“But I want to play with her!” said she. “Alright sweetheart, then go on. Play with her”. I said. “No, I want to play only with Sam. She cannot play with other kids while I’m playing with her”, said our visibly distraught daughter. “We cannot force her to play with you. She’ll play with you if she wants to. And she did invite you to play with her friends, too”.

“No, no no! She has to play with me”, our daughter went on. “Alright, do you want to play with the other kids?”

“No”

“So, can we force you to play with them”

“No”

“So how do we force Sam to play with you. She can decide for herself”.

Every time we tried reasoning with our daughter, it brought on a fresh onslaught of tears and arm wringing and foot stomping. It broke our heart to see her crying the way she was. After trying for 15 min, we gave up and said that we should go home. This had been happening for a few days.

“But I want to play!”

“But you aren’t playing sweetheart. You are just crying in a corner of the park while other kids are playing. Let’s go home”

“No” she said. “I’ll play on my own. I’ll not cry anymore.”

“Do you promise?”

“Yes

“Do you want to make new friends?”

“Not today, today I’ll play on my own”

I fought back tears as she suddenly became all brave. She didn’t cry again. She didn’t insist on playing with Sam. She had experienced her first heart-break. And she had learnt to deal with it. She was ready to face life 🙂