That’s my girl. She does great with a few people, but get her in a crowd and she completely clams up and clings to me. Today I brought her to a birthday party at one of those kid places with all the climbing and different activities. All of the other kids were taking off into the large climbing structure, but my Leah stood next to me, literally shaking and covering her ears. She finally ran in with her uncle for a few minutes, but then the party leaders gathered the kids to get them into two groups for organized activities.
The first activity was a lazer maze. Leah immediately did not want to do it because she is afraid of the dark. My niece, Mikayla, offered to take her, but she still refused. Okay, so I told her we would wait until it was her group’s turn to climb the rock wall. She watched the first group do it, one by one and she seemed pretty psyched while she was in my arms. She went in with her group and lasted in line all of about 10 seconds before she is shaking like a leaf and begging me to get her out.
Being afraid to do things is one thing, and I get it. But my kid then sat at the table quietly eating her food and cake and not interacting with any of the other children. I know she didn’t know a lot of the kids there, but she knew her four cousins! It was so sad and heartbreaking to watch.
We do playdates with a couple of people once in awhile, but they don’t live near enough to do it all the time. Right now we are not planning on preschool because of the cost, and I have been teaching her at home, but she really needs some socialization. She is such a great kid, with a huge imagination and a kind heart. I want her to be able to share that with other kids.
Okay, parental readers, I am asking you all for advice here. How can I get my kid to meet some friends, and more importantly, how do I teach her how to interact with other children in a positive manner and not to be frightened? Help!