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Parenting

lack of ability to mix socially

4 replies

micro · 04/05/2003 20:51

Greetings everyone, I've lurked for a bit but decided to join cos you all seem so sensible and intelligent :-). I wondered if anyone could give me some advice, or at least tell me it's just a phase... My son (aged 8) seems to struggle when it comes to mixing in groups of children his age. I've just spent a frustrating afternoon at a swimming party with kids from his class where instead of leaping in and joining in the fun, he just lurks round the edge and ended up swimming by himself the whole time. He says he doesn't know how to join in. He's fine if someone comes round to play but doesn't seem to have any particular friends at school. Anyone experienced this?

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Jimjams · 04/05/2003 21:36

Awww he sounds a sweety. Does he see it as a problem? If he doesn't I wouldn't worry too much. If he does maybe invite some other kids from his class home one at a time so he gets to know them better.

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tamum · 04/05/2003 22:52

I agree with jimjams, he does sound a sweetie. I feel like I want to give him a cuddle! My ds, also 8, was very much like this, and still is a bit. He has come on leaps and bounds, though, so maybe it is just a phase for your ds too? It sounds to me as though the key thing might be finding an activity that he feels confident at and where he feels he has something to offer; not all kids, even boys, necessarily find it comes naturally to leap about. Is there anything he really enjoys that you could adapt to a social situation? Even invite a friend round to play on the computer or something? Some kind of joint music class? (taking wild stabs in the dark here, as you'll have guessed!) Good luck, anyway, and keep us posted!

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micro · 05/05/2003 17:02

Thanks for the input! He is a sweety (but then I would say so...!) He's an only child and quite used to adult conversation (well, me, anyway) and has a strange imagination. I've always tried to ensure he has plenty of chance to mix but most of the friends I made at toddlers etc just happened to have girls, and they seem to have got to the age when boys play with boys, etc. I'm doubly frustrated 'cos I did talk to another mother who said her son was similar and we got them together and they were fine, but she seems a little reluctant to continue meeting after school - she's pushing his sports activities at present. (!). Still, ds is just moving up to cubs from beavers which seems promising. I just wanted someone to tell me it's just a phase... I don't think it worries him a great deal. In the playground he goes through periods of fitting in well with other boys and then suddenly being alone again. Unfortunately, he's not crazy about throwing balls about or playing football...the class is well oversize (36), so you'd think there would be someone with similar interests! I probably worry too much. He's shy in a strange way - quite happy to stand up in front of the class and do show and tell or whatever it's called. I remember being very shy as a child and it's not something I wish on him. Doesn't help that he's the smallest too...

Right, I'll stop moaning now. Just one of those times where everying I try to do in life meets some frustration or other!

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tamum · 05/05/2003 18:00

Hello, micro! The more you say about your ds the more it doesn't really sound like a problem, just something that will improve with time, or just not matter with time as his friends all grow up too. He does sound VERY like my ds, also very happy with show and tell but not interested in football. Is there a drama club he might like to join, perhaps? Cubs sounds good though. I'm sure it's nothing to worry about. If you lived near me I'd say bring him round to play with my ds, I'm sure they'd get on well!

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