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Group of teenagers sitting on floor near brick wallFriendships help us learn about ourselves and others. We learn how to be kind, caring, and how to deal with disagreements and take on others’ opinions.

If a child is struggling to make friends, or if they are having arguments, it can make them feel stressed and sad.

Many things cause friendships to change, from having an argument, to coping when a new person joins a group. Sometimes a friend starts to like new things or learn new hobbies, or they may move away. For young people, upsets with friends can bring up feelings of sadness, worry, anger and loneliness.

Families who might need further support

Some children and young people need find it harder to make friends as they have fewer chances to take part or socialise with their peers and so may have fewer friends and they may find it harder to understand or keep friends. Incredible kids has ten ways to encourage friendship in children with additional needs and has information on helping your autistic child make friends.

Useful information

  • Childline has some top tips for making friends at any age.
  • The Children’s Society has a guide to supporting young people with their friendships.
  • YoungMinds has some tips and advice about friendships.