How to help my son be confident, happy and make friends?

"My son recently told me that he wanted to leave scouts because he had no friends there and was being treated poorly by other kids. I had to really fight back openly weeping in front of him, I was devastated and am mentally drained. I just want my son to be confident and happy like any parent. I feel as though I have failed him as a parent. Your advice is helpful and i will try to move forward in a positive direction."

Asked by "TGS" after reviewing the article, "Nobody Likes Me: Helping Children Make Friends":
In Topics: Self esteem and identity, Parenting / Our Family, Friendships and peer relationships
> 60 days ago



Feb 10, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

I always advise to treat the cause, not the symptom.  Talk with your son.  Ask him about what are the other kids teasing him about?  
Is it his personality?  Is it his appearance?  Talk to him about school: does he have friends there?  How are his schoolmates treating him?
Also, have you noticed lately any changes in your son's mood?  Is he more sad than happy, keeps to himself, or experiences mood swings, or frequent crying spells?  Do you think that he might be depressed?  If so, he might benefit from seeing a counsellor.  Helping your son feel better about himself will make his social interactions easier.
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Additional Answers (1)

dgraab , Parent writes:

I'm sorry to hear that your son is currently having some difficulty with friendships in his boy scout troop. Have you talked to his troop leader about this concern? He may have some ideas for how to help your son with his troop relationships. also offers some resources you may find helpful to the situation...

Friendships info center:

Bullying and Teasing info center:

As a parent of a second grader, I can relate to the sadness you mentioned feeling about this. I too feel sad when my daughter comes home from school crying, saying that no one will be her friend. I comfort her, and when she's ready, we talk about what happened at school that led her to the conclusion that she doesn't have friends (such as she couldn't find anyone to play the game she wanted to play, or to play it the way she wanted). We talk about alternatives to the situation (such as playing a different game, taking turns playing the game according to different friends rules, or making new friends), and we recall positive friend experiences (to remind her that she does have friends, even if it didn't seem so that particular day at school).

Friendships (and relationships in general) can be tricky, and it doesn't mean you've failed as a parent if your child encounters some challenges in making friends. You sound like a very caring parent who will learn as much as you can to best support your son in his peer relationships. I wish you and your son well, and hope the resources above are helpful to you both.
> 60 days ago

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