usually is very good at helping parents deal with tough social problems. Should I talk to the teachers even though she asked me not to? -- Betwixt, Wilmington, Delaware
DEAR BETWIXT: The role of a parent is to guide the child to make the best choices possible and to arm the child with tools for managing all manner of situations that may occur. Yes, you should speak to your daughter's teacher. I recommend that in doing so, you ask for confidentiality. Before your conference has concluded, express that you have a sensitive topic to discuss and then describe what your daughter shared, along with her desire for you not to share it with the teacher. Ask for the teacher's guidance as well as oversight in the future, so that someone will be looking out for your daughter during potentially challenging times.