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No friends - too early to start worrying yet?

(2 Posts)
Noomininoo Wed 21-Sep-11 22:21:13

My DD1 (4.3yo) is in her 3rd week of reception. Prior to starting she didn't know anyone who was going to be in her class (as her nursery friends all went to different schools) so, as soon as we knew that the little girl who lives across the road from us (lets call her J) was going to be in her class we set up a couple of play dates before school started so at least they would know someone there on their first day.

Since then, whenever I have asked who she sat next to or who she played with in school its always been J and "no-one else". Today, however, she came home from school and said J didn't want to be her friend anymore because J wanted to be friends with the 'girl with orange hair' (she didn't know her name) and the 'girl with the orange hair' didn't like her sad. When I asked her how she knew the gwtoh didn't like her she just said she gives her 'bad looks'.

When I asked her if there was anyone else in the class she could play with she just said "No - I don't know anyone else" sad. I feel really gutted for her as she really is a very sweet little girl & I'm now worrying that she won't have any friends at school as all of the other girls will have already formed their own little 'cliques'. Do 4 year olds do this?

DD1 really is quite a happy, fun, gregarious child once she's had time to settle into something & she did have a lot of friends in nursery but if she's a little unsure of herself or in a new situation she can withdraw into herself which may be hampering her ability to make new friends.

I realise I might be over-reacting a bit here (after all, she's only been there 2.5 weeks) but I guess I'm a bit paranoid about this as I know I find it extremely difficult to make friends myself (being quite shy) & I would hate for her to end up with no friends like me sad.

Am I being too sensitive here? Is it normal for a 4yo in her 3rd week of school not to have made any friends yet? How can I encourage her to try & make friends with some other girls in her class (like I said, having no friends myself I'm not really the best teacher when it comes to this sort of thing sad)?

MCos Wed 21-Sep-11 22:54:38

I had almost exactly the same with DD1. I could have written your first 4 paragraphs when DD1 started school. Down to the details about 'J'..
Sometime before Christmas hols, DD1 had made one friend. But that friend was popular with many others seeking her out to play with, so not always available to play with DD1. But by the end of the year, she had maybe 2-3 friends, and 4 years later has 4 good friends and is friendly with all of her class.

From stories of other friends I think it is a normal enough situation for the first year at school, especially for 1st borns who don't already have friends in the class. But it usually sorts itself out.

Once she makes some friends, I find playdates are a good way to help the friendships along.

Also, you could role play with her on how to join in with the others. Give her a few sentences she could use. 'Your game looks fun, can I play too', etc.. (Some little madams will respond NO - so help her with answer to that too)

YANBU to feel sensitive. This is a problem that really tugs at the heart strings. But I'm sure she will be fine, and just needs to find her feet. But it could take a month or two.

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