01-02-2018 12:24 PM
my son is struggling with confidence at college he has always been quiet and shy and I thought he would get more confident the older he got but not the case. At home he is chatty funny and never shy around anyone he knows but when outside the home and family he switches and seems to be unable to communicate and make friends he has never suffered from bullying of any kind I also worry that he makes things up he will go out saying hes heading out with friends but in fact Ive seen him on his own when Ive said wheres you mates he just says theyve gone home. he is now 17 and hes at full time college Ive had his tutor ask if theres any problems as he is so quiet and he has said there isnt any to myself and the tutor, I really could do with some help as he doesnt seem to think theres a problem but hes unable to get a part time job as when he goes for interviews hes closed off and quiet and then doesnt get it which then knocks him even more
01-02-2018 04:14 PM - last edited on 01-03-2018 12:30 PM by Sophi-RO
Hi @doball-96_ and welcome to the forums,
I can see that you care a lot about how your son is affected in social situations, and are looking for ways to help him gain some confidence. I'm going to recommend this resource on Getting help for teenagers to you.
You could also potentially recommend these articles from our Youth site to your son: How to make new friends and, because you're worried about the effects of his quiteness on his ability to find a part time job, How to ace a job interview.
We have a great community here, and I'm sure some will be along soon to help you with things that have worked for them. Maybe @taokat has some advice to offer.
01-02-2018 10:13 PM
Hey @doball-96_ sorry to hear about what your Son is going through, I can understand your worry and concern. What do you think the reason is that he's holding back from opening up to you?
Does he have any siblings, perhaps a certain persona he wants to uphold to the family? It definitely sounds like he could benefit from some counselling, has he ever worked with a therapist before? How's your own self-care going?
Do you have good personal supports within the family/friendship?
01-03-2018 03:51 PM - edited 01-03-2018 03:54 PM
Hi @doball-96_, welcome to the forum. It can be so hard seeing our kids so shy and introverted around others when we know how different they can be at home. I'm sorry you're going through this and can hear how worried you are about your son. It's great that you've reached out for support.
My daughter lost her first job because she was so shy, and has spent the last two years in her room, but definitely coming out more this last year, so I understand how distressing it can be. I worried about her education, her lack of social interaction and her inability to function effectively around others.
You say that your son's always been shy, and the teenage years are tough one's, so I think there's still time for him to come out of his shell I'm wondering if he feels safe and comfortable at home with family and those he's familiar with, which is why he is more outgoing there? He may be saying he's going he's out with friends because he doesn't want you to worry about him? Does he generally seem to like spending time on his own?
Some recommendations made to me to help build my daughter's confidence have been/still are, really effective. I acknowledge her strengths and things about her that make her great to be around. I tell her how much I like it when we talk and laugh together. I acknowledge her strengths in conversations we have or when she's pushed through her nerves or anxiety. It was also suggested that I talk to her about what she sees are her strengths and build on those. She now has a casual job at a local fast food outlet that employs loads of teens which has helped boost her confidence more.
How would your son feel about volunteering somewhere in your local area? That could be a great place to start and might build him up and help him in applying for paid work.
The links @Danielle-RO has provided give some really awesome info and worth a read! Some of your words around schooling twigged me to the possibility that you're overseas, so being an Australian site our referrals won't be relevant but the content absolutely is. There's another link here on self esteem and teenagers that you might find interesting too. Sorry to bombard you, but the links will be here for you to refer back to at anytime.