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  1. #1
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    Default the uninterested child

    A bit HR....

    My niece seems to have no interest what so ever.
    a bit of fashion and nail painting, that's it.

    My mom (she is the guardian, long story) has tried to get her into music, dancing, riding, nothing.

    My late sister was similarly oriented, but horses were her obsession. Always.
    In theory my niece would have a horse at her disposal, but since my sister passed the horse was given to a relative, mostly because my niece had no real interest. (the gelding would have been a suitable mount even though the smallish child would have been well served with a parachute! )

    She does not do well in school and is more interested in the gadgets the other kids have (and Grandma loathes)

    Th other animals are well loved, but not object of a greater desire.

    How can you spark interest in a child that seems to have no interests?

    I think it is hard for us to comprehend that somebody has no urges in life since we all have our passions.
    Sis was obsessed with horses, while I am mere passionate about them
    My dad was into horses and still manages the small racing club, my mom has been passionate about learning new things, about doing, creating things.

    Can you oversell ideas?
    My niece had a pony since she was maybe 2 years old (though I think it was my sister's toy more than anything).
    Kind of reminds me of the my cousin and his kids: for the first time in generations the horse gene is skipping a generation. Both of his kids are not into them, even though they have the opportunity, and judging from the box full of barbie horses it wasn't for a lack of trying on the parents part!

    how can you spark interest in something, even if it is sculpting with potato salad....
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.


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  2. #2
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    Keep exposing her to different things and *stop pushing*!!! So typical of teens/preteens that the more *you* like something, the less they will! I used to play a game with myself when I took my sons clothes shopping - if I said I liked something, would they buy it? Never once, in many years, did they buy what I liked.

    The more your mom says she hates electronics, the more the niece will love it!

    Stop pushing and see what happens!


    10 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Is your niece depressed? How long has Mom been gone? Is her dad in the picture? Was he ever in the picture, and did he leave/was forced to scram?

    If she's really not interested in anything at all my first thought is she's got something else occupying her brain.

    If she's interested in gadgets perhaps you could give her something like a raspberryPI to play with and see if that takes hold. Just a thought. "Hey, Dawg, I saw you liked gadgets..."
    "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings


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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by littleum View Post
    Is your niece depressed? How long has Mom been gone? Is her dad in the picture? Was he ever in the picture, and did he leave/was forced to scram?

    If she's really not interested in anything at all my first thought is she's got something else occupying her brain.

    If she's interested in gadgets perhaps you could give her something like a raspberryPI to play with and see if that takes hold. Just a thought. "Hey, Dawg, I saw you liked gadgets..."
    It's been going on 5 years now since my sister died. The girl was 7 at the time.
    Dad is in the picture. I think he has grown into the role in the last few ears, but in the beginning he was, well, lets just say there was a stretch when he had to stay away lest Sis would bite his head off and gut him with a rusty hoof pick. Mostly her doing, not his.

    I think I will suggest counceling to my Mom, although she is a trained professional, I guess it has to be a stranger on the other end.
    My mom was never one to push us into things and I doubt she is now, except of course in terms of school and home work.

    The gadget thing is right now also a matter of safety. A friend of hers loaded an app for the cellphone that let them chat with somebody. My mom overheard them talking to a man whom they by all accounts did not know.
    I wish i was closer, I would be the harda$$ and put a stop to it. But alas, I can only point out the dangers to my mom, who, for some reason chooses to stay offline, though she had been computer literate in the past.

    I let her play World of Warcraft when I was over there a couple of years back (since she did not understand english it wasn't a real risk at the time ) but I don't think I can swing two accounts, not to mention the gaming world is really no place for a preteen, let alone a naive girl.

    There was the idea kicked around that she would come to stay with me for a while. I already made it clear, she would be joining either band or choir she said cheerleading, but not no, but HELL NO
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.


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  5. #5
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    Out of curiosity, why not cheerleading? If you pick the right place, it might be a good outlet for her. If you're not a fan of the school's program, check out local all-star gyms or rec programs. We're actually looking at letting oldest son cheer (he's 7). He loves watching the stunts and tumbling, and it'll be good for him to learn hard work/goal setting.


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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyssMyst View Post
    Out of curiosity, why not cheerleading? If you pick the right place, it might be a good outlet for her. If you're not a fan of the school's program, check out local all-star gyms or rec programs. We're actually looking at letting oldest son cheer (he's 7). He loves watching the stunts and tumbling, and it'll be good for him to learn hard work/goal setting.
    It gives me hives.



    But in seriousness, I think music has greater benefits.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.


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  7. #7
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    Why don't you try to get her involved in something where she can spend her time with kids her own age? Soccer, dance, girl scouts, etc. Having a social group that is centered around a common activity is really important to kids that age (actually it's pretty important to people of all ages).

    As a kid I used to think that the best thing in the world was spending time with horses, and hanging out with the other same-aged kids at the barn was just gravy. It wasn't until I left that barn and started mostly riding on my own that I finally understood the importance of the social aspect of riding. I now make a sincere effort to ride with other people as much as possible, and my best rides always take place when I have friends around.

    Horseback riding may or may not be her thing, but I'm sure she'll be much happier when she finds an activity where she can "belong" with her peers.


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  8. #8

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    Kinda sounds like she does have an interest--just not one you happen to like.


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  9. #9
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    Default

    Agree with JCS. She had an interest, it was shot down. Perhaps she now fears no one will approve of what she really wants to do.

    I loathe cheerleading as much as the next tom-boy, but I still did it for a year. Why? Lots of my friends had signed up; it had nothing to do with pom-poms and bloomers. Can't tell I'm any worse for the wear, and it might of even given me a dose of rhythm.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alagirl View Post
    It gives me hives.



    But in seriousness, I think music has greater benefits.
    I agree with music and the cheerleading but you can't force her to like it if it's not her thing. Let her try cheerleading and maybe she will move on to something else.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCS View Post
    Kinda sounds like she does have an interest--just not one you happen to like.
    Quote Originally Posted by dags View Post
    Agree with JCS. She had an interest, it was shot down. Perhaps she now fears no one will approve of what she really wants to do.

    I loathe cheerleading as much as the next tom-boy, but I still did it for a year. Why? Lots of my friends and signed up; it had nothing to do with pom-poms and bloomers. Can't tell I'm any worse for the wear, and it might of even given me a dose of rhythm.
    LOL, cheer leading is not available where she lives. Not to mention that she has no idea how physical the activity really is. remember: No sports.
    and chatting, tweeting and facebooking is not something 11yo need to be doing.

    The search continues.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.


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  12. #12
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    Its not all bad. Riding is a dangerous, expensive sport.

    Is she maybe a crafty kid? LMEqT had this hidden side that goes wild at the idea of glue guns and wreaths and beads and .. Omg. Yes, she does. Which is better than cheerleading (I get your hives) but if she wanted to cheer (shudder) I would sell the ponies and buy pom poms. Gulp.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alagirl View Post
    It gives me hives.



    But in seriousness, I think music has greater benefits.
    Sounds like she does have interests, just not ones you want.

    If she wants to cheer, what's the harm?


    16 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
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    I, too, don't understand the idea that apathy is cool. I mean, a good Existential Abyss Show of Ennui can gain a tween some milage for a while. But when the curtains close and you have no audience? Then it gets boring.

    So you have to model for kiddo *how* to have enthusiasm. That's in general, not for the thing you like.

    And then you must follow her leads. If she wants to do girly potato salad sculpture, you must be willing to get gung-ho about that with her.

    Oh, and I think forced family marches are fine, too. As in "We are going to a cut-ur-own christmas tree farm. You are welcome to hate it, but you are coming sans gadgets."
    The armchair saddler
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  15. #15
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    Cheer leading is a physical activity where she will meet girls her own age in a different avenue than just school, which may make it easier to be friends. I cheerlead for a year at my mom's request... I was awful and was the first "extra" they ever had in their 30 year history (competition team) but the girls there were nice. I tried the flute but really hated it, kept up with it for a year though. My passion has always been horses.

    I don't mean to be critical but... you worry she is apathetic, she tells you an interest and you shoot it down. Not helpful and really not fair to her, it needs to be her choice and she made one. At this point if she told you she wanted to complete at Chinese checkers you should go for it.

    Remember plenty of people think horses are a dumb hobby but we still do it. Give it a shot... unless it has changed a lot since I did it (14 years ago) it is a legitimate sport and not Toddlers and Tiaras style.

    Good luck!


    19 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alagirl View Post
    LOL, cheer leading is not available where she lives. Not to mention that she has no idea how physical the activity really is. remember: No sports.
    and chatting, tweeting and facebooking is not something 11yo need to be doing.

    The search continues.
    You could find a cheer/dance school and do a few lessons, martial arts studio and do an introductory class, a crafting/art class, photography class, etc.

    She may HATE all of it, and that's okay. At least she will know what she doesn't like and is learning that exploring different things without commitment is okay. Many preteens and teen "hate" everything until they actually try it, especially if a same-sex authority figure is the one suggesting it.

    And a passion for fashion, reading, painting toenails, or whatever is perfectly okay too, as long as it's part of a decently well-rounded life.


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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by EqTrainer View Post
    Its not all bad. Riding is a dangerous, expensive sport.

    Is she maybe a crafty kid? LMEqT had this hidden side that goes wild at the idea of glue guns and wreaths and beads and .. Omg. Yes, she does. Which is better than cheerleading (I get your hives) but if she wanted to cheer (shudder) I would sell the ponies and buy pom poms. Gulp.
    Awesome. The bolded deserves more than just a thumbs up.


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  18. #18
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    Dang. I understand where you are coming from on that one. My Fiancee's daughter is 17 but is going on 14. She was molested from 2yr til 10 and she did not tell anyone until she was 14yrs old. She told the school guidance counc. and we found out from the guidance. We have been trying to get her interested into something but have failed. We have tried to get her help and she refuses it also. Now it is hanging out, facebook and the social outlets instead of putting her energy into something else
    *^*^*^
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  19. #19
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    How about gymnastics...you need tumbling skills for cheerleading.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant


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  20. #20
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    OP, PM me. I'd be happy to help scout out cheer gyms local to you


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