Dear Jacqui, My son is 20 years old and doesn’t seem to have any friends. Please can you give me some advice about this?
Nearly two thirds of teenagers and young adults have difficulties with friends for different reasons according to Elizabeth A. Laugeson, Clinical Psychologist. Fifteen percent are Peer Rejected which means they are excluded by the larger peer group even though they seek friends. Fifteen percent are Socially Neglected which means they are set apart as they rarely seek to engage with their peer group. These two sub-groups are prone to being bullied as the individuals within them are isolated. Fifty five percent of teens or young adults have average acceptance by the larger peer group and fifteen percent are popular meaning they are well known and often well liked. Peer Rejected and Socially Neglected teens need the following:
- They need to learn good social communication skills: reading body language, good conversational skills, traits of good friends, being a good friend, dealing with arguments and teasing.
- They need to pick good friends with whom they have things in common e.g. others who play computer games, or chess.
- They need to spend time in the social groups of these friends with whom they have things in common.
- They need to have a good reputation or move into a social group where they can have a fresh start.
These skills can be developed and supported through my practice. I offer sessions via Skype for these skills.