I’m Scared for My Daughter
Looking at my 10 year old daughter I see a sporty child with a close knit group of friends who does well in school.
I also see a socially awkward child who struggles finding things to keep her busy, staying committed to a week camp or extra curricular activity and the need to have a friend close by as a way to try new things.
And, when I see this I see me.
This is my story except for the sports (I was in band and did photography). But, why am I scared?
She’s a hard-core follower (like me) and as she grows up and attends middle school with thousands of new kids, she won’t have the shelter of her friends near by and is forced to make new friends.
This week she’s in volleyball camp and I asked one of her friends to join and they did but she’s always late and today (Thursday) she didn’t come and I don’t think she’ll come on Friday (the last day).
Fortunately, my daughter’s friend made “friends” with another girl in volleyball camp but I can tell that this “new” friend isn’t really friends with my daughter. She’s just the girl she was introduced to when my daughter’s friend chummed up with this new girl (we will call Abigail).
So a lot of volleyball work is partners and because my daughter’s friend isn’t here my daughter pairs up with Abigail.
It’s sad seeing her with Abigail. She makes no effort to get to know this girl and just does the drills with her.
Abigail is a bit more forthright. If they play a game of tag she offers to be it. If they start a new thing, she offers to go first.
I’m glad my daughter is seeing this, but I know my daughter would rather go last, and not be seen.
And when I see that, I see me.
I just feel this is different than me. I didn’t feel I was socially awkward and I handled myself well. We moved elementary schools and we moved from California to Texas when I was 11 or 12.
I wasn’t traumatized. I don’t even remember much about the moves probably because I made friends easily.
My daughter was fortunate to make friends in kindergarten and they stuck. She hasn’t had the chance to make new friends (and never did during extra curricular activities).