As a parent, all you want is for your child to be healthy and happy. So when those two things don’t seem to be the norm, it can be challenging to know what’s going wrong and how you can fix it. But with some things, you as the parent can’t just snap your fingers and make everything all better.
This is the type of situation people who have children with anxiety have to deal with each and every day. Luckily, there are some things you can try on your own that can help both you and your child better deal with their feelings. To show you how, here are three ways you can help your child suffering from anxiety.
Turn Your Focus To Management, Not Elimination
When there’s something that’s making your child scared or uncomfortable, it’s just in your nature as a parent to want to get that thing as far away from your child as possible. However, if your child has chronic anxiety, taking this action isn’t going to be doing your child any favors. According to Dr. Clark Goldstein, a contributor to the Child Mind Institute, you should focus more on trying to manage your child’s anxieties rather than eliminate them. This might mean keeping those stressors close by while trying to work through the fear or anxiety with your child. While this can be challenging at first, this will be much better for your child in the long run.
Set The Right Expectations
If you don’t personally have any experience with anxiety, it might be hard for you to understand what your child is going through. When this happens, you might see that your patience wears thin when their anxiety is high. So to make things easier on both of you, try to adjust your expectations. While WorryWiseKids.org shares that you should have the same basic expectations for your child with anxiety as you do with children without it, you should recognize that it might take an anxious child longer to accomplish certain things. But by setting the right expectations on both sides, you might find that things become easier to deal with.
Don’t Be Afraid To Speak To A Professional
While it’s perfectly normal for a child to be scared or nervous about some things, if your child’s anxieties are making it hard for them to function normally, Marisa Cohen, a contributor to Parents.com, expresses that you shouldn’t be afraid to speak to a professional or seek medical advice if you’re worried about your child. Someone who’s worked with lots of children with anxiety might be able to help your child a little better than you can on your own, and taking advantage of these resources is nothing to be ashamed of.
If you have a child with anxiety, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you both learn better ways to cope with these feelings.