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How To Cope Up And Encourage Kid During This Quarantine Time When No Friends Around.

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by gknew, Dec 8, 2020.

  1. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Hi all,
    My DS is 7+ and attending his classes online. Since March, he is missing his friends and staying home all time. He is the only child and that upset him a lot.
    We were in american community where we have no Indian friends. So I moved to indian community where there are 90percent indians. He got few friends last year.
    That too I struggled a lot to get them involved. I used to arrange play dates often and for dinner most of the time. Kids used to come home and play. He have only handful number of friends nearby. In my community, 4 houses in a building. There are no kids in my building and the opposite one. All bachelor's and young couples. So he don't have friends to play with nearby.
    Few other friends are in the same community, but it's little far. But still parents drove them here and they used to play after school and weekends.
    Since March, we are not going to anyone's house. He is home all the time. He catch cold easily. So we didn't go out anywhere in March and April. Since may, we started to take him to park where there is no crowd and we play with him and come back home. We did that till November.
    But he miss his friends so much. I was doing video call with his friends since March. He was chatting with them in a group video call. But unfortunately, all his friends went to India in May and June. 2 left because of family emergency and 2 because of visa issues.

    So he don't have anyone to chat with even for video and phone chat. He doesn't have any cousins too. So he is telling me that he feel so bored to be alone and no cousins for him.
    He also understand that it's covid pandemic and he don't want to go out too. We had to force him to come out to the park play. He is kind of scared too. I am trying to change that and he is doing ok now. He is ok to play outside now.
    We do have some kids play outside in my community in the evenings. I don't know if they include him. They are playing together with their mom's close group. Here we have many small groups and they okay within them and don't include others. He got 4 friends who all came new to this place like me and he got those friends. I tried to get into some existing group and I couldn't mingle with them as they don't have even smile back.

    I am trying so hard to engage him inside the house. Since winter started, we can't go to the park. So have to keep him engaged and motivated inside the house. I don't know how to get him some friends. Anyone in this situation and something helps you? Please share.
    He don't have any friends in this community from his current grade. So he couldn't meet anyone from his class too. I hope this will change once he starts the school face to face. But it takes time for things to settle down after the vaccine. So I don't know how to motivate him..
    I don't have any patio or porch in my community. We have an indoor patio called as sun room. So we don't have any balcony and have to be indoors or go to the park to play.
    My dh wanted to buy a house and he has been insisting this for last few months. He is telling that he will get some if his own space to play with and he will like that environment. Since we are in 2BR apartment, he feels that he will like a house and explore the space. I am still deciding on it. I don't know if that will help him. We didn't start the research yet about the house and school ratings. We don't have much friends in this city. Dh doesn't have any colleagues too. His colleagues are in west coast and chicago. So we don't know anyone here. So I am hesitating to decide upon the house buy. Dh is confident that we might get few friends in the neighborhood if we buy a house.
    Please share your thoughts or inputs which helped you in anyway to cope up with kid.
     
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  2. Rihana

    Rihana IL Hall of Fame

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    If you can share some indoor things, activities or games that you have already tried, we can suggest some more.

    A house with a backyard on some space in the front to put a basketball hoop etc will help a bit but the "no friends to play with" issue can remain.
     
    gknew likes this.
  3. BhumiBabe

    BhumiBabe Platinum IL'ite

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    I think it’s important to create a social bubble play group, so that your son will not feel so isolated. My 5 year son meets his friends every week, even if they live very far (30-45 mins away). We maintained this 3 family play group for the past few months and it has helped all of us. The kids do play indoors, because it cold here.
     
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  4. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Thanks BhumiBabe.
    To be honest , I don't have anyone who is that close to me in this city right now. I had few close friends who are my kid's friends mom's. They all left. So I don't have any friends either. I do have 2 friends who are newly wed. So, that doesn't count either. They are in early 20s and I won't disturb them much. We just meet sometime and I invite them.
    I don't know how to get some close circle during this pandemic. In my community, they're are kids okay groups. But it happens only withing their group. It's difficult to get into their group.
    Even I want to have some close group only. Not many. Beacuse, we will know each other better and during this pandemic , if we are close enough, we will know about others exposure if they go out and update other family respectively.
    It will be very transparent too. I feel so bad for my kid that no one to play with. All kids are playing indoors now and go to each other's home. I can see that in my community and none of them have called my kid to play with . Even though their kid knows my kid. To be precise, in my community, kids play in front of apartment in certain spots in the evening during summer. So, front of my apartment, there is a big spot where moms will meet up (only the same closed group) and the kids will play in front of my door. I used to take my kid outside that time and none of them smile or kids ok to play with. If it's not pandemic, I will let him to play with them. Now, I feel hesitant that if they play only with group and my kid is a outsider and they might think about the exposure. So we take him to park everyday.

    I don't know how to overcome this. I even asked dh to change the apartment. Because in my building, there are no kids currently. Last tenant had a kid if my son's age and they played well all the time.easy to go around both the houses. If there is a kid in my building, he will not feel that bad and alone.
    So I am thinking if we move to a house or an apartment which has kids nearby, hoping that will be helpful. I don't know what to do. This makes me so depressed. I am so dealing with some health issue since may and been going around to doctors offices. Along with that stress , this added up. Just venting out. Thanks for reading.
     
  5. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Thank you Rihana.
    Yeah. You may be right. Even if I get a house and move in, I am not sure if he will get friends immediately. It's easy to get friends when they go to school and meet up in the bus. Now, being virtual, it's really difficult.
    I don't know what should I do to get him some friends. I never expect that all will leave at the same time. It was so stressful for us and him.

    I tried many indoor games in the last few months. Taught him chess. Got some board games like monopoly.dart boards. Basket ball indoor . Piano. Coming to activities, did many. Coloring, painting, canvas art, play dough. Irrespective of my health issue, I struggling a lot to keep him engaged. This really stresses me a lot. I want to give him some friends to talk with. I have few close friends who are like family in other states. We even visited them last week during his break. It's a 10hr drive to their place and we spent a week there. So that he can play with the kids. We used to have video chat with them everyday. Those kids are 4 and 3 year younger to my kid. Still we used to chat through video call even before the pandemic. So, he is ok now after this trip. I am trying hard to get some friends. Don't know what to do. If school starts and once everything normal, I wouldn't worry at all. Because he will make friends if someone talk to him. So he will get friends in the bus. Till everything gets back to normal, I have to work little hard to cope up with this and will work it out.
     
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  6. BhumiBabe

    BhumiBabe Platinum IL'ite

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    I would suggest talking to the class teacher to have an opportunity to talk to other parents to set up some play dates during the week. I know some of my friends are creating parents network to handle the isolation for the kids.
     
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  7. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Thank yo so much for this idea.
    I will try that out. I can try contacting other parents and kids can talk over the phone.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2020
  8. gknew

    gknew Gold IL'ite

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    Can you suggest some more activities for his age appropriate to do indoors.
     
  9. Rihana

    Rihana IL Hall of Fame

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    TBH, I started typing a response but it became like a lecture, so I discarded it. The gist of it was that you are trying way too hard to provide him friends, interaction and engagement. Agreed it is tough to be 7 years old, in a pandemic and bored. Tougher to be the parent of the 7 year old. I have written this earlier too -- to watch one's child struggle to make or keep friends or lose them is hard and gut-wrenching. The consolation is that this experience is harder on the parent than on the child.

    The problem will not go away once the pandemic is gone or you move to an apartment complex or house in a neighborhood with children of the same age. Even if the neighborhood has many Indians. We now laugh about it -- I once told my child I will give $20 if he/she goes out and for five minutes joins the kids playing in the nearby park.

    Anyway, you asked for indoor activities ideas, not a sermon. : ) There are quite a few older threads with lists of activities that also touch upon the importance of the child experiencing boredom. Here is one and it has links to other threads as well:
    How Do You Entertain Kids In The Weekend?
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2020
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  10. AppuMom

    AppuMom Gold IL'ite

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    I can relate to your situation.My son doesnt have friends except one with whom he goes for walk once in a while.He attends regular school,but way too many protocols to maintain social distance is stressful.They dont have music(as kids have to share instruments) ,swimming and school reduced gym time..so its no longer the same fun filled school hrs.He hates it and every other day tells me 'life is boring'. he is single child and no more complain about lonliness but I know he is not happy inside :-(
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2020
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