If you’re a parent the chances are at some point in time you have dealt with anxiety. Whether it be your child’s anxiety or your own, you’ve seen it. It takes many forms in different people. Today I want to talk about some of the ways that give parents anxiety and some of the ways kids exhibit the signs of anxiety.
I’m willing to guess that at some point in time you have had to entrust your child to someone else. Whether it’s a grandparent, babysitter, the child’s other parents, or even a teacher. It’s never easy as a parent to leave our precious babies in the care of someone else.
I once had a friend (let’s call her Mary) who started out as a single mom. From the day the child was born, the father was not in the picture. It was her and her baby girl taking on the world. Enter in her first case of major anxiety. How was she going to raise this tiny human on her own? How was she going to nurture her AND protect her? How was she going to provide for her when she couldn’t handle the thoughts of leaving her with someone else? I think you can see where this is going.
Not only was Mary facing the anxiety of all these questions, but she was also dealing with postpartum issues. It was like the perfect storm for a break down. Luckily, that didn’t happen. Mary decided to take control of her situation and get a handle on her anxiety naturally.
She started by using the time of her maternity leave as a way to find people she could trust with her child while she went back to work. It wasn’t easy and most of the time it was her mother. Things got easier when she would have to leave for work, but it was never “easy”. Mary mentally prepared herself each time.
Mary also took a stand and decided that she wasn’t going to let her circumstances control her life. She started by countering every negative thought she had with a positive thought. She meditated every morning. She took control of the things that gave her the most anxiety and found a way to battle them. And Mary sought the help of a qualified therapist during this tough time.
To this day, she is married and has the family she always dreamed of, but still gets anxiety when her little girl now goes to spend a week with her grandparents. It’s hard to hand our babies over to someone other than ourselves and trust that they will be okay. It takes some deep breathing, meditation, prayer, and oils to help her get through these types of situations.
Just like Mary, if you have anxiety about your parenting, it’s okay to seek qualified help. Find a therapist who can help you get through these hard times. Find someone who can help you develop ways to process your anxiety and deal with it. Because keeping it all bottled up inside only leads to more anxiety, possibly depression and isolation. Eventually you will explode.
When it comes to our kids, anxiety can present in many different ways. Did you know that a lot of times when a child has anxiety then won’t tell you they are anxious they will say. “My tummy hurts”? It’s true.
There is a medical link in children between chronic stomach aches and anxiety disorders. According to WebMD, John V. Campo led a study on just this issue. He found that “Primary care doctors can expect that about 80% of children who have chronic stomach pain will have an anxiety disorder — and that about 40% will also have depression.”(Related links, 1)
The same friend of mine, Mary, who struggled with anxiety related to parenting had a daughter who also struggled with anxiety related to school. She had a teacher who was a perfectionist and demanded that all the child be perfect too. This did not bode well for her daughter.
One night while Mary and her husband were talking in the kitchen after her daughter was in bed, her daughter came down the stairs and into the kitchen in a daze. She seemed like she was awake, but she wasn’t! She was babbling about different questions and answers. It was at that point Mary realized her daughter was sleep walking.
Because she didn’t want to treat her daughter with anxiety medication she sought out the help of an essential oils expert to try to find a combination of oils that could help her daughter relax while she slept.
After a few trial and error runs with a few different oils, they found a combination that worked. Not only did it work for her daughter, but the smell from the oils filled all the bedrooms of their home and EVERYBODY slept better. Her daughter has stopped sleep walking all together with the help of relaxation techniques at bedtime and essential oils.
*Essential oils are a great way to help calm the senses and anxiety. They are most effective when combined with relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or meditation.
Parenting is filled with many forms of anxiety, whether it’s your anxiety or your child’s. The most important thing that you can remember in these times is:
Find what works for you
The best approach is a natural approach
Find a qualified therapist who can help you
Research holistic ways of dealing with stress and anxiety
Don’t stop until you find what works