Parenting

My Child Is Shy. What Do I Do?

Anurima
3 to 7 years

Created by Anurima
Updated on Mar 23, 2018

My Child Is Shy What Do I Do

Father to a child psychologist ‘My 5-year-old daughter is very shy, how can I help her overcome this problem and help her become more social?’ The inherent problem with this question is that it is possibly heavily weighed down by judgmental labelling. I say “possibly” because the shyness could either be just a trait that the child has, and she is growing well emotionally, or in some cases it could indicate underlying issues. Read on to find out more.

Shyness In Children

In calling a child “shy” we are unnecessarily labeling them, and making excuses or being apologetic on their behalf. What a parent needs to understand is that a child can be shy, yet be completely comfortable in her skin. A shy child is capable of being a wonderful listener and showing immense empathy.

As Shelja Sen,a child psychologist and family therapist, rightly pointed out, in a workshop on Child Behaviour, that as parents, are we expecting ‘designer childhoods’ for our children. We want our children to strive in all aspects; Do we want our child to be a ‘perfect child’. She points out that parents need to understand that each child is wired differently, each child has her own set of capabilities and drawbacks and it is perhaps not fair to expect our child to excel in each and every aspect.

How To Recognize If Your Child Is Shy, Or If There Is A More Serious Problem?

If she seems happy overall, if she seems to be at peace, if she makes eye contact and is nice to be around – then even if she speaks little, this is just the way she is. If the child seems more troubled and withdrawn, refuses to speak when spoken to, or doesn’t even make eye contact, it is worth investigating further.

How Do I Help My Shy Child?

Shyness is a personality trait and not a disorder. A child who is considered shy can be highly sensitive and very aware of his/her environment; and to some other people, it may seem as if they are very absorbed in their own ideas and less interested in social interaction. Such differences in personalities are usually taken as a negative trait by adults.

  • As Steven Rudolph, American Educationist, pointed out at a Parentune Parents day workshop ‘Do not push your child to be an engineer or a doctor if he doesn’t have an inclination for it. Remember an apple tree planted in Kerala will not flourish as it is a wrong environment for it. Same is true for children. Nourish them and not forcibly try and change their nature’
  • He also added ‘for an introvert child, do not push him, rebuke him or ridicule him. Accept his nature. But also equip him with the skills of dealing with a situation such as an interview or at a party where his introvert nature can perhaps cause him discomfort’

If you are a parent of a shy child, it can be frustrating to watch your child struggle in many situations, especially if you have been the outgoing type. The key is to help work with your child, rather than against, his/her natural tendencies.

Did you find this blog on helping a shy child, useful? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments section!

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| Apr 26, 2018

thanku good suggestion

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| Apr 26, 2018

thanku good suggestion

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| Mar 27, 2018

thank you mam

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| Mar 26, 2018

good message

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| Mar 17, 2018

thank you I will try my best

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| Mar 12, 2018

a Big Thank you for your help

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| Mar 12, 2018

a Big Thank you for your help

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| Mar 09, 2018

Thank for suggestions....

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| Mar 09, 2018

Thank for suggestions....

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| Jan 19, 2018

Thanks for ur help and support

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| Jan 19, 2018

Thanks for ur help

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| Jan 19, 2018

Thanks for ur help

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| Dec 07, 2017

thank you indeed it will be a great help for me

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| Oct 03, 2017

thnks for sharing

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| Oct 03, 2017

thnks for sharing

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| Oct 03, 2017

thnks for sharing

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| Oct 03, 2017

thnks for sharing

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| Sep 17, 2017

Very very useful will it b for me as I am also mother of a shy child. I will definitely follow ur instructions. hope it works... thanks a lot!!

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| Sep 17, 2017

Very very useful will it b for me as I am also mother of a shy child. I will definitely follow ur instructions. hope it works... thanks a lot!!

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| Sep 16, 2017

thanks for sharing.. I need it...

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| Sep 12, 2017

Thnkuhhh mam

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| Aug 08, 2017

thanks I will try

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| Aug 08, 2017

thanks I will try

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| Aug 08, 2017

thanks I will try

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| Jul 21, 2017

thank a lot ji

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| Jul 13, 2017

Thanks for ur advise n it will help me a lot

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| Jun 14, 2017

thank u.. nice article.. very helpful for mah son

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| Jun 07, 2017

nice article... it helps me a lot for my daughter

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| Jun 06, 2017

thank you for this useful article....

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| May 31, 2017

His own and then we have any of my friend

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| May 31, 2017

His own and

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| May 30, 2017

thanks , very useful n nice article. it will also helpful for me.

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| May 29, 2017

very helpful article

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| May 28, 2017

thx it will very helpful

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| May 28, 2017

thanks i think it will be helpful for me

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| May 28, 2017

thanks I agree

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| May 07, 2017

nice article and helpful

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| Apr 23, 2017

A very helpful article

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| Apr 22, 2017

Agreed

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| Apr 22, 2017

very nice article.. thanks

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| Apr 17, 2017

impressive answer ...really...thanks parentune

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| Apr 11, 2017

nice article...

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| Mar 13, 2017

feeling relaxed after reading this

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| Feb 21, 2017

gd advice as I get some worthy suggestions

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| Feb 09, 2017

Good suggestions. Thank you

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| Feb 09, 2017

shyness usually appears in a nuclear family with one child. it can be reduced if there is an younger brother or sister by giving responsibilities

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| Feb 09, 2017

super thoughts

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| Feb 03, 2017

good advice

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| Dec 31, 2016

Thanks for the advice

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| Dec 13, 2016

very helpful article..

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| Dec 09, 2016

thanx for giving answer

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| Dec 05, 2016

Very helpful thnku so much

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| Dec 02, 2016

Good article, Thanks :)

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| Nov 30, 2016

Thanks

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| Nov 30, 2016

THANK YOU SO MUCH

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| Nov 24, 2016

Very helpfull thanks

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| Nov 19, 2016

thnks, this really helps me..... my child doesn't take any initiative in learning in his shyness...... ☺

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| Nov 18, 2016

also we face same situation.. thanks..

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| Nov 02, 2016

thank u very much.. I'm dealing with ds situation...

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| Sep 27, 2016

thanks a lot i will try

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| Sep 18, 2016

Thanks for the counseling. Its of great help.

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| Sep 08, 2016

Thanks a ton

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| Sep 08, 2016

Thanks Anurima! for sharing!!!

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| Aug 23, 2016

t hanks a lot.. my son too hv the same problem. very useful to how to overcome it..

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| Aug 15, 2016

helpfull

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| Aug 15, 2016

h

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| Aug 09, 2016

thank u very helpful..

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| Aug 09, 2016

Thank u so much for dis information. even my son is same n i was bit worried whether he will mix with others or not . after reading dis blog I m relaxed n i will definitely try out d tips u have suggested.

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| Jun 21, 2016

thank you

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| Jun 20, 2016

Very nice... thanks for sharing

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| Jun 20, 2016

Thank for the information.

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| Jun 19, 2016

Thank u so much.. it is very useful talk

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| Jun 18, 2016

very good information

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| Jun 16, 2016

Thank u very much for good tips

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| Jun 12, 2016

Well written ...Thanks for a help

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| Apr 23, 2016

Vry useful info for me.. And this also helps parent like me.. Thanks for sharing ..

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| Apr 23, 2016

Vry useful info for me.. And this also helps parent like me.. Thanks for sharing ..

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| Apr 22, 2016

Thanku for such a good article

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| Apr 22, 2016

Thank you very much it is very helpful for me

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| Apr 16, 2016

Nice n incredible

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| Apr 08, 2016

Nice information

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| Mar 04, 2016

Thanx

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| Mar 04, 2016

Very informative blog

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| Mar 04, 2016

Very helpful thank you

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| Feb 10, 2016

Good suggestion...

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| Feb 07, 2016

Useful blog.. Thank u

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| Feb 04, 2016

Hi This is true thank you for information

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| Feb 04, 2016

Very fine message thank you

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| Dec 16, 2015

Hi, my son is 5 yrs old and is in kg. He used to write nicly in class up until a few months back. They teach 2-3 letter words in english and hindi. But for last 4-5 months he has lost interest in writing. His notebooks are mostly empty or half written everyday. When I asked him why he does dat, he says he gets busy talking. Teacher has also stopped saying anything to him now. His is very sharp and active and knows his alphabets , words and theirs sounds. Good in mathmatical skills also. When I ask at home he tells correctly but his result was average in class. Main issue is he does not write in class. He is too unfocused. How do I deal with this? I have tried from making him understand to threatning him , shouting at him, punishing him but nothing seems to work. He just forgets all this when in class and now he starts crying rightafter reachin home and gives me all sorts of stupid explanations. Please help me if anybody knows a solution to this. I am really worried about him. Thanks Poonam

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| Dec 16, 2015

thank u really useful

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| Dec 16, 2015

Thank you very much.... Its very helpful.

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| Dec 15, 2015

very helpful

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| Dec 14, 2015

thank u very much.... very useful

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| Dec 12, 2015

Very useful tips

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| Dec 12, 2015

Very useful for me

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| Dec 12, 2015

A vry good article. my daughtr age 6yrs is quite shy. i hope the article definitely vll help me. thnx a lot.

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| Dec 11, 2015

I liked it nice article!!

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| Nov 12, 2015

Nice article.

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| Nov 11, 2015

@Faizal, evn my daughter was like tht until the age of 3. She usd to scream whnevr stranger usd to cm to our house or any in new placeShe become normal as time passed by. But still she is unable to adjust in the new surroundings, adults and strangers. I think we shd give thm time

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| Oct 06, 2015

My son is 3. 9 years. He is very playful but does not talk properly. He mostly repeats what we say to him. Even if he learns something at home he will not answer it when teacher asks those questions in oral tests. He would simply close his eyes and stand in front of them. I don't know if he is shy or scared of his teachers and strangers.

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| Oct 06, 2015

It is helpful artical

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| Sep 11, 2015

its very nice information..

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| Sep 07, 2015

Effective blog

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| Sep 04, 2015

such a nice blog,,, very helpful information to recover shyness... my son is also so shy in front of others but at home he is talkative... i face problem when he does not do in his oral exam.......

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| Aug 26, 2015

Useful information

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| Aug 26, 2015

Helo my 3. 5 years old daughter imitate other freinds.... Nd use bad language too.... She feel shy in front of other people.. what to do pls help me?.

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| Aug 26, 2015

Hi My name is reena and my son is 4 years old his very talkative at home but doesn't speak in class otherwise his very obedient and meticulous child... he showed shyness over there.. what should I do.

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| Aug 26, 2015

Hi,i liked d article very much. I m a mother of a 5yr old son. My son is normally interactive with us nd relatives,but he will not go nd mix up with d other kids in d appartment. I m so much worried nd dont know what to do. I hv to play with him,pls help me

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| Aug 26, 2015

my son is three and half years old, he doesn't utter a word in nursery, his teachers complaints that he doesen't play, laugh with other children's and sit's in one place. at home he talks with us. not clearly bt he talks. he also doesn't mingle with the outside people, when any body visits home he run to bedroom and sit der untill dey go or sometime he keeps crying. Is anybody facing the same issue or any advise to share.

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| Aug 25, 2015

Yeah u r rite We should not force them to be bold when they r actually anxious in a crowd rather we need to show that we understand their fear Thanks tht s a good message

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| Aug 24, 2015

Very Gud article thanks

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| Aug 23, 2015

Very good article

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| Aug 05, 2015

Hi all, few weeks back I also posted that my son not talking with new people and not talking in school. We went to counselling and we got advice from doctor to give occupational therapy we went to occupational therapy and also we spoke with school head master and class teacher about our kid based on advice given by occupational therapist. My son almost started talking with teacher and friends and new people. Infact, he made a public speaking session in his school which he did great. Parents advise you to consult doc and therapist because some times its easy to fix!!

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| Aug 03, 2015

very very nice blog , ishould change myself from shouting , then only i an bring my child like a perfect T , thanks i realized my mistake . nice blog

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| Aug 03, 2015

very very nice blog , ishould change myself from shouting , then only i an bring my child like a perfect T , thanks i realized my mistake . nice blog

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| Jul 24, 2015

Hi, I'm facing d same problem. My daughter is now 4+. She doesn't talk to people. She had limited friends n I'm trying frm last few months to talk her out so that she can make new friends, but not worked. N when I'm talking to other parents she doesn't allow me to talk to them. She began cranky. At school also, she talk to one or two of her friends. What should I do, pls help me.

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| Jul 23, 2015

Hii,,I m Also vry worried abt my son ,,Bcoz he vry scared in class room ,he is now three years old ,, he is not comfortable in class room ,,every morning he crying loudly,,I will nt go ,,and his grand mother spport him ,,give me suggestion deAr what can I do for my baby

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| Jul 22, 2015

Wonderful way To go further and nurture child's emotion's

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| Jul 22, 2015

Gud one... will try to implement

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| Jul 21, 2015

Vry nice and helpful

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| Jul 21, 2015

Great blog really helpfull for new parents

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| Jul 20, 2015

Thanx ,so much ..It is so appropriate. one of ma elder son is an introvert n doesn't open up easily ,not even to my other family members like sis or even me for that matter .I try to accept the fact but I get angry. I am complete extrovert .ppl around say a lot of things that subconsciously show on us. ill try n not push him

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| Jul 20, 2015

Very helpful

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| Jul 20, 2015

The upbringing plays a major role for your kid's shyness. So parents please keep a check on your short temper,yelling,shouting, etc.. All these can have a major impact on your kid.

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| Jul 17, 2015

very useful blog

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| Jul 17, 2015

Wonderful. Kind of education to parents.

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| Jul 17, 2015

Very useful n informative blog????

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| Jun 30, 2015

Amazing article. Thanks for providing valuable inputs.

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| Jun 29, 2015

Wonderful article. My son is 3. 5 years and he plays with everyone but whenever I am around, he keeps on clinging to me. He doesn't mix up easily with new people. He is okay with kids, but when it comes to grownups, he doesn't even smile or wave. I have tried explaining to him many times that you have to answer when someone asks you a question, but he never seems to understand. He would either keep smiling or turn his face. It is frustrating at times when he does this even to neighbors or familiar persons.

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| Jun 19, 2015

Nice article. My son also have some shyness. He don't speak in school and to new people. If tried he becomes anxiety. He just joined new school in I std. His class teacher concerned about his activity due to fiscomfort and looks she don't understand that complaining he is something wrong. Can I approach school teacher and principal to make them to understand the suitation ? I'm worried if things get worst. Suggestions please

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| Jun 17, 2015

I have an occationally shy son but I've realised that im responsible for it as I'm overly protective about him and personally an introvert when it comes to meeting new people. So it could be u and not the child who is shy.

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| Jun 16, 2015

If child is thinking all the time what should be done

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| Jun 16, 2015

Thanx its very useful...

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| Jun 16, 2015

Thanks a lot

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| Jun 01, 2015

thanx a lot

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| May 23, 2015

I m very happy to be a part of parentune. thnx for very helpful n informative blog

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| May 21, 2015

Nice blog. very informative

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| May 20, 2015

Thnkz for sharing.... this is quite helpful....

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| May 20, 2015

Very helpful tips and information

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| May 19, 2015

I am really thankful for this important blog and information as I am facing the same issues with my 5 years daughter. But now onwards I support my daughter for what she does and help to boost her confidence and public facing.

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| May 18, 2015

Very helpful article, I like it very much.

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| May 18, 2015

Very good information. Shyness can be improved with positive approach, social exposure and open discussion with child. With continuous efforts it can surely be changed at the right age.

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| May 17, 2015

These steps which are explaining here, I think could be work if we follow these steps as they are telling, for me this can be prove positive for any child of this sort. Thankyou very much for reminding these things which use to tell our grandparents about child behaviour.

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| May 17, 2015

Very helpful blog

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| May 17, 2015

Keep updating, thanks for info..

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| May 17, 2015

Nice article,really helpful for my child,

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| May 17, 2015

Nice article ?

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| May 16, 2015

Thanks very nice article...

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| May 16, 2015

Really informative.. Thx

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| May 16, 2015

Nice

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| May 16, 2015

Great information

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| May 02, 2015

Tks for dis article

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| May 01, 2015

She speaks loud at home & neighbour friend bt in school she speaks few words & very slow. With New surroundings she doesn't speak at all and always holds my hand

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| May 01, 2015

sharda Jha - Is this with her close friends as well or only with new surroundings and people? Anurima

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| May 01, 2015

Hi my daughter is 4 years old and she doesn't mixup with child even her classmates also. Only she made few friends. and she doesn't speak loud very slow ..suggest me what to do ?

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| Apr 28, 2015

Good article

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| Apr 25, 2015

Thanks for the article.. It wll help us a lot..

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| Apr 25, 2015

Nice article

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| Apr 24, 2015

My daughter is two years old.... and she scares a lot wid strangers and new environment.... she started crying ....pls suggest

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| Apr 24, 2015

Arunima really good to know tips suggested by you. My child is also shy and i am already trying most of that on my son.

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| Apr 24, 2015

Very good Info

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| Apr 24, 2015

hi arunima, really liked the blog... i am experiencing the same with my son. he was interested in learning drums, so we made him join drums classes, initially he was hesitant to go into the room but now he is so comfortable in the classes that he dose'nt even care that i am sitting outside waiting for him.

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| Apr 24, 2015

Hi arunima,

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| Apr 24, 2015

Nice blog..

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| Apr 23, 2015

Purva- a good starting point would be to help him by making a couple of friends

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| Apr 22, 2015

Hi thanx my son is very shy and i was always worried as to how will he deal i guess ur tips will help me.. However we r shifting to another place how do i help him adjust in his new school

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| Apr 22, 2015

Great help and it was comforting to read this

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| Apr 22, 2015

Nice blog.. Very positive way of handling this

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| Apr 22, 2015

Son is also very shy. These days he is even reluctant to go to school. I am a little upset wid dis change in his behaviour. he doesnt like his new class. !! Tough to make him understand dat he shoul make new friends.

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| Apr 22, 2015

Very nice blog. My 6 yrs old s

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| Apr 22, 2015

Really Helpfull

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| Apr 22, 2015

Hi Khushbu, you could ask your paediatrician for a sunscreen. these days very safe zinc-based sunscreens are available to use for children. also, once she is inside, wash her face with cold water and apply some aloe vera gel. very effective. i have tried with my own child.

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| Apr 22, 2015

Good blog i really like the article but only 1 problem hear the weather is too hot and my daughter always wants to go out for play and her skin is very sensitive when she go our in hot weather not only in sunlight even in evening she got very bad reshash on her face so pls tel me how to control her so that she play in home by own We have very small family just 3 members me my hubby and palak(my daughter) PLEASE give an article and give your CONTACT DETAILS so I can able to call you

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| Apr 21, 2015

Thanks for the useful tips at right time

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| Mar 30, 2015

Thank you for your encouraging comments dear parents :) Yes, it is true that each child is different and we need to give them the time to cope with a different surrounding.

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| Mar 27, 2015

I do agree every child is diff. ..... N d line abt designed childhood is so accurate..... We need to let them be themselves.... Really nice article.... Thnks

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| Mar 25, 2015

Vary nice and informative thanx a lot for sharing

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| Mar 23, 2015

Nice article...

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| Mar 23, 2015

Nice article...

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| Mar 23, 2015

Really good article... :):)

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| Mar 23, 2015

Nice blog Anurima, Thanks for it .My son who is Five year old now he is of same character,it takes some time for him to get set to the new environment ,people's everywhere. without me he will not even go down and play , this behaviour made me upset sometime, keep on saying and gave him his own time one fine day he started playing himself ,he made new friends and he s enjoying now..

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| Mar 23, 2015

Thks, very useful info

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| Mar 23, 2015

Definitely something than I as parent can work towards wading off shyness my kid and understanding her better. Helpful tips.

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| Mar 23, 2015

good blog for parents to accept their children's nature

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| Mar 23, 2015

good blog for parents to accept their children's nature

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| Mar 23, 2015

thanks for this informative & very helpful blog

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| Mar 22, 2015

There are multiple ways in which two children are different from each other perhaps more in number than their similarities. That's the most precious part.... diversity. not every child has to be an extrovert... won't it be beautiful if we let the innate diverse quality in each child bloom. Liked the blog a lot Anurima. Thanks for sharing it with fellow parents.

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| Mar 21, 2015

very nice blog.. very helpful for all parents also

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