In the last few months, more parents are increasingly worried about their teens and young people who are struggling. Some have anxieties any way and the teenage hormones kick in, others are distraught over the lockdowns and their lack of contact with friends and a social life.
Parents describe a range of issues to me: Displaying physical symptoms such feeling nauseous, stomach cramps, headaches, muscle pains, panic attacks and not sleeping or eating properly.
Personality changes – such as withdrawn, angry, frustrated or argumentative
Parents express how worried they are that school work was deteriorating, running battles with homework, not wanting to go to school. With the older ones not facing college or work, worrying they will not be able to pay their rent, car payments or enrol in a desired college course. Anxiety after anxiety stacks up
“We have taken them to the doctors and it’s not helped! Can you do anything? We are desperate now!”
“If I carries on like this they won’t pass their exams and then where will they be when they want a job or college place”
Here’s what one Mum wrote:
I’ve lost a year with my kids battling over school and I’m done.
My fourteen year old and I were in the midst of our usual asynchronous day battle. I had his writing homework in my hand from school. He’d written several full, well-thought-out paragraphs at school.
But he won’t do the same for me, at least not without a fight.
He said he’d get in trouble. He said he was doing a bad job in school. He was on the brink of tears but didn’t know why.
So what can be done?
Reach out for help! Let them share how they feel. Reassurance and understanding what is creating the physical symptoms is the first step to letting them go. Gradually unpacking the rucksack of issues and fears moves them on, restoring confidence, building self esteem and releasing social anxiety. With a look into the future and some tools to help themselves your young people can re- emerge with success and a positive future.