involved in some activities where she can be part of a team or group effort. You may also want to talk to the school guidance counselor.
Take care and that was a great question!
Please understand this reply is for information only and does not constitute treatment.
For most people, having a group of friends that are close is important. The number of friends and how much time we spend with them differs from person to person. There is a pretty wide range in what is "normal" for folks from having a couple good friends to the "social butterfly", who knows just about everybody and hangs out with their friends every day.
In some cases, a kid may not have many friends because of a recent move, change in school, or shift in interests away from where most of their friends were (left an organized sports team). With these shifts, it can take some time to develop a new set of friends. In other cases, a kid may have a couple close friends they see primarily at school, but who live far away, so are unavailable to come to the house outside of school. These friends may not be obvious to parents who don't spend the school day with their child.
These are different from the child who has not really had any close friendships for most of their life and seem uninterested in developing them. If your daughter is interested in friends, but doesn't know how to go about it, then structured social skills help through school or an outside therapist might be appropriate. Therapists and evaluating psychologists often try to determine whether social isolation is because of peer rejection or lack of interest from the child. These two situations are often approached differently.
Have you talked with your daughter about whether she has friends you aren't aware of and if not, whether she wants to make some friends? If she is not interested, it is usually hard to force this onto a kid and maybe not helpful. If the child expresses some interest, structured activities like sports, dance classes, or special interest clubs can put them into contact with kids who like the same things they do. Friendships may develop simply out of contact with peers who have similar interests.
Given that you have expressed worry about her seeming lack of friends, it may be appropriate for you to consult with a child and family therapist to discuss your concerns with a professional. If you chose to talk with a counselor, they might be able to help you determine whether the concerns are minimal or if some next steps could be indicated.
Todd Koser, Psy.D.
NJ & PA Licensed Psychologist