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Today, self-expression and communication are highly valued. Parents worry so quickly about the shyness of their child. Can we help his child to gain self-confidence? The advice of the editors.
What is shyness in a child?
- Shyness is a fear of the reaction of others, whether the child has confidence in him or not. A shy child, for example, makes films about what others might think of his words or his actions or attitudes.
Where can this shyness come from?
- It can have different origins. Some families are more shy than others, so a child can be shy by mimicry. On the contrary, a child may be shy because he has oversized parents, or brothers and sisters who occupy the whole place. Finally, some children have a deep feeling of being different, for example an early child may feel guilty about this success, a very small child can be locked on his complexes.
Being shy, can this be an asset?
- Yes, the shy are generally endowed with a great capacity of listening, sensitivity and a capacity of analysis of oneself and the world sometimes out of the ordinary. They are also often very loyal.
Why shyness bother us, parents?
- Because we live in a society that values social relations and demands more and more extroversion. So we want our children to be popular. As if the popularity testified to a good education. It is true that one can rejoice to have a child very appreciated by his comrades, but a child who has few friends, can be a child who selects, who does not fear to be alone. He is not necessarily unhappy.
How to distinguish between shyness and social phobia?
- One can think of social phobia, if for example the child closes like an oyster to the point of refusing the invitation to the birthdays of his comrades for example. Because it can lead to an internal malaise, an allergy in school and later difficulties in his adult choices.
How to help the child to overcome this shyness if it is a handicap?
- First, by valuing his qualities in the family, but beyond, we must look for ways to introduce him to self-expression, by offering him to discover an artistic practice such as photography, modeling, theater or team sports or scouting, which will bring him into contact. The theater can give amazing results. Very erased children often turn out to be great actors. The theater gives them small victories: to make laugh during a reply, it gives confidence in oneself and the desire to begin again. Working with your body, learning to relax, helps the child to acquire for his daily life a control of his body, his breathing, his emotion.
Are there things not to do?
- It is necessary to stimulate without rushing. For example, if a child is timid and fussy, he will not be registered for rugby. We will define with the child a series of situations that frighten him, to get him to face it gradually. For example, we will start by asking him to go to the neighbor for a small service, then to go buy the bread at the bakery, then to recite a poem aloud in front of his family ... Once accomplished these steps, will become great victories for the child.
As a parent how to behave well with a shy child?
- We must be careful not to overprotect him and not to convey to him the idea that the outside world is terrifying. Some topics, such as pedophilia, can lead to real inhibitions if they collide with the child's own fears and fantasies. We must therefore speak with caution, with measure.