# Friends are not a zero sum game.

## You’re allowed to have friends here and friends there. They are not mutually exclusive.

We’re visiting our old hometown: San Francisco. My son is struggling with his friends here and his friends back in The Netherlands and how … this is all going to work out.

I probably shouldn’t use math with him, but math is just so clear. Isn’t it? That’s a math joke. Here’s what Wiki has to say about a Zero Sum Game.

In game theory and economic theory, a

zero-sum gameis a mathematical representation of a situation in which each participant’s gain or loss of utility is exactly balanced by the losses or gains of the utility of the other participants.

In the world of friends, this means that if you add one new one, you don’t have to take an old one away. Your group of friends is allowed to grow. You can have friends in your old hometown and your new hometown.

He doesn’t necessarily listen to what I say but I know he hears me. It’s a subtle difference that parents of young teenagers need to understand. Let them know even if it seems it goes in one ear and out the other.