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DD giving herself a hard time for being shy (sorry long)

(9 Posts)
SteamWisher Fri 01-Nov-13 13:48:58

Oh I wouldn't be harsher, just accept what she says and leave it at that iyswim? She might actually try if left to it without the pressure?

Notsoyummymummy1 Fri 01-Nov-13 13:01:09

Sounds like you are doing a wonderful job and she's only little still so she will master things in her own time. It's hard for you to see her getting upset over it though. You might find this article helpful for tips:

plipplops Fri 01-Nov-13 08:09:47

At the disco she would describe herself as scared, I asked "What are you scared of? What do you think is going to happen?" Think I read in the "How to Talk so Your Kids Will Listen..." book to put a name to their feelings (to validate them iyswim), so yes I might say she was scared or shy, but just in a factual way not a negative way? With the ketchup she knew she'd have to ask for it so I think it was the idea of speaking to a stranger. If she just said "I really don't want to go I'm scared to speak to him" I wouldn't mind and I'd just go, it's the way she winds herself up crying and saying "I really want to go and ask/dance but I can't as I'm too scared" that is so difficult.

When she was too scared to get her lumps off with tweezers and was saying she couldn't, I tried to explain that she could it's just she was choosing not to, and that it was fine to say she didn't want to do it, or just choose to do it, but not say that she couldn't because there was nothing actually stopping her. Oh lord does that make sense? I wonder if it's time to be a bit harsher on the moaning but I don't want to knock her confidence further...

SteamWisher Thu 31-Oct-13 20:47:00

When I say do you describe her, I mean do you say in front of her "oh she's just a bit scared/shy?"

SteamWisher Thu 31-Oct-13 20:44:04

How do you react - do you describe her as being scared or shy?
If she wanted the ketchup, I would have told her (nicely) to go and get it. Same with dancing - tell her to go and dance. If she doesn't, then say no more and leave it at that.

plipplops Thu 31-Oct-13 20:27:06


plipplops Thu 31-Oct-13 08:41:27

Thanks. We try to let her do everything she can for herself (although maybe not to the extent you mean), so some days she'll want to make her own food etc and I let her, and tell her how great she is and how much we love her all the time as I want to build her up. Sometimes it backfires as she can't decide (so I might suggest to wear something warm as it's a cold day, and as she can't decide what she'll get in a flap). She's generally terrible at making decisions, which is hard as I don't want to decide everything for her but I don't want her to wind herself up eithersad.

Will look up mantle of the expert though, sounds interesting. It's really odd as sometimes (when she's totally in her comfort zone) she can be super bossy confident, like when she'd taken something in for Show & Tell at school and her teacher said she'd basically told everyone to sit down and listen so she could tell them all about it!

notadoctor Thu 31-Oct-13 07:07:06

Poor little thing! I don't have much experience or advice for this I'm afraid but didn't want to read without replying... Are there things that she's particularly good at that she can spend time at in order to build her confidence? With younger children there's a technique called 'mantle of the expert' (I teach performance to kids and use it for that) which is about you the adult acting as though you don't have the answers so that the kid is empowered to step up and take action - might be worth looking into. It sounds like she has a lovely supportive Mum!

plipplops Wed 30-Oct-13 22:04:36

DD1 is 6. She can be really shy and scared of things and it's starting to really get her down and I don't know how to help. I'll give a few examples which I hope will explain;

1. And the school disco (which she had been really looking forward to), she spent the first 45 minutes really upset saying "I really really want to dance but I'm too scared" I offered to dance/join in with her but she said she was still too scared.

2. At a soft play with a cafe. DDs had lunch and wanted ketchup. I asked her if she wanted to go and ask for it. She got herself all worked up saying "I really want to go and ask but I'm too scared" I offered to go with her but she said she still wouldn't be able to ask. DD2 (who's 4) got up and went to ask, DD1 then cried more saying if she was brave enough to go now she can't as DD2 will have already got the ketchup (so she knew she'd missed her chance ifkwim).

3. She's got that molluscum contagiousum on her legs (lots of threads on here, little sore lumps that go away eventually on their own, but much quicker if you squeeze them or pull them off with tweezers (I know, gross). Some of hers were ready to be pulled off, but she was too scared to either do it herself or let us. Cue more crying and "I really want to pull them off because I want them to go away but I ca't because I'm too scared"

I really try and be sympathetic without pandering to her too much. I want to acknowledge her feelings, whilst making her see that there's nothing to worry about. At the disco and soft play I gently asked what she thinks might happen (i.e. why she won't go and do whatever it is she's scared of) and she never has an answer. I don't have a problem with her being shy (she used to be much worse and is definitely improving), but it breaks my heart the way she beats herself up about everything. If she just said she didn't want to go to the disco (or ask for ketchup, or whatever) that would be absolutely fine but I don't want to assume she can't do anything for her, it needs to be her choice.

She also gets in a bit of a flap sometimes if she can't see me, for instance we were in a swimming pool changing room yesterday (the only people there so it was nice and calm), I had to pop out the door to get something and probably mumbled where I was going but didn;t explicitly tell her. I was gone for maybe 30 seconds and she was upset saying "Mummy you really frightened me I thought you'd left us". I have no idea where this has come from I've never left her anywhere did leave DD2 in the school playground once and went home but that's a different matter, and she seems fine.

Sorry I've rambled, would love to hear any thoughts...

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