Failure to discern who is a genuine, true friend and who is not, leads to being manipulated and used. This may result in, among many other things, bitterness and a crippling inability to trust others. The Holy Spirit has provided tools in Scripture to help you recognize genuine friendship. This is an essential life skill for you and your children. The Proverbs offer reliable observations about friendship. For example look at Proverbs 12:18:
"The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing."
These words provide insight about how to distinguish between the wise and the reckless. The reckless or rash person's words hurt and bring pain. They cut deeply. When someone claims to be honest for speaking his mind and yet is insensitive, remember that insensitivity is not a mark friendship, but selfishness. In contrast, the words of the wise bring healing, even if they hurt. The words of the wise are well thought out. The words of a wise person bring healing and comfort. Thus, the wise person will be a good friend. The insensitive person cannot be trusted because he will only care for himself.
Here is another example found in Proverbs 27:5-6:
"Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy."