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Picking up on social cues

At a Glance: Trouble Picking Up on Social Cues in High School

By The Understood Team

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If your teen has trouble picking up on social cues like facial expressions and tone of voice, it can be hard to connect socially with peers. Here’s what issues with social cues can look like in high school.

58Found this helpful
At a Glance: Trouble Picking Up on Social Cues in High School

During high school kids make giant leaps toward adulthood. Teens who have trouble with social cues can struggle with the subtleties of adult social interactions. Here’s how that can play out.

Overreacts or Underreacts to Others
At home: Your child doesn’t ask what’s wrong when a family member is sad or obviously having a bad day.
At school: Your child keeps asking a classmate if she’s upset about not getting invited to a party—even though the friend keeps saying she isn’t.
The issue: Showing or feeling empathy can be difficult for kids who struggle with social cues. They may not know when to express empathy and when to let things go.

Misreads How Others Feel About Her
At home: Your child thinks you’re always mad at her, even though it’s not true.
At school: Your child thinks another child who’s being rude to her is actually her friend.
The issue: Kids who have trouble with social cues often can’t perceive how others really feel about them.

Gets Anxious About Socializing
At home: Your child doesn’t want to go the family reunion because she thinks nobody likes talking to her.
At school: Your child isn’t involved in any clubs and avoids working in groups whenever possible.
The issue: Teens who struggle with social cues can be upset about their social skills issues. They may isolate themselves or become anxious or depressed.

Doesn’t See What’s So Funny
At home: Your child doesn’t laugh when someone tells a joke with a double meaning.
At school: Your child doesn’t understand when another teen is being sarcastic and responds in a serious way.
The issue: Kids who have trouble picking up on social cues often miss the nuances of humor.
Graphic of At a glance: Trouble picking up on social cues in high school
Graphic of At a glance: Trouble picking up on social cues in high school

About the Author

Understood Team Graphic

The Understood Team

The Understood team is composed of passionate writers, editors and community moderators, many of whom have children with learning and attention issues.

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Reviewed by Jenn Osen-Foss, M.A.T. Feb 12, 2014 Feb 12, 2014

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