For some children and adolescence, connecting with peers and developing friendships can be very hard. They don’t know what to say and are afraid to initiate social contact. Irrational thoughts of these children influence their behaviour, for example: they think that other people find them stupid when they try to start a conversation. Subsequently, when this other person doesn’t make any contact with the child, they interpreted this as evidence of their already existing thought of “being stupid”, which again strenthens this thought.
With diverse methods, including cognitive behavioural therapy, we challenge those irrational thoughts and substitute them by “helping thoughts”. This will eventually lead to an increased confidence about themselves and their environment.
Besides insecurity, a lack of social skills can also result in having problems developing friendships. For example, a child might react strangely when approaching others, show dominant behaviour, find it hard to adapt to others or avoid making any contact at all.
When this seems the matter, the main focus is to improve their social skills.
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