Am I restricting my sons socialising?


It is Tom’s birthday party next week, only 3 of his friends are coming, he’s devistated. He’s only been invited to two parties all year and I suspect the invitations were more to do with my friendship with the mums than the boys friendship. He is starting to realise he doesn’t get invited to parties. He places a lot on his need to have friends at school but his behaviour at times, especially around the school run, probably puts some parents off inviting him over. 

He is a very sociable little boy and appears to have lots of friends when I’ve watched him in the playground however that doesn’t relate to invites to parties or after school. We’ve tried some after school meet ups but Tom really struggles and it’s not fair on him to do them regularly so I don’t go round inviting people over, but I now feel I may be letting him down. 

It’s such a struggle to balance building friendships and social skills with a need for Tom to self regulate after school. I’m not sure if I’m getting the balance right and feel I may be to blame for not making more of an effort with the other parents, most of the time I dread the school run as it is such hard work and I don’t have time (sanity) to socialise. It doesn’t help that I’ve not been well for several months and currently feeling sorry for myself as I await a date for further surgery and the stress of end of term disregulation hits me. 

We all need a break and time to reflect on how we support Tom as he goes into year 2, it’s a new teacher & a different mix of children. I just want him to be happy and I worry this party is going to be a disappointment as he had such big ideas about what he wanted to do with his friends. 

After all the things we’ve struggled with I didn’t think we’d have such a hard time getting people to a party!

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2 thoughts on “Am I restricting my sons socialising?

  1. Newlyadoptivemum

    Our son is now 4 and we have always struggled with play dates, and have had very few. He can be gorgeous and fun, but sometimes moody/aggressive with other children. It’s very unpredictable and we have had some tricky and uncomfortable moments. You get the ‘all kids do that’ but I’m not sure….. He’s moving from nursery to school now and just very recently we have had a couple of play dates with children from nursery. We met a boy and his mum this weekend and it was pretty good. After 1.5 hours I could see the behaviour going downhill but it was in the other boy too so I just wrapped it up diplomatically ‘it’s lunchtime etc’ I’m hoping we can meet again. I’m trying to be moderately braver and accept or initiate just a couple more play dates and I’m trying to think of a few principles: 1. keep it short. 2. Avoid activities that are more stressful. Choose a time of day that may work (so I relate to your after school being tricky). 3. Choose kids whose parents you either know or get a sense may work with less than perfect behaviour. 4. Stay involved in the play 5. Talk to your child beforehand ‘ sometimes it’s hard to play with new people isn’t it? What might you do if you are finding it hard? How can mummy help?” Etc.
    But onto the party…. Personally I think that birthday parties for kids tend to be huge affairs now. I’ve decided to defy convention.mandear friend said her notion was one guest for each year of your age so 4 guests if you are four. That’s nothing like what most folks do, but it’s really sensible. If you factor that into an adopted child who may have ‘ delays’ then your son’s 3 guests is lovely. It may be hard for him to see that if other children have big parties. I hope he has a wonderful time with those 3 children. Learning how to be a friend does not need to be a volume or numbers game.
    I don’t know if any of this helps you. Developing friendships has felt like a theme for us too.

    Liked by 1 person

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