Does your child have no friends? Is this something that’s causing some turmoil or stress, as you worry that it’s something that you need to take action on?
If your child, or teenager, or even adult offspring has no friends or a very limited social circle, it’s not necessarily cause for concern that warrants immediately jumping into action. sometimes, it’s okay, but before we dig into that – let’s define some terms.
“Normal”: When we talk about what’s normal, we mean what’s typical and standard, and to be a bit more specific, in this context, we mean healthy. What you’re really asking is probably whether it’s healthy or unhealthy for a child to have no friends, right?
“No friends”: When you say that your child has no friends, do you mean that they have absolutely zero friends? Or they have some acquaintances at school but not a best friend? Or a few kids they hang out with but don’t really open up to to talk about things?
Related: Here’s what to do when your daughter has no friends.
Is It Normal For a Child to Not Have Friends?
No, it’s not normal for a child to have no friends.
Typically, most kids have at least one or two friends, if not more.
If a child is having an impossible time making friendships, that’s not “normal” in the sense that it’s standing and typical. It’s atypical, in general, but that’s not necessarily a cause for concern…
A normal part of the developmental process is for kids to feel kind of anxious sometimes, or to just lack the confidence that can help people meet new friends.
If this is something that’s prolonged, to a point where a child is never able to make friendships or maintain relationships, then this is something for a parent or caregiver to be concerned with and to look into rectifying.
Sometimes, it’s simply a matter of circumstances. Maybe the child is very focused on a certain hobby and doesn’t have any friends who like to spend their free time in the same way. Or, maybe they’ve moved recently, or had a failing out with some old friends, or something else that will eventually pass and isn’t going to be a lifelong issue for them.
If the child or teenager simply hasn’t had enough opportunity to meet different people, then you could try to facilitate some opportunities for them to meet new people.
What If A Child Only Has 1 or 2 Friends?
If your child has one or two friends, and they seem happy with it, then it’s really not something to worry about. If your child has no friends and seems happy with it, it’s still worth it to encourage them to meet some friends, to help them do it, and to see if the lack of friendship is a result of something deeper that will need to be worked on.
Some kids are just shy and take a while to warm up to people. You don’t necessarily need to put a ton of pressure on them to have a more vivid social life. If they have a few good pals, that’s all anyone can really hope for. A few strong, solid friendships is a lot more fulfilling than having a thousand acquaintances.