Is it normal for kids to be not interested in activities/other kids?

Rebecca - posted on 11/13/2014 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My kids started losing interest in activities that involve other kids. My 9yo son started to get sullen during drawing lessons and in Scouts. My daughter will be 13 in 5 months and she's also losing interest in other girls in Scouts as well and also at school. They'd rather come home with me and are completely not social. My daughter is autistic, but my son is not. Even though the older child is autistic, she has other friends who don't go to her school or any activities she signs up for. My 9yo just says that he doesn't want to. I'm not pushing them to socialize w/ kids that actually DO go to their school, but I'm getting worried about both of them. It seems like they've withdrawn lately.

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Rebecca - posted on 11/13/2014

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Hmm....my kids have never invited a friend over before. I allow them to, but they just don't....no phone conversations, no online conversations, no real-world conversations...except my daughter does talk to a friend who's a little older than her but she just stopped talking to her too all of a sudden.

Rebecca - posted on 11/13/2014

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Dear Dove,
I haven't noticed anything else about my 9yo son, but I've noticed other things about my daughter who's 12 and will be 13 in just a few months...(here is what I noticed)
1. No exercising. She loves to read books, so she stays in the sofa w/ a book. Or she's watching TV or on the computer, and also doing homework, writing in diary.
2. She can't sleep at night but gets sleepy in the noon time around 4:30-5:00 PM.
3. She has trouble w/ other girls in her grade at school
4. Mood swings....normal for puberty. She's very happy and she smiles all day, but lately, she's been more sullen.
5. The counselor told my daughter that someone she was talking to on the phone is in high school and that her older friend told the counselor at HER high school, saying she wants to hurt herself?
6. Obviously, social problems w/ other girls her age.
7. Sighing, groaning, or complaining.

Chet - posted on 11/13/2014

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If your kids are in school all day with a crowd of other children they may really need their evenings and weekends to be alone. Some kids just need personal space, and there isn't much opportunity for that at school.

Also, as children get older they often want deeper, more meaningful friendships. You have to find the right people though, and then those relationships take time to develop. Sometimes kids go through periods where they are transitioning socially... moving away from certain friends even if they haven't developed new friends yet.

Do your kids isolate themselves at home, or do they interact with you and with each other? I think that this is less concerning if your children are still interacting well with family.

I wonder too if you maybe need to look harder for something that inspires interest outside of school. Maybe they are done with scouting and would be better suited to something else - drama, pottery, tennis, swimming, archery, etc.

How do your kids feel about inviting friends over?

Dove - posted on 11/13/2014

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A normally social child that becomes withdrawn is one of the biggest red flags of depression.

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