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Although lessons and training may help peers of children with autism, bullying is still a major concern in social situations.According to Anahad O'Connor of The New York Times, bullying is most likely to occur against children with autism spectrum disorders who have the most potential to live independently.

Findings indicated that adolescents were less likely to engage in problem behavior when their friends did well in school, participated in school activities, avoided drinking, and had good mental health.

Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may have difficulty forming and maintaining friendships, due to a limited ability to build social skills through observational learning, difficulties attending to social cues, and because of the social impacts of impulsive behavior and a greater tendency to engage in behavior that may be seen as disruptive by their peers.

In a 2007 review, no treatment was identified which effectively address peer functioning in children with ADHD, and treatments which addressed other aspects of the disorder were not found to eliminate issues related to peer functioning.

Certain symptoms of autism spectrum disorders can interfere with the formation of interpersonal relations, such as a preference for routine actions, resistance to change, obsession with particular interests or rituals, and a lack of social skills.

Children with autism have been found to be more likely to be close friends of one person, rather than having groups of friends.

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