Expressing your concerns about someone else’s child is not easy and should not be done lightly.

“This may actually be harder than telling someone something about their husband or wife,” Hoffman says. “It’s a very tough situation.”

His advice: Wait for an opening.

“If the other person says, ‘I don’t know what to do with Johnny,’ it may be a good time to delicately express your concerns,” Hoffman says.

But be warned: Saying something, even when prompted, may affect your friendship. And be careful that you state the facts and share your feelings, rather than diagnose or label someone else’s child.

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