Foust Law Office July 2019



Raising kids can be a challenging endeavor. When Heather and I married in 2013, she agreed to take on not only a husband but also two boys: Andrew, 12, and Chandler, 11. The boys are now 17 and 18 years old and face growing up in a world very different from the one Heather and I knew when we were teenagers. We are far from perfect parents, but we do our best. Our newsletter chronicles some of our successes and some of our less-than-stellar moments. We hope you can learn from some of our failures and find some entertainment in the moments we share. KIDS AND FRIENDS


to do with encouraging their friendships with positive people. Over 20 years later, I tend to believe she was right. The question is, how is this done? A recent study published in the“Journal of Social and Personal Relationships”shows that time is the primary factor in the development of friendships. In the study, 112 freshmen at a university were surveyed. The freshmen were asked about people they had met since starting school two weeks earlier. They followed up with the participants four and seven weeks later to see how their relationships developed. Based on this information, the study found the following:

has developed a close group of friends, about six young men, who are referred to at Bozeman High School as“The Boys.”They were all brought together through the football program, and a few of them are going to continue playing in college. Over the past four years, their common experience has made them very close. They refer to their group as a brotherhood. Our son Chandler has also developed a very tightknit social group. Chandler’s group consists of 8–10 boys and girls. What has been fascinating is watching how the inclusion of girls into Chandler’s group of friends has changed the dynamic of the group compared to“The Boys.”The group with both boys and girls has a very different set of interests than “The Boys.”As parents, we are absolutely thrilled that these two groups have been very positive influences on our children. Judge McCarter was probably right. Our kids need to be surrounded by positive people, and it takes a lot of time to develop friendships with these positive influences.

My best friend growing up in Columbia Falls, Montana, was a foreign exchange student fromArgentina named Dante Fratta. Dante showed up inmy town of about 5,000 people in Northwestern Montana after only being in an English-speaking country for six months. Dante Fratta’s“inferno”involved this youngman being thrown into the fire of Columbia Falls High School with a very limited English vocabulary. My father was a United States Border Patrol Agent. His job required that he speak Spanish, and he may well have been the only person in Columbia Falls in 1987 who was fluent in Spanish. About six weeks into the school year, Dante made his way to our home and was able to speak to someone other than the Spanish teacher in his native tongue for the first time in six weeks. It was like watching my puppy eat dinner. Dante devoured the conversation. It was a very interesting way to begin what would become a lifelong friendship. Judge Dorothy McCarter once gave me advice on parenting about five years before my first son was born. She explained that the No. 1 factor in keeping her kids out of trouble had

It takes 50 hours of time together to move from acquaintance to casual friend.

It takes 90 hours to go from casual friend to friend.

It takes 200 hours before someone is considered a close friend.

As we watch our boys develop friendships, I wonder which connections will develop into lifelong friendships. Our son Andrew

- Lucas Foust

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