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Do you think I need to be proper friends with other moms for ds to have a social life

(14 Posts)
rayban Sat 29-Aug-09 12:48:38

I have suffered from shyness all of my life and as a result I have never really made any real friends as such.
Other parents at the school are just people I sometimes maybe say hello to or have a little bit of conversation with at times.I only really ever talk to the odd one or two its not how I want things to be but the idea of making conversation fills me with dread.
My ds is an only and he is 8 years old he rarely ever gets invited on any playdates or invited on any days out during the holidays or after school.
I have tried to encourage friendships by inviting the odd freind over from school and also during the holidays but I do find the whole process difficult.
Ds did start at a new school last September and although that is quite some time now I still have only really spoken to a handful of people I know that my wretched shyness is doing this.
It was the same at his last school for me I only ever spoke to a small handful of people and I have sort of kept ds in touch with some of his old freinds.
Its always me that does any inviting and nobody ever invites ds for a playdate and nobody ever gets in touch with us during holdiays etc its always me that gets in touch with others to ask if their children want to come and play with ds.
I have started to worry of late that the reson for the lack of contact from people and lack of invites for ds are due to these people only been people I see at the school ates.
Do you think a child only gets a good social life and gets invited places if their parents are outgoing and have plenty of real proper mates at the school gate.
I just feel so bad that my shyness could be the cause of this.

lost4words Sat 29-Aug-09 13:12:51

I'm in a similar position to you with this, so I'll be interested in any replies that come back. I make a token effort now and then, but not very much of one!

I spoke to a friend of mine about this. She has 2 teenagers and an 8yo. When the teenagers were at primary school, she was working fulltime and never invited anyone back to her house ever. As soon as the older ones were at high school they sorted out their own social life. I'm kind of hoping that the same will be the case for my DD.

rayban Sat 29-Aug-09 13:34:16

Thanks lost
I feel worse about it because ds is an only.
Is your dd an only.

Katisha Sat 29-Aug-09 13:42:13

I live some way from the school and don't tend to do organised invitations to come and play. But the DSs do have some friends in the village who they play with on an ad hoc bases pretty much all the time out on their bikes, in someone's garden etc.
Are there other children near you? Could DS maybe go and call for theminformally once you have initiated it?

Katisha Sat 29-Aug-09 13:43:59

ad hoc basis I mean

deaddei Sat 29-Aug-09 13:44:55

I think you both have to make more of an effort.
Ask dcs if they have a particular friend at school they'd like to have for tea- maybe they share a particular interest/hobby/sport. Chat to the mother- invite over. If it goes well, when the mother collects at 6, arrange a date for yours to go over.
It isn't hard- you're not expected to suddenly talk to every mother in the class- just one or two.
Let the children play- you don't have to get involved. (there's a long thread on chat at the moment)
My ds moved schools yr 4 and I had to do this (having been through once already)- but it really is worth it and pays dividends when they are older.
Rayban- I get the impression you wish you weren't as shy and you don't want your ds to be like that. Does your ds get upset that he doesn't have many people to play with?

rayban Sat 29-Aug-09 13:55:32

He doesn,t have anyone to play with in the street Katisha he did have but they all fell out and now nobody calls for him and he won,t call for them.
I am at a loss and my dh keeps saying I am worrying about nothing as ds is happy enough.
I do take on board what you say deaddei but I have had real problems working out who ds actually wants from school, he actually can get quite grumpy when I ask if there is anyone he wwants to invite he is extremely selective and will drop someone just like that if they do soemthing he doesn,t like.
Maybe this is part of the problem.
Yes your right I hate being shy and I don,t want ds to be like me.
As I said my ds doesn,t seem bothered and I think I make things worse by pushing him so am thinking that I should let him find his own way.
I still can,t help but feel bad though.

juuule Sat 29-Aug-09 14:02:31

If your ds isn't bothered then I agree with you that he will just find his own way and the time may come when he will be pushing you out of your comfort zone

Does he go to any clubs? Does he want to? If he does, then you could arrange that so that he meets other people to those at school or on the street.

If he's really not bothered at this point then I'd just let things go as they are for now.

And no I don't think you need to be proper friends with the other mums at school for him to have a socal life.

deaddei Sat 29-Aug-09 14:05:48

Does the school do any clubs after school he may be interested in doing? What is he interested in? If it's sport, mybe a weekend football/rugby club?
I have a friend with 1 (only)ds, and he never wanted to take part in anything/have friends round, as his dad did loads of stuff with him at weekends/holidays. He gradually stopped being so proactive (the dad) and the boy got sick of being left to his own devices so wanted friends round to play with.

potoftea Sat 29-Aug-09 14:16:07

I think you are worrying too much. He's only 8 and he's happy. He doesn't need a huge circle of friends at this stage, or maybe ever, it's what suits him that counts.

I became friends with one mother through our dc, but for the rest it was just a quick hello as we made arrangements for the dc to meet.

In a short few years he will make his friends totally independantly of you, and it won't matter if you know the other parents or not.

I do know how easy it is to let your own shyness/inadequacy in social situations affect how you judge your dc's friendships. I used get a sinking feeling if my dc wasn't asked to a playdate or party, because I felt "oh God, she/he isn't popular,", I think because I wasn't one of the popular ones in school. But my dc never felt that way, it was only my insecurities.

lost4words Sat 29-Aug-09 15:21:50

rayban yes, my DD is an only, also 8yo. She seems quite happy with the way things are. I often think it's me sticking my oar in that causes more tension. I find the mothers at the school gate are very clique-y where I live (I've been reading the current chat thread with interest!) and had enough of not being "popular" when I was at school myself!

DD goes to a dance club once a week - are there any clubs that your DS would be interested in going to? That might be a way of him mixing with people?

nickschick Sat 29-Aug-09 15:26:59

I have 3 ds and have always taken an active part in the older 2s school/social life as a nursery nurse in the school I knew many of the parents and children and my dc did have rather an active social life however it wasnt one they themselves would have chose it was just par for the course that my ds would be invited to the party and my ds would go for tea in fact most nights our dc were out or had friends round.

With ds3 being H.E hes just made his friends as he goes and ive ended up friends with some of the mums not all- but thats just proof for you that kids do find their own places with or without your help.

piscesmoon Sat 29-Aug-09 15:51:45

I should relax, if he is a shy DC there is nothing worse than a parent pushing him to do something (I expect you know this).
You do not need to be friends with the other parents-my main point about playdates on the other thread is that the DC gets to choose their own friends-not those pushed on them by the parent.
I would have fun with DS yourself. If he wants to join something (I would recommend cubs)support him but don't make him feel he ought to.The same with school friends-don't keep asking him ,but let him know that he only has to ask and you will invite them round.
People do things in their own time-as they gain confidence. Have you thought of joining something yourself?

gramber Fri 11-Sep-09 19:36:27

I have been in exactly the same situation as you - I think it does put some limits on their friendships, because it seems that parents get more involved socially than I ever remember as a child. I have got to the stage where parents have stopped inviting me to out of school things, because I always make excuses not too go. It makes me feel awful when I hear from my children that all their friends got together at a BBQ at the weekend. One of my dds is very shy, and I feel guilty about this as it has had such a debilitating effect on my life - I don't want her to be like me. Having said that they both have lots of friends who come to play and who they are invited to play with. Have you considered CBT? I started this several weeks ago, and although it can be a painful process, I feel I'm making some progress. Remember you're not the only one who feels this way - although it often feels that way!

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