My son has used up all his screentime and he is wandering around the house. He is wandering around the house moping. And dragging his feet. And sighing heavily. I wait for it...and then he finally releases the statement I've been waiting for: "Mooooommmm...I'm bored."
Of course you are.
I ask him to check his list. (Of course we've made a list. We're list people.) I ask him to check the list of things he could do when he is bored. He refuses. He is too bored to even look. He is moping upstairs now. Loudly.
Often when my son tells me that he is bored, I wonder if he is really just lonely. So I offer to play a game with him. (This is the number one item on the list, by the way: Ask someone to play a game with me.) He immediately perks up, runs to the game closet and is Ready. To. Play.
We play (he wins) and afterward he runs upstairs to build stuff in his room. And that is what makes me think he was more lonely than bored.
As an only child, I know my son gets lonely. And part of my job is to make sure he knows how to deal with that. This is especially important as I see that more and more young people are experiencing loneliness these days.
Everyone should know how to deal with being lonely. And while this will probably be easier for an only child like my son, I imagine it is hard for children from larger families to understand. But, the truth is that loneliness strikes everyone.
What do you do when you are feeling lonely? Tell me in the comments.