Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Shy, Reserved, Call It What You Will

When hubby went to collect DC from nursery on Monday, one of the nursery workers pulled him aside to tell him they are a little concerned about DC. Apparently, in group situations, he's not at all keen on talking, singing, or generally joining in. One-on-one, or two, he's absolutely fine - his commuinication skills seem to be above average with the words/phrases he uses, etc. And we know all too well how much he likes to chatter, read, sing, etc when at home.

So they are calling in a child psychologist-type person to observe him in the hope of finding out whether his unwillingness to join in is, or will be, a problem. They are a little concerned because he'll be off to school in eight months at which point group situations will be something he has to contend with all day, every day. I guess they don't want his shyness (or whatever it may be) to have any negative impact on how he gets on out in the big, bad, educational world.

I'm unsure what to think about all of this. I know full well that I have never enjoyed, and still do not enjoy, speaking to a large (maybe more than three or four) group of people, unless they are people I know well, have known for a long time and know to be on the same wavelength as me. And I'm 37 years older than dear little DC, so you'd think by now I'd be ok in those sort of situations. I mentioned it to my Mum and she says I was the same when at school; the teachers often mentioned to her and Dad that I didn't like speaking up in class.

So it would seem that DC is taking after me; although I cannot think of a time when he would have seen me talking (or not, as the case may be) to a large group of people and clearly having a hard time of it. Does this mean that his shyness/reserve is genetic? Or is it simply that lots/all/some children go through a phase like this? Should we be concerned? My initial though was to worry and think about what we can do to help DC; there was also a fleeting moment of blaming myself for not providing DC with a sibling, as if that might be the solution to the issue; but then I also thought that he should be allowed to be himself, he's not even four years old - maybe he hasn't found his feet in all/any social situations just yet. We can't all be gregarious, outgoing, etc, etc, can we? Diff'rent strokes for diff'rent folks, right?

Do any fellow bloggers have any experience of this type of behaviour with their children/grandchildren/themselves? Any hints or tips or thoughts to pass on? All will be gratefully received!


  1. I was very shy when I was young, lots of people are. If he likes to chatter and sing at home I don't think there can be anything serious to worry about. Try not to worry about it or he may pick up on it. I'm sure he'll be fine.

  2. This is exactly how our number 2 son i
    was, so shy and we consistantly hear at parents evening that he never participates in class unless asked out right to do so. I was the same so we don't worry too much, he speaks plenty at home! DC will change in time, he's still very young. We have just encouraged number 2 to have conversations with people (and to try to look them in the eye) when the opportunity arises (we don't force it.

  3. We had an only child that some at her schools thought was shy and timid in group situations. At home and with friends she was completely different. I talked to her about it and she said she was comfortable, just found large groups boring, she didn't get much of a chance to talk.
    She did fine, graduated early did a BA and a Masters and works at an interesting job and she still doesn't like large groups.


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