It is that time of year again. Yup, back to school! Parents are contacting me about their child’s anxiety around starting school. Some households are having typical childhood anxiety about school.
Such as wondering who their teacher is?
Will they have a friend in their class?
Is the teacher mean? Will they give a lot of homework, etc.
While other children are experiencing more extreme anxiety symptoms:
Increase in Arguing
These children may be worried about:
Are they safe? Is there going to be a school shooting?
Are their parents safe when they leave them to go to school?
Is anyone in the school going to take care of them if they have a need?
Will I throw up in front of the class?
Am I going to struggle again this year academically?
Are the other children going to tease me because I can’t spell or read on grade level?
Back to school stress isn’t just about the children. Your job as parents is to help assess whether a child’s anxiety symptoms are disruptive enough that they are affecting your child’s sleep, eating, mood, and interactions with the family. If so, it is time to call a professional such as myself. Most of the time children are not just acting out to act out. There are emotional reasons for these behaviors. Often times children are unable to verbalize to you what is worrying them and therefore, they show you something is wrong by acting out. That’s where I come in and help you and your child understand what is at the core of these acting out behaviors. For younger children play therapy is a way in to the child’s inner world so we can find out what is going on.
Do not waste another year being stressed. Do not waste another year of arguing with your child. Come in and work with me for more peace within your child and your family.
Stacey Shapiro, LCSW, RPT-S is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Registered Play Therapist Supervisor with 20 plus years of experience working with children ages 3 and above, teens, young adults and adults. She can be reached at 215-352-4400 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out her website at www.staceybshapiro.com