• Keeping Friends

Teen Daughter With Not One Close Friend

Published: January 4, 2011 | Last Updated: November 8, 2021 By | 10 Replies Continue Reading
Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Her teen daughter doesn’t have one close friend and her mom thinks her outspokenness may be the root of the problem.


Dear Irene,

I read another post on your blog regarding a daughter who felt like an outcast. My own daughter was in tears last night because she does not have one close friend. She is the one to seek out the girls; they do not call her or ask her to hang out.

My daughter is beautiful and very intelligent. She is also very outspoken and I think that is what is costing her the friendships. She will call it like it is and holds her friends to high standards. She is not afraid to confront someone and tell them if she knows the person is lying or being too dramatic or whatever.

I overheard her talking to one of her friends and she was talking about how “Jen” was giving another kid a hard time. Jen was dissing the kid and my daughter stepped in and said, “Jen, it appears to me that you are the only one who has a problem with him. Why don’t you just let it go?” Jen is pretty much a diva and it took some guts to say something like that to her.

My daughter has told me about other times when she’s confronted her friends when she feels they are not being true to themselves. I am afraid her friends might think she’s a bitch because she’s very direct. My daughter holds herself to some pretty high standards and expects others to do the same.

How do I help my daughter without having her compromise who she is and what she believes in?

Mom of Lonely Daughter


Dear Mom of Lonely Daughter,

Being outspoken can have its benefits and drawbacks. Just because your daughter has strong opinions, which may in fact be correct, doesn’t mean that she needs to express them in ways that come off as hurtful or off-putting.

When she cries about having no close friends, use that as a teachable moment. Try to listen to your daughter and give her some honest feedback. You can praise how pleased you are at her high standards but help her see that not everyone will always meet them. You can also suggest some practical ways she can soften her style.

If you don’t feel comfortable doing this yourself (or vice versa), perhaps you could see if should like to have a few visits with a counselor or mental health professional. This is a great time to learn friendship lessons that can last a lifetime.

Hope this helps.

Warm regards,

Some recent posts on The Friendship Blog about teen friendships:

My daughter feels like an outcast

Talking to a teenage daughter about friendships

Painful teen friendship: what’s a mom to do?


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,


Comments (10)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Chris says:

    I have read all of these posts! Wow!!
    I live in a town where there are not any teen social groups available. My daughter has been seeing a counselor for a year now and it has done nothing for her social anxiety/low self esteem issues. I do think she enjoys talking to someone who is neutral, that she can complain/or explain about all the pressures she feels day to day. I wonder how us moms ever grew up with out a ton more issues and the moms before us and so on. I think we as moms need to be addressing the real problems of our daughters lives.
    First and largest problem their cell phones. Think of their phone as the problem and all the other things that happen to them that upset them as things that revolve around the earth:Cell phone. I think that their phones/iPods, iPads, computers whatever other electronic bunch of crapnwe get /give them is the source of our daughters troubles. I’m not saying mean girls would disappear or there would be no bullying or drugs/alcohol whatever else. I am saying its public enemy number one. Until we as a society acknowledge this point we are going to continue the free fall we are in. More social anxieties, social issues, non communication, more introverts.
    The list goes on. I have been turning my daughters off during school on for 1 hr. On again after dinner for awhile if homework and studying done. She is ten times happier and she is back to sitting with the family. ? moms let’s bring our kids back out of their bedrooms. Get rid of the reasons they want to be in their in the first place. Tv, computer, phone, game system. This are priveledge and not rights. At the end everyone will be happy at first it will be an adjustment but you will get the benefit of getting to know your kid again.

  2. Holly says:

    I have a 14 year old daughter who is really struggling with making and keeping friends. As a parent, this is heart breaking. I know HS can be brutal. I’m trying my best to try and keep her upbeat and happy, but lately it feels like she is sinking more and more into a deep depression. I’m starting to really worry about her. I’ve tried to plug her into social events, try and get her to invite friends over, and nothing. I’m wondering if she was picked on in middle school. She’s never mentioned anything too me. But I can’t think of any other reason why someone so loving and amazing can have such little self confidence. I don’t know what to do at this point. I’ve tried to talk to her, tried to get her to open up but it’s like talking to a rock. She’s stone cold and won’t even respond half the time. Any helpful advice is much appreciated.

  3. Lauelle says:

    Hi I’ve just found these posts on a Google search. I’m tryin to help my 13year old daughter, she is really struggling with her friendships. At the moment she is on her summer holidays, it’s the 4th week in & she’s met only twice with friends 🙁 she’s a keen social media fan and will chat well online to them, but meeting up and having friends over never really seems to happen. She will offer to
    Meet them & invite them, but they are always too busy, or so they say… Often seeing each other and leaving my daughter out.
    She did go though bullying last year, y7 was fine, she was so happy at school was making
    Lots of friends etc doing very well in lessons, but y8 all that changed. My daughter can be very sensitive, but she’s fair, kind and huge animal
    Lover even raising money to help them, she has such a kind heart… All I can put it down to with the friendship is jealousy? My daughter is very beautiful, striking even, we have comments all the time
    From strangers.. She did a little Modelling, but is not in the slightest boastful about it, in fact more
    Likely the opposite, shy & self conscious…. I’ve put it down to the girls In her year… Since being at scho
    Here her confidence has been shattered and she is becoming more & more isolated.
    Can anyone offer any advice? I’m
    Trying my best to support her in anyway possible.
    She doesn’t have the confidence to join outside clubs alone. 🙁 please help.

    • Amy F says:

      Hi Lauelle,
      I’m sorry your daughter is struggling. It must break your heart.
      In my opinion, blaming other kids isn’t a helpful strategy and is disempowering, because your daughter can’t change other people, she can only change herself and her reaction to them.

      She isn’t connecting with her current school friends this summer, so seeking out other sources if social stimulation seems like the best solution to find interaction.

      Are their kids in her neighborhood, even if they are older or younger, who she can spend time with?

      Can she babysit or be a mother’s helper? Kids are great ego boosters.

      Can she volunteer at a local animal shelter, walking dogs or giving the animals one in one attention?

      Would she consider day camp?

      Do you have friends with kids her age for a mom/kid outing?

      During school she can focus on making some different friends who are more interested in spending time socially.

  4. Dyla says:

    Hi everyone.I have read all the post that you all have written.I am so happy that moms nowadays would stood up for their children.I guessed time have changed a lot.Actually I am a 16 year old reader and a blogger too.In my situation,i did not get bullied in verbally or physically.It is always the same situation where there will be a group of teen girls ruling the whole school.Yeah so they will always chose those whom they like only.To be honest they cannot stand other girls who are prettier,smarter and more talented than them.Although i am quiet and shy girl,i do still have feelings.They always outcast girls like me who are ugly,fat and more.But reading all the posts and comments that you have written have shown me how to be a better person.The tips that you all have shared made me into a positive person.Well i just have to ignored people comments and go on with life.Last but not least Changed for the better not for the sake of people.
    Feel free to post more.I love reading it! Thanks a lot! 🙂

    P/s:Click my name,its my blog page.feel free to read.The topics are at the right side. 😉

  5. Anonymous says:

    My daughter is intelligent, sensitive and direct. She is naturally happy and can be great fun and get on with others. She’s 15 and for the last two years has being hanging out with a group of girls from school. The ringleader of the group has decided that she is to be dropped from the group and using very subtle ways has influenced the others to go along with this, This other girl is very spoilt and always gets her own way. There are no limits on what her parents buy for her. She has never being refused a request in her life. All the others give in to her. My daughter did stand up to her over her treatment of another girl. She is the first to do this and because of this the ringleader girl wants her gone. The girl she defended was supportive for awhile but has since merged back into the group. My daughter is distraught and unable to focus on her studies. She has tried to talk to the girl but to no avail. I also contacted her parents because of texts she had sent, but it seemed to make matters worse. What can I do now?

  6. lovette says:

    Your Daughter Seems To Be Smart and is Very “WISE”. It’s Good That She Will Stand Up For Herself ‘N For Others As Well. Being Truthful, ‘N Honest May Not Always Work in Your Favor. Since Everything U Think U Cannot Speak It, Maybe Somethings Is Better Left UnSaid, your peers See’s U As just Another Kid Like Them. When U Have Something To Say That Might Embarrass Some One U Might Want To Speak With Them in Privacy. Always Be Careful at How U Deliver Your Message If U Want To Be RESPECTED ‘N To Be Liked. Messagers, Savers, ‘N Helpers Are Always Hated Upon. Never Ever Comprimose Who U Are, Just Try To Find A Common Ground So U Can Be A Friend. Don’t Worry U Will Find Your Way With This Whole Friendship Thang, “BEYONCE” Did, She Rose To The Top.

  7. Katrina says:

    I see. At first before i finished the first statement, i thought this daughter is too quiet and awkward, but seems it is the opposite! Yes I’ve also been angry with some insensitive girls like that, but nobody expresses they dislike them.

    It’s ok not to be called or abandoned. Many of us face this issue at some time or other. I have felt like this too. Normal!
    Perhaps she could attend some kind of personality workshop like Disc profiles, could learn about how to deal with people.
    Accept that some things cannot be changed.

    And I used to hold people to high standards too, hence it’s always best to lower the expectations. I’m much happier now without expecting my friends to be perfect. They are also not always available for me.

  8. Sophie says:

    Is it possible daughter learned the communication style from mom? In that case, perhaps it can be a shared effort to recognize and soften their styles together. (And I say this as someone who has a similar problem. I’m a blurter.)

  9. chimera says:

    Sometimes the best policy is to keep quiet. When I hear something negative about another person, I always first think to myself what caused the person to say this or that, and then start forgiving them for saying it.

Leave a Reply