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Know who you are and what you are talented at when approaching a group or individual.

Keep the conversation short and devote your time to showing yourself friendly and genuinely interested in others.

Complement on something trendy you see within the group or an individual who seems as if they are waiting for a turn to speak. Show short but specific interest with a subtle compliment and a comment followed by an introduction if it’s welcomed.

Look for openness in stance and general body language. If one is entertaining the group you can approach and look on with a smile. Compliment if you up for it.

Offer an appropriate gift preferably to a small group, gesture or something you have extra and willing to share.

Wait for the person to ask more information about you and give a short response with a small cool smile.

Any debate should remain cordial or avoided but if engaged, make sure you let the person know that you understand the point of view or how someone may come to that conclusion.

These are only a few pointers that may each need to be expanded for middle schoolers or older. Parents this is a really good place to make a difference by arranging engagements at your home, movie theater or somewhere the kids could have fun and connect. Only one other kid the more extreme the avoidance because the other kid may pair up with the most fun person. If your child is nervous, make sure the place for the play date is somewhere your kid is comfortable and or possibly skilled. One final note for parents, do not encourage or perpetuate extreme avoidance behavior. As time progresses the effects and refusal may only become magnified in some cases. It also may be in your best interest to facilitate these pair ups because if the avoidance or lack of friends is due to impulsiveness with disregard for boundaries or extreme behavior, the child could possibly find another with similar or more of the negative behavior.

Note: Some of the challenges and difficulties could be signs of larger challenges that you should speak to your provider or professional. Don’t believe it’s just how they are.. Play and interactions are critical to their development.

Kidstrive to be included and accepted even though they say otherwise. Just help them with the how.

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