FMP2-RESEARCH—-ABOUT SENSE OF SOLITUDE—-CHILDREN

by sauly0515

I will design five presents for five different people, I will make an investigation for children/students/adults/seniors, sources of their loneliness, or when they will feel alone, their stories of lonely.

Cause most children’s loneliness problem

It has long been argued that social withdrawal in early childhood is a risk factor for later social motional difficulties. However, in recent years, researchers have begun to make distinctions between types of social withdrawal in young children, including shyness, social disinterest, and social avoidance. In this article, we review the literature on multiple forms of social withdrawal in early childhood. In particular, we focus on

(a) theoretical and empirical distinctions between shyness, social disinterest, and social avoidance; (b) links between these constructs and children’s social and nonsocial play behaviors with peers; and

(c) implications for children’s psychosocial adjustment. As well, we provide suggestions for future research, particularly on the relatively understudied construct of social disinterest and the virtually unexplored phenomenon of social avoidance.

SHYNESS

Shyness is the most often studied form of social withdrawal and refers to wariness and anxiety in the face of social novelty and perceived social evaluation (Rubin & Coplan, 2004). There is strong conceptual overlap between this shyness and the broader term “behavioral inhibition,” a biologically based temperament trait referring to reactivity and negative emotion in the face of novelty (Kagan, 1997). Extremely shy children are thought to have a lower threshold for arousal in the central nucleus of the amygdala and demonstrate increased heart rate acceleration to mild stress, higher early morning levels of salivary cortisol, and patterns of electroencephalogram (EEG) responses characterized by greater right frontal activation (Fox, Rubin, Calkins, & Schmidt, 2001).

Shyness is moderately stable (particularly among extreme groups) from early childhood through adolescence. In social milieus, shy children rarely initiate contact with available playmates and instead tend to withdraw from social interactions (e.g., Coplan, Prakash, O’Neil, & Armer, 2004; Ladd & Profilet, 1996). More specifically, during free play with peers, shy children display reticent behavior, which includes watching other children (onlooking) and being unoccupied (Coplan, Rubin, Fox, Calkins, & Stewart, 1994). For example, Henderson, Marshall, Fox, and Rubin (2004) reported that temperamentally shy, inhibited, and socially wary toddlers (aged 24 months) were more likely to display reticent behavior during free play in the laboratory at age 4 years (see also Coplan et al., 1994). Shyness has also been found to predict reticent behavior on the first day of preschool (Coplan, 2000) and several months into the school year (Coplan, Prakash, et al., 2004).

Results from a growing number of studies have linked shyness to maladjustment across the life span (particularly internalizing issues). For example, in the preschool years, shyness is related to poorer social competence, lower self-esteem, anxiety, peer rejection, increased teacher attention, and academic difficulties (Coplan & Prakash, 2003; Coplan). During later childhood and into adolescence, shyness is associated with loneliness, social anxiety, lower self-worth, and the use of fewer positive coping strategies (Eisenberg, Shepard, 1998). Moreover, extremely shy children are at increased risk for anxiety disorders (particularly social phobia) in later childhood and adolescence .

Accumulating evidence suggests that shyness is a greater risk factor for boys than girls. Shyness in girls is more likely to be rewarded and accepted by parents (e.g.Richters, & Wilson, 1988). Moreover, shy boys in preschool display more behavior problems and are more likely to be excluded by peers than shy girls (Coplan, Prakash, et al., 2004; Gazelle & Ladd, 2003). Throughout childhood and adolescence, shy and socially withdrawn boys continue to display greater adjustment difficulties than shy girls, including more loneliness, poorer social skills and coping strategies, and lower self-esteem (Eisenberg et al., 1998).Rubin and Coplan (2004) suggest that these findings reflect a greater social acceptance of shyness for girls than boys in Western cultures.

FUTURE DIRECTIONS

Moreover, many “big questions” remain virtually untested empirically. For example, how might different motivations and underlying mechanisms for social withdrawal interact and influence each other over time? Recent work by Schmidt and colleagues with adults and children suggests that the combination of high shyness and high sociability might be particularly problematic. Moreover, by middle childhood, perhaps it does not even matter anymore “why” children are socially withdrawn. Rubin and Asendorpf (1993) speculated that shyness and social disinterest would essentially become “merged” in middle childhood and would both be associated with similar indices of maladjustment. Finally, there has been some cross-cultural work on the potentially different meanings and outcomes of shyness, particularly in China (e.g., Chang et al., 2005; Chen, Cen, Li, & He, 2005; Chen, Rubin, Li, & Li, 1999). Other forms of social withdrawal might also have different meanings in other cultures. Chen (in press) speculates that although shyness may be viewed more positively in China, social disinterest (i.e., a preference for solitude) would be interpreted as a particularly negative trait, as it would be in direct contrast to collectivistic goals. Of course, it remains to be seen if different forms of social withdrawal even exist in other cultures.

We must continue to explore both the negative and the potentially positive implications of solitude in childhood. It would appear that extremely shy children might benefit from targeted intervention programs designed to reduce social fear and anxiety and promote competent social interactions. In contrast, social disinterest may not be the cause for significant concern, particularly in younger children. Social avoidance may warrant concern, but empirical studies are needed. We are hopeful that subsequent research will continue to help clarify when it might be acceptable to “leave a child alone.”

I would like to describe a child’s story, think about her loneliness, she when feeling lonely, I used hand-drawing this story, I’ll be making a gift to the child, hoping to ease her loneliness, like the video, easy, fun, kid easy to understand.

  • Chen, X., Rubin, K. H., Li, B. S., & Li, D. (1999). Adolescent outcomes of social functioning in Chinese children. International Journal of Behavioral Development,23, 199–223.
  • Coplan, R. J., & Armer, M. (2005). ‘Talking yourself out of being shy’: Shyness, expressive vocabulary, and adjustment in preschool. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly51,20–41.
  • Eisenberg, N., Fabes, R. A., & Murphy, B. C. (1995). Relations of shyness and low sociability to regulation and emotionality. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology68, 505–517.
  • Morison, P., & Masten, A. S. (1991). Peer reputation in middle childhood as a predictor of adaptation in adolescence: A seven-year follow-up. Child Development,62, 991–1007.
  • Rubin, K. H., & Coplan, R. J. (2004). Paying attention to and not neglecting social withdrawal and social isolation. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly50, 506–534.
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