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DD11 struggling with friends possibly due to alternate weekends??

12 replies

Notexactlymarthastewart · 07/09/2014 21:36

Any tips please??

Separated from DD11 (and DS7)'s dad, so the kids spend alternate weekends a few miles away.

DS has 3/4 friends so not so noticeable and they play in different combinations, but DD struggling with one main friend she has and doesn't see anyone at weekends "at home" with me. Hormones have kicked in and she is moody, argumentative and downright rude to me which we have spoken about. Really want to help her but she often excludes herself in the playground by going and sitting on her own. Last year of primary school and I worry as she is quite "sheltered" and not into boys, music etc although does like makeup and shopping. Help please???

OP posts:
Heyho111 · 07/09/2014 23:40

Some girls aren't into the teenage stuff at that age. There are some books for parents on teen development it would be worth getting one. I've just read get out my life but first take me and Alex into town. It wil help you understand why they act and feel the way they do and then give you ways to react to them. I wish I had read it years ago.

Notexactlymarthastewart · 08/09/2014 09:01

Hi Heyho
Thanks, I will see if I can find that book. I'm not too worried that she isn't into boys etc as they all develop differently, but I think it may be contributing to her isolation too and I just want to support her in the best way possible.

Not being available to play every weekend might be a factor too, I'm not sure but I can understand that other girls don't want to be left without their best friend every second weekend either. It's tricky.

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bluebell8782 · 08/09/2014 13:47

Wondered if she was able to see her friend at her dads?

jeee · 08/09/2014 13:55

To be perfectly honest (and I'm not sure if it's what you want to hear), I don't think the every other weekend thing makes the blindest bit of difference. My DC rarely play with other children over the weekend, and it makes no difference to their friendships. Nor are they bothered that some friends are the other side of the country most weekends.

Your dd does sound as though she has friendship issues - have you spoken to the school?

Is she worried about secondary school? It sounds like she's in year 6, in which case she'll be thinking about secondary schools, which some children find really stressful. On a positive note, some children are so much happier and settled at secondary school - they have a chance to start afresh, without seven years of baggage and feuds.

Notexactlymarthastewart · 08/09/2014 22:37

No, dad's is too far away, 2 towns/villages apart.

In Scotland, so Primary 7 = year 6, high school next year.

She only sees friends at school, or Guides. I work full time so they go to after school care every day (only one boy from her year there and he's about to stop going soon) so we get home about 6:15 each night.

Our circumstances severely limit the time both DCs get to spend with friends from school. Weekends are her best opportunity to spend time with friends but that's not happening. DS fares better

Obviously other families have plans at weekends too, so it is difficult to match up free time with the few friends she ever asks about. Invariably, she ends up playing with kids 3-6 years younger than her, not ideal.

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wheresthelight · 12/09/2014 07:56

I am afraid o agree with previous poster that weekends are not your issue. playdates tend to be an after school occurrence ime so the issue would stem more from her going to after school club although indo appreciate there isn't a lot to be done about it.

if weekends are the only opportunity then could you arrange some playdates for her if you know the mum's? there is realistically a chance for her to go to friends houses I'm the week but it is the reciprocation that becomes the issue

Notexactlymarthastewart · 12/09/2014 19:53

Most of the mums I know work, and as you point out, I could never repay the favour because of my hours. Hence, only the weekends are an option, especially now as it is getting darker in the evenings again...

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wheresthelight · 12/09/2014 20:23

then I think you might have to just bite the bullet and arrange some weekend playdates for when she is with you.

my dss is 11 but still loves the big soft play places - could something like that be am option or maybe the cheap Saturday kids seats at the cinema?

Notexactlymarthastewart · 12/09/2014 22:12

As I said, it's really hard matching up with other families free time unfortunately

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wheresthelight · 12/09/2014 22:13

that's quite defeatist hun! have you tried? plans can be made several weeks in advance, maybe offer a sleepover to make life easier for the other family

you are dismissing suggestions so I am not sure what advice you want

Notexactlymarthastewart · 13/09/2014 07:59

Sorry wheresthelight, I'm not trying to dismiss suggestions, it's just that I have tried most of them already. Smile Sleepovers are no bother but it's finding someone available to come over in the first place. There's only about 25 in her class / one class per year and in such a small place, friendships are mapped out quickly. She's friendly but a bit shy and (over)sensitive sometimes.

Her best friend - one parent works away a lot so (totally understandably!) the weekends are their family time. I am friends with them too, so we do manage the occasional get together, but they have an enormous circle of friends themselves (they are lovely people) to cover.

Other mums use their own parents for after school care, so their DCs are in their own home and able to go out and play/ see friends. My parents are dead, and the other grandparents (both in 70's) can only manage one afternoon but again that is away from the village we live in. I use a childminder one afternoon, nursery three afternoons per week.

The kids don't want to move somewhere else (nor do I tbh) and I have a good job only 15 mins away.

She is a little nervous about high school - it will be a big change from 150 kids to several hundreds - but induction days start next week so I'm hoping that will help.

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wheresthelight · 13/09/2014 09:04

I do understand the complications involved but could you maybe arrange one day every couple of weeks where you could maybe finish earlier so you could take her and a friend to tea somewhere?

my dss really struggles with friendships and like your dd can be over sensitive. but encouraging him to join groups has been a big help.

you say she does Guides, are there any friends there that you could invite over? talk to the leaders as they will have heaps of advice (I am one so I know!)

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