Mini loves to write, to draw, to make his mark, so we enable him to do so and he has many a notebook or pad and I was putting one of them away one evening when I discovered a note that made my heart lurch.
Nobody likes me.
Now you might know that we have had ongoing issues with Mini about going to school since Preschool. He doesn’t like school. He doesnt want to go and we have been trying to get to the bottom of this for a long, long time and finding something like this in your five year old’s notebook, I can tell you is crushing.
I know that we can not always be happy all the time, but at five you should be happy most of the time and you should not be made to feel as though no body likes you. Initially when I tried to approach him about it, he just ripped the note up and started to cry. He explained that none of the boys in his class liked hm, but I was at a loss as how to handle it and make him feel better.
But thanks to my lovely online friends I was provided with practical advise that I could put in place and start to work on reframing the “nobody” part of the note. The wonderful Dawn aka The Moider had some excellent advise “Does nobody really like him, nobody at school? No cousins or kids of your friends. Help him focus in the people that do and those moments he enjoys. The things he does on his own or with his brother or you that are fun. It will help show him that the people who don’t like him are a very small part of a big picture. It’s worth a try. There is no point disagreeing with him and telling him he’s wrong because it’s his belief. Help him reframe that belief to see the positives”.
The issue is still there, but we are working hard on making changes. It doesn’t stop my heart from breaking when I think about it though.
I felt the exact same lurch in my tummy when I saw the picture of Mini’s note. We’re not at the school stage yet, but it’s what most terrifies me about having children. Sending them out to make their own way, and how you manage to make sure they’re happy. I’m glad you’ve been offered some good advice. All I can say is that the loving and supportive home you provide for Mini will set him up to make long and lasting friendships and relationships, so don’t do yourself down. x
It is heart breaking, went through something similar with my daughter when she was about 7. Note to Father Christmas had me and still brings tears to my eyes when I think about it; dear Santa I tried to be a good girl this year and would like to have some friends please.
Just let him know he is loved and be there for him. The daughter is now 21 has a nice BF but still has no friends but she is happy.
We have had similar issues. I’ve been trying to tease out the ‘nobody’ thing, and getting them to admit to when they’ve played with someone and building on that. I talk to them about ways of engaging other children in the playground (talking about toys they both like, films they’ve seen, that sort of thing) and I’ve tried to be better about inviting other children over for tea, as I think it can often help to spend time one to one and therefore build a rapport that can be hard in a classroom.
I’m glad my comments helped and that you are starting to see changes. Unfortunately these things take a lot more time to work around than they do to take hold in the first place.
However, if you keep to the principles of constantly putting everything in perspective for him – you will give him the skills and resilience to work his way through this stuff in the future and that will be an amazing gift that you can give him. Imagine if we had learnt as kids how to get that sense of perspective on things, how much easier some of the challenges we faced would have been. That combined with what you already do which is showing him that you love him unconditionally will make him a very chilled out little boy indeed.
That is excellent advice from Dawn and the important thing is you’re working on it. Letting them go into situations that are out of your control is one of the hardest things to do as a parent. You have firm foundations at home to build on. Thinking of you, as always x
I also think Dawn has given you the best advice Jen. I can so relate to what you write, we have similar issues with Milo and as a parent is truly does break your heart. Our two other sons have had no problems forming friendships and indeed being surrounded by friends but Milo is very different. Like Mini he is a sensitive little boy, a deep thinker and understands things at a much higher level than is normal for his age.
I know you and Drew provide a wonderful, loving home for your boys and with your care and support he will come through this as I know Milo will xxx
Always here for you.
I was bullied at school, quite badly. It was very very hard but it has made me a more stronger outgoing person I think. The amount of times that my poor parents felt absolutely helpless. I won’t go into detail about my experience on here but if you need to chat then let me know.
The poor little fella. (((hugs)))
Ohh the poor thing that is heartbreaking. I think you’ve been given some fab advice, i hope it gets better and better xx
That advice is so clever, I’m not sure how I’d have tackled that issue but the way you are going about it seems so sensible. And learning to apply this same logic will help with all sorts of problems. Good luck, and a big hug for mini. Juliex
It’s such a tough one and it is the first time I think we realise that we can’t sort everything out for them, we can’t just kiss it better. They do have to find their way in the world and when you are a sensitive soul it can be really hard. I do think listing all the people who do like him is a good idea, also asking one or two of those people to say what they like best about him can help (a bit of self esteem building). We had similar friendship issues with DS2 at his first school, luckily he had a very understanding teacher who put things into place at playtime to help him (he was the only boy who didn’t play football so she introduced days when other tempting equipment was out – not just for him obviously – to help encourage the others to play stuff other than football and enabled him to be more involved), I also loaned her a copy of a book I have
and she used various activities in her classroom.
I think your gentle, caring approach will reap rewards Jen. When you have a child who feels so deeply they hurt deeply and it is hard to watch but they make lovely people.
My heart knows exactly how yours feels. It is so hard but concentrating on the good stuff does help.
As Chris says when you have someone who thinks and feels things deeply they do also hurt deeply too. Having said that this are the ones who grow up to be adults that we need more of in this world. My daughter is one of those and to many of these kind of notes have been written.
Being the best Mum’s they can have, concentrate on the positives will make things that bit better. xxxx
This made my heart break too but Chris gives super advice. Focusing on the positives and asking the teachers to support him more will help him, I’m sure.
I know of two little children who like him a lot x x
Oh the poor wee chap. My heart goes out to both of you and I really hope that both Dawn’s and Chris’s excellent advice helps.
I think it’s terribly hard though – no matter how confident and happy the child, there is always going to come a moment when he or she realises that not everybody likes them. I am dreading that moment… and will be looking to you for advice when it comes.
Oh poor little fella its an awful thing to see and go through. We have been through this with Elyssia pretty much the same age. We tried to build her self esteem up every little thing/achievement we could celebrate we did. It is a very tough time I feel for all of you . I hope things start improving soon.
Gosh, it must be heartbreaking to have to deal with this sort of thing. He has a brother and parents that love him to the moon and back and I am sure that he will find his way. We are here to virtually hold you hand as he does.
As you are there for me with my problems x
Awww, sorry to hear it’s still on going for him and you all. Is there a particular child he speaks enthusiastically or fondly of — one friend or classmate he likes? If so, I would maybe seek out that child’s parents and arrange a meetup at the playground or your house. Hugs.
Poor fella. I think play dates might help build his relationships – he might just need some one-to-one time to gain confidence in his friendships.
You’d hope the school would be a bit helpful too, I know when Flea started school, her teacher called me in to say Flea often sat and watched play, rather than joining in, and they changed who she sat next to, and implemented things like a rota where the children in the class choose the playtime game, so Flea could have a chance at choosing the game (she didn’t often want to play what the other girls chose). Fortunately she was never upset that it took her a little longer to build friendships, but she’s certainly a child who takes her time to get to know people. Some kids are just a bit more cautious, maybe.
How sad! I dread this sort of thing. We had some talk about downgrading and upgrading of friendships the other day (my son is in reception class). I found it a bit hurtful and sad so I expect he did too. The advice seems good – will remember it in case I need it.
poor guy! it breaks your heart but everyone has given such good advice. He’ll make friends (or as others said has friends but is having selective memory). Sending hugs.
My heart broke reading that, having a 5 year old I would be distraught reading that. But, I know you are an amazing mum and you will do everything you can do help him and get to the bottom of it. It’s hard at 5 to make friends. I know my son just plays and runs about, I don’t think he’s made any friends as such. It is good advice from Dawn, there is so much happiness around him and he is no loved, I think he’s focussing on one thing. Please give him a hug from me and he always has friends here in Scotland xxx
Oh Jen, my 8YO told me this week she was ‘just sad’. Like you I thought kids should feel happy most of the time. I’m trying to make lots of time for happiness, but in all my 17years of parenting I’ve never felt as crushed as this week. Hugs to you and yours x
Oh gosh Jen that must have been so heartbreaking to see.
My eldest is also a sensitive little soul and went through a similar sad period in Reception, I have sweated tears about the repeated phrase “no one plays with me”. She started to find herself more and be able to join in spontaneously with others in year 1 and seems to be coming into her own more now in year 2. She’s a spring baby and i do think this has had an impact on her confidence in the early years of infant school.
I met your gorgeous little mini in the hotel last year at cybermummy and it was one of the highlights of my weekend-I remember him as splendid little fellow, brim full of intelligence and curiosity who made me laugh and feel happy in just those few minutes of meeting him (and his lovely mum of course). My heart goes out to you and him but I’m sure with your family’s continued love and encouragement and the support of his teacher he’ll come through the other side unscathed xxxx
Gosh how horrid for all of you. It does sound like you have been given some very good advice though. I do hope he feels a bit better soon.
Your CommentsIf you are shy yourself it is particularily painful when your child is having difficulties with friends.
Also school is meant to be about seeing your friends so it makes a mockery of it all when they say they have no friends, especially when you are making such an effort to get him to off to school every day..
On the other hand he is little, and maybe one day it feels like the end of the world and no-one likes him, and the next day he is feeling all enthusiastic and happy again – I think we all feel a bit like that and he needs to be allowed to express low points as well as high, without it being a label he carries around with him at all times. In some ways we write things or say things like that to get reassurance from those around us.
But, I think it is very important to talk to his teacher and find out what is happening, nevertheless, rather than just assume he will grow out of it.
I personally think you have to start with the idea of him Liking Himself and Valuing himself, rather than worrying what anyone else thinks of him. And of course liking other people too, and ways to show them your appreciation.
I have an ASD child of 9/10 and I think one of things that has come up is that way he will say, such and such won’t play with me, and I have to explain to him that he needs to do x to try and signal to potential friend his appreciation rather than just expecting other people to like him automatically. He is soo soo lovable, and he know we love him and I think he finds it difficult to remember he has to work at earning other people’s affection and friendship, because it comes so naturally to get it from us. But that of course is an older child with different difficulties.