My 9 year old daughter has no friends.

Louise - posted on 08/06/2014 ( 5 moms have responded )

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My 9 year daughter was sobbing her eyes out last night after we had a talk about the fact that nobody wants to play with her at school and she sits by herself in the playground.
She is a social child but is socially awkward, if that makes sense. She wants to be with other kids, but it's almost as if she doesn't know how to be friendly when she is with them. If the other child perseveres then my daughter looses those social inhibitions and plays beautifully. I don't know what to do to help her learn how to make friendships. She is a sweet, caring and funny child who I think would make a great friend, but the other kids seem to have given up on her and now she is worried that they will never allow her into their groups and you know what girls of this age can be like. She will try and join a group and they will tell her that she can't play with them that day - maybe the next. I can just imagine how heart-breaking that is for her. Friendships she does form don't last more than a week or two and then I stop hearing about that particular child.
Yesterday I found out that she had actually been lying to me about being friends with a certain girl. Apparently they don't play at all, but obviously my daughter wishes they do and has almost created a fantasy relationship to tell me about. I think she makes stuff up because she doesn't want me to worry.
I am seeing her teacher this week and I hope to get to the bottom of what is happening and then take it from there.

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Dove - posted on 08/06/2014

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The school guidance counselor or an outside counselor might be beneficial to your daughter. Often times they can 'role play' w/ the child to help them learn how to interact in certain social situations and be confident enough to actually DO it. If you are good at that sort of thing, you could role play w/ her as well.

Teresa - posted on 08/08/2014

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I would talk to her teacher. She/he spends more time with her. Tell the teacher your concerns.

Guest - posted on 08/06/2014

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School is not really the best place to make friends. There isn't enough time for children who are slower to adapt socially or who require more cemented relationships to get comfortable enough with the other children to create friendships.

Try having some of the girls over after school where they can play for an extended time one on one or in a small group. Also, whenever possible, allow her to linger a few minutes after her extracurricular activities to chat with the other girls on her team or in her class. Often extracurricular activities provide a much more accommodating environment for nurturing friendships. Also, and I know they are usually a pain, but do try to attend the team building retreats and activities the coaches organize outside of classes, practices, and competitions whenever you can. I know they seem frivolous and unimportant because they are not focusing on improvement, but often a tight bond between players can immensely improve team performance, and the added bonus is that the girls are usually friends for life--even after going off to different highschools and colleges.

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User - posted on 01/20/2017

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I'd love to hear an update on your daughter all these years later. All of the suggestions given to you I think were way off.

Louise - posted on 08/06/2014

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Thanks for your reply. My daughter is unfortunately not sporty but she loves her girl guides and pottery, where she meets girls that are from other schools. I know it sounds like a contradiction to say that she is very social but lacks friendship skills, but that is her. Loves to be around people but if they try to interact with her she comes over as very awkward and hardly putting over the message that she is looking to make friends. I try and encourage her to be more open and explain that her behaviour shuts people out and achieves the opposite of what she would like. I think she is still a bit young to really be able to understand why she behaves the way she does, but I am hoping the teacher, who loves my daughter, will be able to offer some insight from another adult perspective.

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