Parenting expert backs BAN on primary school pupils having best friends because it makes them 'possessive' - but GMB viewers brand the notion 'ridiculous'
- Parenting expert said she supports a ban on best friends in primary schools
- Liz Fraser said it can make children 'territorial' and 'possessive' of their friends
- Many viewers disagreed with her, with one saying it was 'ridiculous' to ban them
A parenting expert voiced her support for moves to discourage best friendships at primary schools - because it's too 'territorial'.
Speaking on Good Morning Britain on Friday, Liz Fraser said she backed schools where pupils are taught to refrain from having a single 'best friend' - which is the ethos at Prince George's school, Thomas's Battersea - because it makes children 'possessive' of one another.
The mother-of-four, who said she didn't have a best friend herself while growing up, said she believes it's a good idea to have 'broad' friendship groups.
But viewers watching at home branded the notion of preventing children from having one best friend 'ridiculous'.
Parenting expert Liz Fraser supports a ban on children having best friends in primary schools because it makes them 'territorial'
Fraser said while she didn't think a best friend ban could be completely enforced in schools, she supported the idea because it 'separates' children.
She explained: 'It immediately [separates] this friend out as being different from all other friends, which immediately sets you into a mini group.
'Some children don't have a best friend, I didn't have a best friend, if I did have a best friend I think it's because no one wanted to be friends with us.'
Fraser called on primary school teachers to encourage children to have a large group of friends, rather than one 'best' one.
Viewers were shocked by her comments, with many saying the mother-of-four supported the ban because she didn't have a childhood best friend
She said the concept of best friendships was more relevant to female pupils, and makes little girls 'possessive' of their best friends.
She continued: 'Boys don't have best friends, they have mates whereas girls have a best friend. It's very territorial, it's quite possessive, and for me there's an element of it's actually not to do with this friendship, it's more about telling everybody else this is my best friend.
'I think it's a good idea to try and keep things a bit more broad.'
The debate arose because of recent news that some American schools have banned best friends because it can make children without one feel lonely.
She argued that it is often little girl who have best friends and it teaches them to be 'possessive'
Viewers were shocked by the argument, with many accusing Fraser of not understanding why children need best friends as she didn't have one herself growing up.
One tweeted: 'The only thing that got me out of bed & to school was to see my best friend! Let children be children.'
'We've turned into a right nation of p******,' another posted.
A third agreed: 'They don't always have a concept of a ''best'' friend at this age. Stupid discussion.'
Psychologist Dr Mark Rackley said having a best friend at a young age teaches children how to build relationships
Fraser was countered in the debate by psychologist Dr Mark Rackley, who said having a best friend is important because it teaches them important life skills about forming relationships.
He also said having one particularly close friend is important to children who don't have any siblings.
Dr Rackley explained: 'Where best friends really come into their own is with children who have no siblings so that best friend can be a substitute brother or sister.
'The best friend is the only supportive relationship that child might have so pulling that away might actually damage the child more than letting the child have a best friend.'
Most watched News videos
- Irate dad drags man off stolen bike on busy Cardiff street
- Debris falls from Trump Tower as fire erupts in Midtown Manhattan
- Boy who's been bullied relentlessly attempted to take his own life
- Four alarm fire at Trump Tower in New York City
- Instagram star who take breathtaking photos of parks savaged online
- Shocking moment bullfighter has leg ripped open by a bull
- Sharina Hudson drives through red light in NYC while on phone
- Eager fan brings turn tables crashing down at music festival
- Toddler's horrified reaction to the Easter bunny goes viral
- Two men arrested in Luton for allegedly shooting Imam
- Car smashes into both sides of motorway as driver has a 'seizure'
- ‘Bra Boy’ Koby Abberton asks for help after Bali house fire