13 year old with no friends.(7 Posts)
I have a 13 year old (almost 14 year old) with no friends. I have just taken out his school diary to order a book on Amazon, and noticed that he had written on his birthday date "Happy birthday. You have no friends, but happy birthday". So sad for him.
He has always been quiet and shy. He s very sporty, but has a knee injury which has kept him out of sport for some time. I saw his teachers this week (he is first in the class at a very selective school) and they agreed that he was very quiet but said that they felt he was very mature compared to the others and that they felt he would find his place. He doesn't seem unhappy and we do a lot together as a family...but I think he keeps it all tucked away and it makes me worried.
Sorry bit of an essay. He doesn't ever want me to talk to him about this. He resists inviting people and is never invited. Things were better in primary but only because I was actively engaged and invited all the time. Much more difficult to micro manage now. Has anyone got any pointers for me?
I didn't want to read and run, but have no real advice to offer, just know he is not the only teenager who feels like this. If he doesn't seem unhappy, he might not be! Give him time and opportunity to talk to you,keep doing lots as a family and try not to worry too much!
Do you have friends with DC the same age? I think this is always crucial. My DS is the same age - 14 in less than a month. We are currently abroad and I have no friends here with kids his age so it is only when I go home or speak to my friends at home that I realise my DS is "normal for his age". It's so different at secondary, better in some ways, but also you can't get involved and left to their own devices, most teens today seem to be happy at home
in their room.
My DS has friends at school allegedly but never sees anyone outside. This worries me but then it's the same for my DDs so I put it down to a cultural divide. And fact that they spend so long at school here! But it can also be their generation. Does he have an Xbox and play games on-line? This seems to be the thing nowadays. Even my friends in UK with DC same age say they mostly "speak" to friends on face time/Skype or via games. My DS still regularly emails his best friend back home (usually about football).
Sorry for incoherent ramble but your post hit a chord. If he seems happy then that is all that matters. Having a lovely family you enjoy spending time with is priceless imo. I didn't/don't have that so my friends were/are my life and I suppose I find it harder to comprehend that my kids/our generation of kids might not need that.
I think at this kind of age the whole banter jokey being quite piss taking seems to hold sway with quite a few boys. I hear my DS and his friends being quite horrid to each other and worry about it. They are all boys in top set for every subject and all very competitive.
I saw some boys from the local private school being positively repulsive towards each other in the local chip shop. Observing these other boys from another school just confirmed the whole being an attention seeking arsehole to try and be popular to me.
Is he at a single sex school? Because I think for quieter boys it's the hardest environment for them.
If he is missing sport could he possibly have a go at archery? My friends DS did this and loved it.
One hobby my DS has is Xbox and he plays online with his friends and it gives them a common interest, that can also bring its own issues obviously. There are play-stations as well so if gaming was tempting it would be a good opener to ask what systems people play on and games they like.
From what I see it's definitely the quieter/shy ones that struggle making friends, getting invited to parties, etc. I see it with my two as DS (the younger one) is the outgoing, bantery, sociable child who has loads of friends and DD (the older one) is much quieter, more reserved and has fewer friends and less invites. They are both at secondary and yes, it was much easier as primary when the parents did the social life as I made sure DD didn't lose out socially as much as possible!! It's a bit better for DD now as she seems to have made a few more friends recently, but it's still early days in this group so who knows... She is same age as your son and I'm hoping that things will improve in the next coupel of years. She has a couple of very good friends, which helps, but she def would like more, although she's not bothered about being seen as 'cool', unlike some in her year. It doesn't work to harrass her about arrangements so saying 'Why don't you invite X round' is not a solution. Is there any youth club he could join? When I was 14 I was fed up with school socially and joined a youth club where I made most of the friends I still have today, 30 years later! I then realised what a proper teen social life was. It took about a year to get 'fully' integrated into it and meet friends of friends, etc., get party invites, but it was worth the wait.
Honestly, your replies have meant so much to me this evening (hard day, and I thought about him a lot). Ancienchateau it sounds like we live in the same country, and it doesn't help at all... even though ds was born here, he feels different from the others. We do have best friends and our kids are best friends, but we live in different countries and meet up once a year to go on holiday. I think ds wants and expects relationships to be like these old friendships, but of course they can't.
Peeved he has just bought himself a Ps4. Can you play that online? So ignorant about such matters.
Justdance no youth club, but even if there was he wouldn't go as he doesn't know anyone. But sport will be better as it is activity based and there is a purpose. He is very bad at purposeless things (anything sociable will qualify for this in his book).
Anyway I feel less worried now, so thank you again. I do remember vividly how rotten these years were myself, and how it all came together very quickly at about the age of 16, so maybe time will sort it out for all of us?
That explains a lot pinkhousesarebest, if we live in the same country! Despite being fluent in the language DS often complains he has nothing in common with most of his peers here. He's also really sporty and finds the attitude to it by other boys quite strange. We've moved to a city and my DC are now in sections internationales which has improved things. Is that something you can consider?
Pleased you are less worried. It really does help to talk to parents of same age DC. Something which is often quite hard to do here sadly. I'd encourage an online friendship with his best friend abroad. The internet's been a lifesaver since we've moved here enabling my older DC to keep up with their best friends back home. Pretty sure you can online game with a PS as well as Xbox.
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