Having a “shy” child is a HUGE CONCERN for many parents…
But we are all somewhere on the scale between extroversion and introversion, while each and every one is NEEDED in this world, and who said that being “shy” is a NEGATIVE character trait???!!
This is definitely the message we get from living in a culture, that glorifies being always bold and loud, but we certainly don’t have to comply with that! Think about all the wonderful qualities there are in more quiet and introverted people… They are usually more humble, unpretentious, deep thinkers, well-planned, cautious, enjoy and flourish in solitary work, calm and quiet (and therefore nice to spend time with), have very deep friendships (because they choose their friends one-by-one)… They often have a very rich inner world, a low voice, and will choose their words wisely – This requires us to LISTEN to them much more carefully.
In my office, the “shy parent” will generally tell me: “But I just don’t want her to suffer like I did…”. And I ask that parent to think about what would have helped him, when he was a “shy child”… Being endlessly criticized for being introverted, or maybe being accepted and adored for exactly who he is?
If your child is suffering from SAD, please do consult with a professional.
However, if your child is just shy or quiet, love and accept her UNCONDITIONALLY, and ENCOURAGE every tiny step for speaking up, joining the basketball team, saying hello to the neighbor, or asking for her favorite flavor at the ice cream truck.