Imaginary Friend

When toys, furniture and adventures are not enough to feed the child's imagination, they made up an imaginary friend. Many children age between 3-6 have imaginary friends. Often the first children in families have imaginary friends. For some children, their beloved doll or teddy bear is their imaginary friend, while for others, an invisible person appears as their best friend. Children with imaginary friends are often described as bright and imaginative. For children, imaginary friends are like members of the family; It is always with them when eating, in the car, at family gatherings. The name of this friend can be a name that the child has created himself, or it can be a well-known name. These friendships end after a while.

Sometimes imaginary friends are children's second personalities, they do bad things and they say bad words. And sometimes this friend is just the perfect playmate. Make-up games have an important place in the development of the child. Imaginary friend is also an extended part of this made-up game. Make-up games give the child a chance to learn roles, relationships, power and control. In general, the parents make the decisions about the children, and the children want to take control of the decisions about themselves, even if it is a little bit. For example, children do not like to go to the doctor, but when they return from the doctor, they do the same to their imaginary friend. Make-up games usually start at age two and up. Until the age of five, the line between fantasy and reality is blurred. To the child, play is real. Researchers state that dreams are harmless, they help the child understand the difference between dreams and reality, and define the imaginary friend as the part of the child's personality that needs to be understood and completed. If the child produces an imaginary friend and attributes negative behaviors to him, it shows that the family environment is not conducive to the emergence of these behaviors directly. In this case, the parents should try to understand the movements that the imaginary friend reflects and reveals. Not understanding the child's feelings and not helping him prevent him from going to the parents when he really needs it in the future. It also causes the child to think that they are loved only because of their positive behavior. Parents are advised not to reject the imaginary friend; because this friend is an important key to understanding the child's problems.

If your child's imaginary friend continues after the age of 6, if his routine has started to negatively affect his life, if he avoids communicating with other children and wants to spend time with them instead of doing something in the real world, it is useful to get expert support.


Sukru Cido MD.