Reports show that about 10-to-15 percent of all school children will suffer from separation anxiety at least once in their lives, but what statistics don’t show is the number of parents who go through separation anxiety as well, especially when their child enrolls in school for the first time.
Just because you’re an older mother doesn’t mean that you aren’t equally as affected when your pride and joy attends kindergarten. After all, finally going to school is a slap in the face that your little boy or girl is growing up. Not to mention, you can’t watch your child every second of the day and protect them like before. While what you’re feeling is normal, there are a few ways that you can “cope” and make yourself feel at ease every time you send your child off the school. That said, to learn a few coping mechanisms, continue reading below.
Create a Support System
One of the easiest ways for you to cope with your new separation anxiety is to find others who share your same sentiments—or at least find someone who has been in your situation before. Making friends with fellow parents is a great way for you to talk out your worries/fears and get some comfort knowing that everything is going to be ok in the end. Some great ways to make friends with fellow parents is to get involved with school-related activities as possible, which leads us to our next tip—
Volunteer at School
The more involved you are with your child’s school, the more likely you’ll become adapted to sending your child there every morning. Join the PTA or the booster club, volunteer to read to your child’s class if given the opportunity, try to chaperone field trips, advise bake sales and other school-related functions. Join your child for lunch occasionally. And most importantly attend school open houses and book fairs so that you can meet the school’s faculty and staff. You may not be able to attend everything, especially if you’re a working mother, but trying your best to attend some events can set you at ease and help you meet more fellow parents.
Talk About Your Child’s Day
Lastly, talking about your child’s day during the car ride home or at dinner for example can help you see how much your little one enjoys school and can in return help you feel better about the situation as a whole. Ask your child what lessons he or she has learned as well as what his or her teacher(s) is like. Also ask about new friends your child has made in school—or about any enemies. Helping your child be open about their school experiences from the very beginning can be extremely useful since he or she can reveal insider information. For example, maybe he or she is being bullied. You can nip the problem in the bud early on.
Does anyone else have any other useful coping mechanisms? Please share!
About the Author
Patricia Garza is an education writer for www.oedb.org. Although her specialty is in higher education, Patricia thoroughly enjoys covering primary and secondary-related topics as well. She encourages your comments.
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