9 yo not 'fitting in'
, Feb 01 2013 12:36 AM
4 replies to this topic
Posted 01 February 2013 - 12:36 AM
Hi,My 9 year old is really struggling socially with his age group at school. He moved schools almost 2 years ago ( we moved countries) and has just never settled with a good group of friends, he's generally a smart, social kid so I never expected him to have trouble making friends, but the last month or two of school last year he was really getting down about it and he's not looking forward to starting back at school this year, so I want to sit with him and work out a plan for how to approach this year differently, but really I'm not sure what he/we should do.
One thing is that in his year there is a group of about 10 boys ( there's about 20 boys total in his year), there are all smart, sporty and popular and he wants really badly to be part of this group, but they just haven't accepted him, we've invited them all for playdates and they seemed to have gone well, but he has never been invited back to theirs in return and they never want him to play with them in school, so in my mind he should forget about them and find some other friends. The other thing with the popular kids is that their parents also all socialise together, like every friday and Saturday night, and like a lot of alcohol, they are all very close and go away for weekends together and things, so I guess it's a tough group to crack.
So that was the plan all of last year that we would work on friendships with other kids instead, we have been seeing them socially, also socialising with the parents and they all seem to play together well, but then in school they all have their groups and he never seems to be included in them. There is one boy who is a sweet boy, not really popular or socially aware, and my son has been hanging out with him quite a bit, I'm encouraging that friendship and they've had some playdates over the holidays. But DS is just so aware, and tells me things like 'My only friend is XX and he will be friend with anyone, so while I think that it's good to have a reliable friend he can count on, it seems that the friendship is not helping his self esteem at all. There has been some bullying as well, but to me seems that it's the friendship situation which is getting to him. And the bullying is a symptom rather than the cause of the issues (he gets bullied by some of the other kids, not he's bullying).
We discussed it with his teacher last year and I was quite annoyed that she seemed unable to offer any advise, she couldn't tell us why he didn't have friends or suggest any kids who would make good friends for him. I feel that she's the one who sees him interacting with his peers in the school environment, so she should be able to help identify the issue. She did indicate that he is more socailly aware than most kids his age and this may mean that he's more sensitive to any issues.
I feel that he is a bit bossy with his peers and will not accept others telling him what to do, so that's one thing that I'm trying to get him to work on. It's interesting that he often plays at lunch with older kids (2 years older) also with his younger brother and his friends (who are two years younger) and seems to get on very well with both, but I don't really encourage those friendships as I think it's most important to get along with his classmates.
I'm not sure that anyone will have any real advise, probably the answer is 'it's just part of being a kid' but it's so hard having him come home in tears because he feels so left out and alone, and as his Mum you want to fix every problem for him,
If anyone has any ideas or tips would be great,
Posted 01 February 2013 - 12:54 AM
Does he do any out of school activities? If he has friend's out fo school, he won't be so downtrodden about not having so many school friend's....also, some of the school kids he may want to be friends with may also do those activities and that will be another avenue for him to connect with them.
I remember from school days, that a lot of the kids that hung around together, actually didn't socialize out of hours, and that a lot of the kids were better friends outside of school, and only spoke to each other briefly at school. It was odd, but that was the dynamics.
It must be so hard. My ds is much younger, so not yet in your boat, but I can sympathize...he seems very popular, all the parents know him, and kids keep asking him to be invited, but he never gets invited by the parents....and he keeps asking why and getting down about it. We just tell him they might be busy, and occupy him with our own fun activities
ETA: sorry about autocorrect
Edited by envs, 01 February 2013 - 12:56 AM.
Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:09 AM
He has been doing 'after school care' which has some kids from his year, and funny that some kids who play well with him there will not play with him at school lunch. Just as often though he will be playing with his brother.
He does some sports, tennis, teeball and taekwondo, but not really any kids from his year doing any of those, the 'popular' kids all do football and cricket but he's not been interestd in doing either of those. I was thinking of boy scouts, but they have a long wait list here, like a year, so it wouldn't change anything in the short term. We might be able to fe him into a group further away but then there wouldn't be anyone from his class at all.Mb
Posted 01 February 2013 - 06:43 AM
That's a huge group of kids! Our school wouldn't let a group like that exclude anyone.
I would make an appointment to speak to the teacher. Is he in a class this year with some of the other kids? Sometimes that can help especially if they get grouped together for anything during class or sit near each other. When DD#1 was younger her teacher helped by sitting her near a couple of girls in her class and she gave me some names of girls she thought DD#1 night get along well with.
I was going to suggest after school activities as that usually helps with self esteme even if there are no friends from school there. It helped my DD#1 when she was younger.
We don't do playdates after school as we are too busy between after school activities for all 3 and homework.
Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:09 AM
A couple things have stood out here,
1). You say he can be a bit bossy. This can be an issue to break into a long term group. The group dynamics are already there, if your DS is trying to walk in and change things suddenly, then the other kids will back away from him. He'd be better to sit back and watch how the group works and learn to add his opinion once he has 'broken in'
2) afterschool activities can be good to meet kids who aren't necessarily in his school. If he has good friends out of school that he can relate with, then he will be more confident during school.
3) get him to work more on the friends that he has at ASC. Get them over for playdates. When the other parent picks the child up, mention how well they get along. If you feel comfortable enough with the other mum, maybe mention that your DS is struggling with forming friendships and you would appreciate it if she could reciprocate the play date (as long as the other child wants your DS to come over!)
The above are just my observations from my 12 yo DD and 9yo DS. DS did have a year of so where he flitted between friends. He now has 2-3 close friends and a wider group that splits and fractures and then joins again. It's a fluid thing. Boys don't seem to create the deeper friendships that girls do as early. DD has 2 good friends and a wide group of other girls that has been pretty stable since Kindy, but DS' friendships are changing all the time. It seems to be based more on who is in his actual class each year.
Edited by Coffeegirl, 01 February 2013 - 07:10 AM.
1 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users
to WIN 1 of 2 $500 Coles/Myer gift cards
Your schedule is not important to your two-year-old, and you cannot convince her otherwise. So what can you do?
A child whose remains were dumped in a suitcase in the South Australian bush is believed to have been a girl aged between two-and-a-half to four.
An Argentinian mum and politician has caused a stir on social media after being filmed breastfeeding her baby.
It was 1am on a cold winter's night when I woke suddenly to the screams of my 12-month-old son. Our lives were about to change forever.
Inflatable and portable children's pools may be required to be sold with compulsory fencing to prevent backyard drownings, with some experts even floating the idea of a ban.
At 11.07am on April 2 this year, Sarah Marriott welcomed baby Sebastian into the world.
These kids' beds definitely fit the brief of providing personality and personal space for little people who are moving up in the world.
Since becoming noticeably pregnant, my son has taken more of an interest in the sibling he'll soon have.
In this age of political correctness, it seems the one subject still subject to discrimination is that of the Only Child.
A neighbour heard a child screaming before a baby was found dead, believed to have been stabbed, in a house in Newcastle.
So far, 206 Samsung washing machines have caught fire and some have exploded. But many remain in people's homes.
We all know that having a baby can turn your life upside down - and it can also bring a raft of new anxieties and worries.
Couples using IVF may be able to choose the gender of their babies and women could be financially compensated for donating their eggs.
Not too young, and not too old. That's reportedly the best age to get married. Not everyone agrees.
After giving birth, the last thing you want to think about is contraception. But you can get pregnant before your period comes back.
Parents of toddlers everywhere know the feeling. After working up the courage to take your child out for lunch or dinner in public you are rewarded with a mid-meal meltdown.
Two children were killed when pieces from their Malm furniture line tipped over.
If you're looking to introduce an organic element into your baby's nursery but want to step away from natural timber, we have the perfect alternative.
I am in no way qualified to advise women on how to cope with hyperemesis, but I've learnt some lessons that might be worth sharing with other partners.
Best friends share everything - and for these two life-long friends, that includes family.
Samuel Forrest didn't want his wife as a trustee of their baby Leo's half million dollar trust for her own "protection", it has emerged.
Men who become fathers experience weight gain and an increase in body mass index, a measurement of body fat based on height and weight, according to a new, large-scale study
She said the photo of a boy with Down syndrome in a washing machine was taken just for fun, but no one else was laughing.
An opulent high tea at a luxury Melbourne hotel has left 44 people with salmonella poisoning - including a pregnant woman, who went into early labour.
Would you know what to do in a fire emergency? How safe is your home and family?
Prince George's second birthday has been marked by the release of an official picture showing the toddler smiling as he is held by his proud beaming father.
Is it safe to use fake tan, hair dye and nail varnish during pregnancy?
The truth is, I can no longer deny that my walking, babbling, somewhat-independent little miss is no longer a bona fide 'baby'.
I'm not usually one who believes in love at first sight but that's exactly what happened when I first saw the Cybex PRIAM.
Get your free ticket to the Sydney Essential Baby & Toddler Show for September 25-27 - register online now.
to WIN 1 of 2 $500 Coles/Myer gift cards
I believe that you get out of families what you put into them, and I will give mine my all.
I have had two postnatal psychotic episodes. The first when my eldest child was six weeks old, and another after my second child was born.
French names are always in fashion, but a few have risen in popularity in recent years.
A British woman who gave birth in Spain has told of her ordeal after spending weeks trying to convince medics the baby girl was hers.
Some friends of ours say that it's dangerous to have a dog around a newborn and that we should start looking for a new home for him. Is it?
First Apple and Facebook announced they would pay $20,000 towards the cost of their female employees freezing their eggs, now IBM in the US has come up with an innovative new policy aimed at retaining female employees.
The Duke of Cambridge opened up about family life and his plans for the future in an interview to mark his first day as an air ambulance pilot.
A simple photo taken in front of an evening fire gave new mother Sarah Bowers the power to save her baby's life.
Of all the advice people told me before having a baby, no one warned me about the amount of decisions involved.
Parents of toddlers all know the moment when realise your child is being suspiciously quiet. It can only mean one thing - trouble!
If you have trouble recalling the ages of Jeremy Ryan's seven children on The Voice, you're not alone. So does he.
Getting glasses can be a formative moment in a person's life.
When a mum of six was caught shoplifting nappies, clothes and shoes for her kids, the last thing she expected was for a stranger to pay for her haul.
The risk of having uncontrolled depression is far greater than the small increased risk of birth defects that may be associated with specific antidepressants.
Police have raided properties and arrested a number of people over a brawl at a child's birthday party at a play centre in Sydney's west.
Looking for a creative way to share some big news? Look to the skies, like this family did.
Little Owen DiCandilo's name means "young warrior", and it's a description that perfectly fits the inspiring 18-month-old
The exhaustion that comes with caring for young children often means romance between parents becomes a thing of the past.
I've been fat for pretty much most of life, besides a few crazy moments of being less-fat, but for the most part I've existed on this earth with a little more meat on my bones than desirable.
Since the dawn of civilisation, generation after generation of new parents have had to rely on instinct, trial and error - and sometimes get it wrong.
Get your free ticket to The Essential Baby & Toddler Show and save $20 - register online now!