11-27-2018 11:20 AM - last edited on 11-27-2018 11:57 AM by Jay-RO
My 15 year old daughter left school end of year 9 due to bullying. After months of struggle got her to complete her year 10 equivalent and she is finishing now a 6 months tafe course. Problem she is 15 years old and has no friends and is very lonely. She does enjoy art but only so much art to draw. I know there are so many parents and teens in this position and wish we could arrange for these kids to all meet so they can see they are not alone and maybe can connect. Any ideas?
11-27-2018 12:09 PM
@Hi there @Lonelychild and welcome to ReachOut.
Just a note: I edited your post to remove your location as we are an anonymous forum and it is against our guidelines to have personal information, such as location, to prevent users from being identified.
It's unfortunate that she left school because of bullying but it sounds like you are a supportive parent and it's great that you are there for her I think that community neighbourhood centres will sometimes run various types of groups that might be helpful for your daughter, are there any nearby?
I believe your idea of getting together with families who are in a similar situation is a fantastic idea. If you can't find anything in your local area, do you think you could organise one yourself? What do you think?
11-28-2018 06:55 AM - edited 11-28-2018 06:56 AM
It's heartbreaking to see our much-loved children alone and lonely, isn't it?
I, too, have a 15 year old daughter who changed schools this past year and who has had much difficulty maintaining friendships. Could you tell us a bit more about her social situation? Has she always had difficulty with friendships, or did something happen in the recent past to change the situation?
For example, my daughter has significant social anxiety and, lately, has been prone to impulsive behavior. Other girls are, understandably, wary of some of her behavior. And, the few friendships she has ride a fine line in that her anxiety leads her to feel that she is hated, or that her friends have tired of her, are avoiding her and so on. It has taken/is taking us quite a bit to piece together what has happened/is happening to her socially.
I also know that I can't forget the impact that trauma has left. I don't know what happened to your daughter in her previous school, but I imagine that is traumatic to be harassed/marginalized/made to feel invisible and so on. It takes a 'thick skin' and a good measure of self confidence to reach out and make friends. My lovely lovely daughter is convinced that she is unlovable, and sees the world through this lens. In that space, it's so very difficult for her to feel worthy of people who are good and caring.
Please tell us a bit more, if you're comfortable. I'm so glad that she is still connected to her academics. Her academics may not be happening in the same way that you once envisioned but the fact that she is engaged and committed to a goal is a positive. Does she have a part time job or is she interested in volunteering? These may offer some sort of socialization while giving her a sense of purpose and place?
Is she connected to a counselor?
As a fellow parent to a lonely gal, I am sending a cyber hug your way.
11-29-2018 02:26 PM
I find the idea of going to museums or historic centers extremely interesting, as well as dancing, painting and singing workshops, so that teenagers can interact and learn more about art and also how to express themselves. Surely your daughter doing something like that and meeting people with similar tastes can interject more and thus create more friends.
11-30-2018 03:42 PM
11-30-2018 07:44 PM
Just a second reminder that ReachOut forums are anonymous, as a result I edited and removed some comments. As per the guidelines, please refrain from sharing names, locations, email addresses or social media pages.
In line with what @compassion has detailed, are there any hobbies or activities that your children enjoy doing? Do any of these activities have a social aspect to them? Does the school or community offer any support or resources for combating loneliness? There are sometimes after school care programs or holiday programs so kids can get out of the house to do something fun for the holidays @lalyjelly239 @Lonelychild @Motherofteen