Holidays can be a lonely time for children who feel they are missing out

One thing a lot of young people tell us about the summer holidays is that, while it is a welcome break from studying, they often miss the social interaction they get with their friends.

By Darren Worth
Saturday, 27 July, 2019, 10:00
Children can feel lonely during the holidays.

Six weeks can be a long time to spend apart from people you’re used to seeing on a day-to day basis, and I think this would be a challenge for any of us. This is also made worse by the fear of missing out, which I mentioned last week, and can often lead to the feelings of loneliness being exacerbated.

One young person told us: “It's the summer holidays. No more school for ages and that is a bad thing, in my opinion.

“School is what keeps me going.

“It helps me socialise and keeps me busy so my mind doesn’t dwell on negative things.

“I've gone out to see friends over the holidays quite a bit so far, and I have Skyped with them a lot, but I still feel really lonely because I am not seeing them as much as I did while I was at school.”

It’s important for young people to know that they’re not alone in feeling lonely over the summer. We have lots of calls, messages and emails from others who are going through the same thing all throughout the summer.

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We also have lots of young people discussing how they feel on our message boards, where they can find support and understanding directly from their peers.

There are also lots of ways that children can overcome feelings of loneliness over the summer holidays – whether that’s getting out and about, joining clubs and finding new ways of making friends outside of the school environment.

We know joining clubs isn’t possible for all young people, so we also advise looking at volunteering opportunities, or taking up a new hobby or sport to help pass the time and relieve the immediate sense of loneliness.

And of course our Childline counsellors are always there for any child or young person who wants to talk about how they’re feeling

For free confidential advice and support about any worries, children and young people can contact Childline on 0800 1111 or www.childline.org.uk