Nine year old daughter says she has no friends.

Talk about anything. Just keep it civil.
Post Reply
Mustloseweight
Posts: 145
Joined: Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:04 pm
Location: UK

Nine year old daughter says she has no friends.

Post by Mustloseweight » Tue Apr 08, 2014 9:09 am

Just wanted some advice really. My daughter is saying she doesn't have any friends at school. She is an only child and refuses to do any after school clubs despite me suggesting it over and over again.

It breaks my heart. I don't know what I can do. I have suggested that each day she approach a different classmate and show an interest in them, like ask if they did anything good at the weekend, help others at every opportunity, listen more than speak, hold back in disagreeing with people, and always engage in conversation if someone approaches her, etc etc

I hate to think she walks around the playground alone each lunchtime.

All advice much appreciated.

Thanks for listening.
September 2017 - Starting weight: 19st 9lbs
March 2018 - 17st 2lbs
July 2018 - 16st 4lbs
Target Weight: 11 stones

Total loss so far: 47lbs

idontknow
Posts: 811
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:43 pm
Location: UK

Post by idontknow » Wed Apr 09, 2014 9:17 pm

This must be really difficult for you. Can you ask her who she'd like to be friends with and invite them over for a playdate? Or could you speak to her teacher to see if s/he can help by making sure your daughter has someone to play with at break/lunch? Good luck - let us know how she gets on x
53 years old
Average weight loss:
May 18 - 2.45lbs

Bennedicta
Posts: 40
Joined: Sun Jan 05, 2014 5:20 am
Location: Here, there and everywhere

Post by Bennedicta » Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:21 pm

It is surprisingly hard for a teacher to suggest to another child they take an interest in yours and it can backfire. I have an isolated child and an easy going one. Easy going has often been asked to adopt another child at break and has grown to hate it. Her own friends then often won't play with her as they don't want to associate with the other child.

This is hard stuff to hear, but I know from having an isolated child as well, that there may be a reason for the isolation. My own son became desperate and resorted to silly, immature behaviour to curry laughs from the other boys. They laughed at him but didn't want to be his friend. It has taken years for him to come back from this.

I would take a deep breath and ask the teacher if your daughter is doing something that is setting the others against her. And try not to get angry with the teacher if they tell you something you don't want to hear. One child my daughter was asked to adopt pinched people for no obvious reason. Apparently the mum flatly refused to believe it.

If there is something your daughter is doing, this is GOOD news. If you know you can work with her to fix it. If the answer comes back negative, a different strategy may be needed. And this is much harder and needs an understanding of classroom hierarchy.

Each class will have a top boy and girl and the others have their places, like chickens, down to the last child. Nobody want to play with low status kids as it reduces their own status. Everyone wants to play with high status kids as it increases their own status. In one horrid school (we didn't stay long) the high status kids were very manipulative. The teacher did not see this...they were clever.... So my daughter organised a society of outcasts. She gathered the low status kids and ignored high status ones. It worked, but made her a marked child......

Remember, for someone to be 'in' someone else must be 'out'. High status kids know this.

This is a hard, and heart breaking situation. Classrooms are a jungle. There is one adult, and maybe 25 kids. In kindergarten The children who have grown up in manipulative homes quickly realise this and position themselves accordingly to control the adult. they use cute, or sport, or leadership. The adults fall for it and the kids are high status. The kids from loving, gentle homes who have never had to manipulate situations are left on the back foot. If they are a little shy as well, the writing is on the wall. They are low status, and will be forever.

I hate schools, I truanted through high school. In school 20% of the kids are having 80% of the fun. I simply opted out. I don't kid myself with my children. My boy is a gentle sensitive soul, who,literally , wouldn't hurt a fly and the other tougher more streetwise boys simply had no time for him.

Now he is in high school things are changing. He has found other boys who read books, and has discovered that some lovely girls like boys who can converse, and don't think farting is a form of wit.

Support her all you can. Try and find another outcast child and see if you can team your daughter up. Be warned your daughter may resist this if the other child is low status too. She won't want to lower any status she may have. Try and explain...assuming the other child is nice....that they can be a team of two and and it doesn't matter what the others think.

As for clubs, keep trying. Or try and find family clubs, or things like conservation volunteers you can do as a family. You may meet other families and make friends out of school with the whole family. It is also good for making friends of different ages. A younger child looking up to yours is a great confidence booster...being a role model helped my son discard some of his more obnoxious behaviour.

Sorry this has been so long. My heart goes out to you. Pick what helps and dump the rest. And give your daughter a cuddle from me.

Benni

eschano
Posts: 2632
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:20 pm

Post by eschano » Thu Apr 24, 2014 12:28 pm

Hi Mustloseweight,

I wrote a long post with lots of tips how to improve this situation but in the end it only comes down to what really matters (which is not having lots of friends):

Help your daughter find something she loves doing that makes her happy no matter what and encourage her to meet other people who love doing that thing. That sounds a lot better than going to a social club, plus if she doesn't make friends she will still find happiness in what she is passionate about, even if it is reading and writing (the more asocial hobbies).

Help your daughter to be a good friend. In my experience people who are good friends have good friends. People who are unforgiving or not loyal or a bit so-so about their friends have few or no real friends. What it means to be a good friend for me and this list is really not exhaustive: be discreet with their privacy, be loyal, have fun together, stick together during bad times, don't walk over the other person and don't let the other person walk over you - have boundaries, communicate well, value each other's differences and similarities, never judge but do be honest and help each other to be the best you can be.

And: be a role-model. Make sure she sees that behaviour from you with other friends.

Last tip: Make friends with mum's with daughter's your age, preferably from a different school, so she can get to know the daughters.
eschano - Vanilla rocks!

July 2012- January 2016
Started again July 2018

User avatar
harpista
Posts: 186
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 9:13 pm
Location: Stouffville, Ontario, Canada

Post by harpista » Sat Oct 25, 2014 9:33 pm

This is a very late answer, but is your child neurotypical? I'm not, and I had a great deal of social problems at certain ages, and widely fluctuating "status level," depending on situation, and the relative maturity levels of myself and my peers.

Even if your child IS neurotypical, it might be worth trying: there are books and other resources for children with social problems (typically aimed at those on the autism spectrum but also for other reasons). These resources have a lot of tools that might be "duh" to the extrovert and useful information to the introverted, or shy, or those with some condition that makes normal social functions a challenge.

At the age of 9, I had a lot of problems with others because I was intellectually gifted, and emotionally quite the dunce. Being out of step with peers in development can hurt, either way. Only the most socially adept ever get away with being amongst the smartest of the group (because they know how to NOT offend others with it, not something I learned easily). Only those most gifted in non-academic ways got away with being "dumb." Those who are immature are scorned.

Does your child have an illness, disability, or physical disfigurement of some kind? Other kids often don't know how to relate to this. Additionally, I have noticed over time that some kids who have the chronic illnesses are just "weird" in the other kids' eyes because of it. From what I have seen this has several components: the sick child relates to other kids too much the same as they would to adults, because of lots of time with adults being treated; and in some cases, they are out of sync with popular culture; and in some cases, they are extremely sheltered; and in some cases, their grooming or hygiene is off or different; and in some cases, they are inward focusing (by which I mean various degrees of selfish, concerned only with their own needs, but also concerned only with their family, their interests, etc., and not that of others).

Additionally there are some kids who are never going to fit into a regular school with status based on looks, money and sports. That same child could be a star in another school. I attended three high schools and the one that served me best, where I was happy and had a wide variety of friends, was an arts magnet, audition only public high school. NOTHING like my experiences at either a public high school or a publically-funded Catholic school (that's a Canadian thing). Several classmates at my arts school were then appearing on Canadian television in advertising and TV shows, and mentioned they had transferred because administration would grant time off for "work," but even more importantly, they were quite literally hated and bullied by others at their local neighbourhood school. The same was true of several gifted musicians, etc.
Nulla palma sine pulvere.
'No garland of victory without first the dust of the arena.'

Sometimesians, unite!

Dianamoon
Posts: 15
Joined: Fri Jun 05, 2015 3:03 pm
Location: NYC

Re: Nine year old daughter says she has no friends.

Post by Dianamoon » Fri Jun 05, 2015 5:38 pm

mustloseweight wrote:Just wanted some advice really. My daughter is saying she doesn't have any friends at school. She is an only child and refuses to do any after school clubs despite me suggesting it over and over again.

It breaks my heart. I don't know what I can do. I have suggested that each day she approach a different classmate and show an interest in them, like ask if they did anything good at the weekend, help others at every opportunity, listen more than speak, hold back in disagreeing with people, and always engage in conversation if someone approaches her, etc etc

I hate to think she walks around the playground alone each lunchtime.

All advice much appreciated.

Thanks for listening.
This is awfully late - are you still there?

I can relate, I felt very isolated and alone in grade school. I hope you don't take what I'm saying in the wrong spirit because I really only mean to help but I think you're going about it in a way that will only deepen her isolation.

Instead of focusing on what the other kids like, why not focus on giving your daughter some practical skills and habits that will equip her for a lifetime of achievement on HER terms?

Does she study an instrument? Does she take dance? Participate in a sport? Drawing? Writing? Astronomy? She has at least one talent, probably more than one. Have her develop that and forget about being popular. She will attract other people when she learns confidence, and confidence comes from mastery.

AgarJames
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2015 8:48 am

Post by AgarJames » Fri Jul 17, 2015 8:59 am

The first thing to do is to determine whether or not it really is.
If you see a pattern that concerns you - or if just want to be sure - check with her teacher. Ask the teacher about the incidents she described to you and how she is interacting with the students in the class in general. Has she really been getting in trouble?

Talk to the school staff about it, to see if it's an issue they can help resolve.The school guidance counselor or an outside counselor might be beneficial to your daughter.

Asda

Lady Crimson
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:19 pm

Re: Nine year old daughter says she has no friends.

Post by Lady Crimson » Sat Jul 02, 2016 2:10 am

mustloseweight wrote:Just wanted some advice really. My daughter is saying she doesn't have any friends at school. She is an only child and refuses to do any after school clubs despite me suggesting it over and over again.

It breaks my heart. I don't know what I can do. I have suggested that each day she approach a different classmate and show an interest in them, like ask if they did anything good at the weekend, help others at every opportunity, listen more than speak, hold back in disagreeing with people, and always engage in conversation if someone approaches her, etc etc

I hate to think she walks around the playground alone each lunchtime.

All advice much appreciated.

Thanks for listening.
What was the context of this statement? Did she volunteer the info or did you ask her about friends? The reason I am asking is that your daughter may be an introvert. She may not want to be friends with any one in her class. I generally only have one or two close friends at any one time. There is nothing wrong or abnormal about being an introvert--it's not the same thing as shyness. Introverts enjoy their own company, find it entergizing and do not get "loney" by being alone. Introverts also find groups stressful and draining.

Find out what she enjoys. Does she read or like the outdoors? Encourage her to explore and develope her interests and talents. I second the whole pecking order crap. Kids are cruel. Your daughter may just need to get though childhood in one piece so she can shine and thrive as an adult.

Tombo
Posts: 97
Joined: Tue May 01, 2018 2:18 pm
Location: UK

Post by Tombo » Mon May 07, 2018 8:40 am

I was unpopular throughout prmary and secondary school so I can relate to your daughter. They say school is meant to be the best time of your life but for me it was horrible and horrid.

Being unpopular is a horrible thing to go through, particularly as a kid as it affects your self-image greatly and I grew up feeling like a freak, an outcast and a weird person.

The first time some one told me they found me attractive, I laughed because in my head I had no conception of how that could be true and it seemed like a joke.

It took a long time for me to start to like myself and it is still an ongoing struggle. I don't really like myself at the moment but I'm trying to get better from my issues.

One of my best experiences as a kid was on a summer camp for St Johns Ambulance, I didn't know anyone apart from a few people I had met at the camp the year before. At this camp I made lots of friends and I was popular there, it felt so good but then when I was back to school I was back to a low status kid and it sucked.

When I was 16 I went to college and it was great meeting lots of new people and not having my former school baggage.

I still dealt with being treated like a second class citizen when I was at uni though so it is an ongoing thing.

Now I recently moved back to my parent's house as I was going through a bad spell with my mental health issues and left my job and it is quite isolating here as I have not many friends round here, just one who lives in a neighbouring town.

I go to exercise and dance classes though so I have met people through that but most are senior citizens so there is quite an age gap.

One of them invited me to a party a few years ago which was fun and I met her for coffee this year

It is hard and a struggle tbh

idontknow
Posts: 811
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:43 pm
Location: UK

Post by idontknow » Sat May 12, 2018 4:56 pm

I’m sorry school was so difficult for you and that things are still hard. I’m sure they will improve because you sound like the sort of person who keeps on trying and doesn’t give up . Hugs and lots of good thoughts x

Post Reply