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Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

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Casual scribe
MelorMel

Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

I have a 13.5yr old son who is now into a second term of school refusal, he does have anxiety and is seeking support from a physcoligist (grew up in a DV environment which we are away from now) the support from his school, physcoligist GP etc. has been amazing however my partner who is usually the softest soul just can not get his head around it all and says he is just defiant and needs strict punishment and boundaries until he goes back to school. My question is how do I get him to understand? Yes there is behavioural issues but there is alot of unlying issues that cause these behaviours that I just can't get him to understand? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. PS I have invited him to discuss this with health professional but his not open to the suggestion.

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MaryRO

Re: Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

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Hi @MelorMel,

 

It's so great that you have set your son up with appropriate supports as living through family violence creates a lot of trauma and the affects, unfortunately linger on well after the family violence has stopped. It's wonderful that you understand that supporting your son to get through this is very beneficial to him and it normally takes time to see the behavioural issues decrease. Would your partner speak to the psychologist about the impacts on teens who have gone through such experiences? It might also be worth reaching out youth worker/youth service or family violence worker who can explain the behaviours in teens. Below is some information for your partner to read. It sounds like that maybe your partner might benefit from speaking to a professional who deals with young people who have been in the same situation. It might be challenging for them to understand, particularly if they haven't had the same experience.


https://parents.au.reachout.com/common-concerns/everyday-issues/things-to-try-school-and-education/h...

https://parents.au.reachout.com/common-concerns/everyday-issues/domestic-violence-and-teenagers

https://www.thewholechild.org/parent-resources/age-13-18/parenting-tips-age-13-18/domestic-violence-...

https://www.thelookout.org.au/other-professionals/responding-family-violence/family-violence-and-chi...

Would your partner attend a parenting course to try and understand your son's development after his experiences? The school may be a great resource in linking you both in to attend such programs. It might also be useful for them to get advice from Kids Helpline https://kidshelpline.com.au/ or Headspace https://headspace.org.au/. Both organizations support children and young people and may be able to provide useful information on this topic. They can also speak to a counsellor and ask questions to clarify on how to support your son.

Hopefully, this is enough information for you both and you find the support you need.

Casual scribe
MelorMel

Re: Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

Hi MaryRo,

Thank you so much, I have asked him if he wanted to speak to the phycologist but was a clear no and I have linked in with a phycologist myself from a DV service who has suggested many strategies for me and my partner but the subject is too sensitive to implement on his behalf.
I am very greatful for the information, I think if I can show him this or even just comfortably talk about it without be defensive (which I can do) we might get somewhere. Dealing with a teenager is one thing a partner is another🤦‍♀️
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MaryRO

Re: Getting partner to understand Anxiety and school refusal

HI @MelorMel, yes you are right dealing with a teenager and dealing with a partner are very different things indeed. Sometimes partners do need a bit of time to understand this kind of situation. It's great that you have also been linked in with a psychologist for yourself. I can imagine that  there would be complex behaviours would be triggering for you. You will also need to look after yourself after what has happened. Family Violence is a very traumatic for everyone involved. 

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