It's no secret that parenting is hard. Despite the numerous challenges, though, us parents are doing our best to raise our little ones to be the best version of themselves they can be. So what happens when our kids don't fit in to the social behavioral patterns expected of their age group? How can we help socially awkward children fit in and make friends, while simultaneously celebrating and cultivating their individuality and unique personalities?
Reddit user not_your_guru asked for advice to this age-old, often heartbreaking topic. She shares, "My daughter (5) gets really hyper around other kids. She tries really hard to be funny and make them laugh (which never works so I'm not sure why she still tries). Sometimes she'll make a face or talk nonsense then look for validation and ask, 'Was that funny?!' when the kids say 'no' she doubles up her efforts which only makes it worse. Basically she bounces around in circles around her peers and her voice gets really high pitched and squeaky. It gets to a point where kids just get so annoyed they avoid her. Her stepsisters and the neighborhood kids always single her out because of these behaviors. It's breaks my heart."
As the parent of a sometimes socially ecstatic 7-year-old child and, to a somewhat lesser degree, 5-year-old, I can hardcore relate to this loving mom. We want the world to love our precious children and it's painful when they don't. So, how can we help our kids fit in without squelching that fire that makes them their unique selves? The parents of Reddit weigh in on how to help your socially awkward kid and, well, sometimes the internet comes through when you need it to the most: