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15 year old DD cries from extreme loneliness(22 Posts)
My daughter is 15, and currently in 5th year of high school in Scotland. She fell out with her best friend who then took over the group and left my daughter all alone in august 2017. They have confronted her a couple of times which always resulted with coming home from school early in tears. Since then my daughter hasn’t made any friends except from a couple fleeting online friendships. She has no one to sit at lunch with nor to hang out with during weekends. She has been coping well over the past year but she has been having trouble lately. She cries a lot and is longing for a friend. The case is complicated as we are immigrants and as we moved she did not talk for two years. It was only those girls that took care of her to later leave her like that. Others still see my daughter as the strange girl who does not talk and she does not know what to do. She joined a book group but that is only once a month. We are very close and she tells me about everything. I can see that its killing her and i dont know how to help her. Please give me some advice...
I am so sorry for your daughter. Have you tried talking to school? does she do any activities outside of school?
Have you spoke to the school? The best bet would be going to them and seeing what they suggest. They may know of other clubs she would enjoy or even other children in a similar position. You could also possibly ask them about outside agencies and if there is anyone they think may help. One to consider may be social services, it may seem extreme but where we are is a children and young people's team who both my children see for different reasons but they help with building confidence and stuff which may help her.
My daughter went through this in year 10 although for some different reasons (all friends in other sets for GCSEs) and from various fallings out. I spent a lot of time just reassuring her and making home life as nice and comforting as possible, and trying to encourage her to join things and do some volunteering - she helped out at a kids club and all the little kids really loved her - which just boosted self-esteem a bit. She’s now in sixth form and although will never be the most sociable of people, is at least a bit more confident and knows her own mind. Is your daughter an only child?
Don’t secondary schools have a support worker for the students? It may be worth talking to them.
I think the key is to try to do lots of activities on a regular basis to widen her social group.
Could she do some voluntary work which could increase her some self confidence?
Try every kind of out is school club possible!
My daughter was the same and we moved her for sixth form and she’s honestly one of the most popular girls at the new school. Can you move her for next year?
In the mean time different activity groups? Skating, horse riding, anything you can find where she can meet people.
I’m sorry, I remember it was awful and I was worried sick. Just keep reminding her that it won’t always be like this but that school can be awful. Dd can barely remember how upset she was by it which is bizarre!
Can she try a new sport or club - it's heartbreaking for her to be lonely at school but if she has some other interests she may feel happier?
I was your daughter. 30 now, and whilst not everything has gone to plan, I am happy and confident in myself.
Just keep reassuring her. I remember how horribly painful it felt at the time. Keep reassuring her that it isn’t her (because it isn’t) and that things will get better (because they really will), but please - let her cry and be hurt. There’s a time to be strong and that’s when she’s around those people, let home be a safe haven.
I didn’t have that safe haven (it was well intentioned) and it made everything so much harder.
My heart breaks for your daughter and you. My DD is 16 and has Asperger’s. She goes to a mainstream grammar and was rejected by her peers for a good few years. I remember telling her that the world is so small at that age and that those groups of girls that seemed so happy and friendly were fraught with insecurities and infighting etc. I made sure to reinforce what a great person she was (is!) and that she would absolutely meet like minded people and have friends. She does have friends now but it did take a few years. Your daughter will get through this, and there are nice kids out there. Does the school have prefects who could invite her for lunch and breaks and is there a school counsellor? Sometimes talking to a therapist can be great for our kids who are feeling lonely. It helps them realise that they are valued and important. Can you speak to the school and check if they have any friendship clubs or if they can engineer a meeting with nicer, more mature girls? You tell her this will not break her and she will come out the other side. She will meet friends, I promise!
She will find her people in time. Give her the gift of things to do that don't involve lots of other people?
Can she move tutor group? This always seems to help
Having a best friend is never a good idea and should be discouraged! For this very reason
Ask your DD what she thinks she should do? She must mix with plenty of other girls
It's so awful. Can you change school's? Her mental health is not something to be ignored and doing another two years somewhere that makes you so miserable you cry isn't good for anyone.
Thanks for the responses,
She has signed up for a breakthrough programme where she will be assigned a mentor to talk to an hour a week. The school is fully aware, including the head teacher. After the first act of bullying last year she was made to apologise to the girls so we figured school was not much help. Although last month her maths’ teacher decided to help and is trying to convince her to maybe try and talk to others. She is afraid as she has been in school with all these kids for over 4 years now and everyone is in their friendship groups seeing here as the outsider although she really is a talkative girl. We thought about moving schools but its fifth year and she will be sitting her highers this year and doesnt want to change teachers. She is not very confident but we will try to find some clubs or something, as she is into art. Once again thanks for the advice.
A few of my peers left the school we went to, for another at AS Level and got on just fine. Better than fine. I know your daughter is a little younger but being new doesn’t mean being lonely.
Nicoandtheniners, it is a Scottish school, so no moving for sixth form in the same way in our system, it does happen, but very rarely and would be hard for a child lacking in confidence and can be difficult due to the way our exams are timed
I was her... Oddly enough hanging out with a younger crowd helped. (As suggested above). I found friends eventually
I second the advice to get her mixing in groups outside of school.
She's into art - would she be interested in a portfolio course? Lots of teens who are nearly or have finished school, something she is good at with others who are a few years older could broaden her horizons. It won't stop school being horrible but something like that would give her perspective that it's not for ever and brighter things await
Cross post seanna, I advocated for slightly older!
I suppose the point is, get her away from this horrible group of peers and show her how big the net of friendships can be.
It would be very hard for her to move schools now as its only a few months until the Higher Prelims . If she was going to move it would have been better done at the end of May after her Nat 5s.
You need to push to school to help her more. Can she volunteer in the school to be a mentor to younger pupils, especially those who are also immigrants ?
She can help the teachers who run lunchtime clubs for the 1st and 2nd years . This will keep her away from the dinner hall at lunchtime, she can take or buy a sandwich and eat it at the club.
Have you met with her pupil support / guidance teacher ?
Find her a volunteering opportunity at the weekends. There’s also things like art and drama clubs Outside of school .
Are there other people from your home country who have settled here ? So they have social or comunity or religious groups that she could join ?
She really needs to have a good social life outside school, that will help her through this school year. And start thinking about her moving to a new school in 2019 - again she needs to move in late May.
Sorry to hear that it’s tough for your DD. If she was in England I’d say move at sixth form, to a college not another school where friendships are established. There must be some point in the Scottish system where this can be done, surely? There’s always movement in schools here!
My DD struggled with friendships too, never bullied really but just a bit quirky and reticent. It is much better for her now in sixth form. She has stayed put which wasn’t her original intention but she decided to stay in the end and has already strengthened friendships this year and has some out of school friends from NCS in the summer.
She did some out of school activities but never really made lasting friendships through them although had friends at the group that never translated to going out afterwards etc.
She will never be the most social person as she likes her downtime but she says to me she has enough friends and is happy now.
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