03-29-2023 08:52 AM - edited 03-29-2023 10:22 AM
My daughter (Year 8 - has Anxiety) has been unable to attend school for the past 6 weeks. This was triggered by a conflict with a friend, leading to anxiety attacks before school, then School phobia/can't. We've been in constant contact with the school, worked with some of the teachers etc. She has seen psychologists in the past but is very reluctant to resume counselling as talk therapy doesn't seem to help (her thoughts). Over the past week she's started attending half-days but has been displaying negative behaviour in class - walking out, rude to teachers etc. I feel this is part of her anxiety; when she is feeling scared her reaction is to get angry. The school has deemed this behaviour unacceptable and she's received numerous detentions. There is a 'Wellbeing Centre' and she has a pass that allows her to leave class, but she says she doesn't feel safe there. This is leading back to refusal of going to school. Not sure where to go from here. (Sorry about the essay).
03-30-2023 04:25 PM
Hi @PachaMama ,
I am really glad you found the RO forums as it sounds like you and your daughter have been through a lot, especially over the last 6 weeks. From what you have said, it appears that the conflict your daughter experienced with the friend was a tipping point that led to her refusing to go to school. It must have really concerning to learn of how out of character your daughter has been at school over the last week as well. I am curious about the status of your daughter's friendship now and whether there are any other sources of peer support that she has? It sounds like you have been doing everything within your power to facilitate your daughter getting her education whilst also supporting her with her mental health. This can be a tough balance to strike as one can impact the other for a young person experiencing anxiety. Have you both found that anything that has worked in the past with your daughter's anxiety that may be worth re-implementing? We have some resources around supporting teens with anxiety here that may helpful.
I am also mindful of the impact all this must be having on you as well. Do you have anyone you can connect with about this as well? We do have a coaching programs for parents that might be worth having a look over for a bit of extra support right now.
03-31-2023 07:50 AM
03-31-2023 12:47 PM
Thank you for sharing this with us. I'm sorry to hear that you have been experiencing this and it is very understandable how distressing this must be for you.
I was wondering if you have any supports available during this time for yourself, along with what supports your granddaughter may have?
03-31-2023 01:07 PM
Thanks for your reply. It is really hard and good to chat with people going through the same thing. I hope your Granddaughter is ok, it's so hard to see loved ones like this. Behaviour definitely comes from somewhere and I know with my daughter it's her fear/anger response to her Anxiety. Good luck.
03-31-2023 04:58 PM
03-31-2023 05:11 PM
03-31-2023 07:28 PM
Thanks so much for the response. This RO forum is really helpful, it's just good to know there are others experiencing similar things and there is support out there. My daughter has made peace with the (ex)-friend, and has good friends in other classes, so her peer support is ok. He fear is now based in the actual classroom, she says the teachers don't understand. The school has created an IEP and all her teachers have a copy but I believe some of them think we're using the 'Anxiety card' to get her out of class and schoolwork.
We do have strategies that work for my daughter when she's having anxiety attacks (the best is to get into a car, she listens to her music with headphones and we go for a drive). We're lucky that we live 3 streets away from school and I work from home, so if things are really bad she can escape for a while. Hoping she can finish out the term attending some school, and not getting too many detentions. I am worried that after 2 weeks on holidays she won't want to go back at all for Term 2.
04-01-2023 10:55 AM