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 Post subject: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:11 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:57 pm
Posts: 1446
I think DS2 has had a personality transplant and I find it quite disconcerting.

He has always been too gregarious and outgoing and this has meant that he rubs peers up the wrong way. It's not surprising that at his new school he has no friends. He is one of three boys in a class of 12, but the group have been most unwelcoming - always making snide comments and ostracising him from every activity. That's another issue and often it takes a while for him to gain friends. I'm not happy but at the moment I need to give it some time.

However, instead of continually trying to be liked he now reads in the classroom during all breaks; DS never reads, he hates reading. He also, very matter of factly, has said that he is a weird boy who is just not liked and he'll need to live with it. I'm worried about his self esteem and the image he has about himself but I'm more worried about this calm resignation. He used to come home with "End of the World" and "Woe is Me" stories but now I need to enquire and when I do he almost seems emotionless.

He is eleven, maybe it's his age, is this normal or should I be concerned?

Edit: I must add that he loves the school and the music and says he feels comfortable there. :?


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:26 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
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Just dashing off on the school run, so a quick response. Have you had a chat with his teachers to see if this is how he really behaves at school? They won't know any different and may think that this is normal for him & he's just not very sociable. If she/he knew differently there might be more encouragement to join in. Also, I think the teacher should know how the other children are behaving.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:31 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:00 am
Posts: 99
WFG - my heart goes out to you. It is good that you are honest about your DS2, but I do think that he perhaps needs some help. Maybe it is time to speak to his form tutor/teacher? Having seen one of my own go from gregarious to resigned it really can be quite disconcerting and it may be that the school is able to offer him some help.
Whilst it is lovely to think that a boy that loathes reading or is at best a reluctant reader is now picking up books - to stay in class and read instead of going out at break is not healthy and sad. In my own case, things went from bad to worse and the rebuilding of self-esteem can be very tough. It isn't right that he comes out with things he does and it must be very hard for you to hear it. It may be that the school can offer him some coping strategies, but please don't leave it any longer. Seek some help - if you're lucky the school might have observed it and be aware or alternatively you may be opening their eyes to a problem.
Good luck xx


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:53 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:57 pm
Posts: 1446
Thanks for the replies and I'm especially interested to read your comments Sportsmum. I will go an look over your previous posts if you have discussed your issues on here. I did speak to the housemistress this morning in very vague terms because he is going on a trip tomorrow and I couldn't bear him walking about the science museum on his own. :cry:

He has a small group of nice boys that he has met at his local choir and I'm going to put him into a church youth club (a more tolerant environment, generally) so he can meet some more boys. But I will make more of an effort to explain that, having only two boys to befriend and nine girls in his class, its not surprising that he has no like-minded peers; it's not him, just the unfortunate dynamics.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:07 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2010 9:16 pm
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WFG how awful for you. Personally I love a gregarious personality and it must be very disconcerting for you seeing such a change in him. I agree with other posters. I would definitely approach the school and tell them of your concerns.

Do you think the fact that he is one of only three boys in the class is part of the problem. I have three sons and have found that in year 7 all the boys at their schools seemed to be vying for their position in the pack. If your son is so outgoing maybe they don't know how to handle him and instead have decided the best way forward is to leave him out. This behaviour may just stem from one of the boys and the other is just following along. I am sure it won't take much to resolve the problem with some assistance from the teachers.

It brings back memories for me as I once found myself reading in the classroom rather than going into the playground in year 7, luckily for me I was befriended by a lovely girl who noticed and I became friends with all her friends. We are still very close to this day. I am sure things will work out for your son.

(Our posts crossed)


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:11 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:44 pm
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3 boys and 9 girls in his class? The school has done a superb job of ensuring that at least one child is going to spend a lot of time on their own. And unfortunately it is your son.

I remember speaking to a teacher at my son's school and they had to reorganise the 3 year classes as they ended up with 3 girls in one class which they knew was going to cause a problem.

Is this the whole of the year group?

I do feel for you - my son has ended up without a "best" friend, but free entrance to all the other groups of children as he is "normal" friends with all of them. Yes, it means that he does not have the same person to walk to swimming with, or sit next to on outings, but there is always someone he gets on with that has fallen out with their own "best" friend and needs my son then.

Is it healthy - no idea, but he seems happy enough and there is never a shortage of children wanting to come over after school and I am sure it is not my cooking they want!!!

I hope the school realises that they are made the problem far worse with the unbalaned dynamics at the moment and do something about it quickly.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:16 am 
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I would say the fact that there are only 3 boys will have a big impact on friendship groups .My DS2 ( nearly 10 )is also in a tiny year group and often has to take himself off to find children in other year groups or play by himself. Your DS reading on his own sounds like a defence mechanism whereas it will appear he isn't interested when he really is. Why does he think he's weird ? What horrid things are these boys saying ? Perhaps if he makes friends with these choir boys he will realise that he's ok after all and that will give him confidence to persevere at this new school. It is difficult to start somewhere completely different ....did anyone else start with him ?


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:24 am 
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No one is normally allowed to start mid year, he is the only one. He is in a mixed Year 5/6 class (the only class) and the school is girl-heavy. Pupils arrive in every year group but there will be a bigger intake in Year 7. I just hope the two boys don't try and turn the new kids against him when that happens, but that is a very long way off and all these issues may be gone by then.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:28 am 
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It is heart breaking to see a happy go lucky child go in a shell. 3 boys!!! That must be some dynamics. At eleven, boys are not so young that they can be led by hand "be friends" with someone. It is difficult making friends when you have very less to choose from. If not friends, can a truce be made between the boys where they are cordial with each other? Is there anything a teacher can do to intervene? Hope that by the end of this term friendship blossoms between the boys.

_________________
Having one child makes you a parent; having two you are a referee.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I be worried?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:59 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
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How long will he be at this school for before he moves to Purcell or elsewhere? If it's not too long I'd just concentrate on the outside school friendships and thank your lucky starts that he can get some reading and homework done during breaktime? If he's going to be there for a longer period of time you need to think about how to develop things with the other two boys. Are the other two boys such no-hopers? Have you had them round to house several times, or taken them on a trip out of some sort, one by one (not the two of them together). Also, aren't any of the girls possible friends?

Difficult ratios but you might get there. It's taken one of my children 3 and a half years to get properly assimilated into a group of only 5 girls. It's horrible, but really don't worry. So long as your son has at least one friendship somewhere, of either sex, and it doesn't have to be in school, he will be "normal" and remain normal. Friendships take time to build up, and longer maybe for your son. Unless you provide the time for them outside school hours they might not happen. At 11 breaks at school are short, and if it's a "serious" school there is not much chatting going on in lessons, so friendships will not happen unless the parents facilitate it outside school hours, in a subtle way if necessary.


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