Helping Your Child Make Life Transitions Easier
Change is a reality that most human beings will, at one time or another, have to contend with. Though change can be an unavoidable fact of life that may not make change any easier to deal with. The transitions that come with change can exact a heavy emotional toll on individuals, particularly children who may feel powerless when changes take place.
How Children Can View Transitions
If a change in residence is imminent, children can naturally feel sad about leaving their friends and everything they have become familiar with. For children, there be no consolation in being told that they will make new friends or that their new environment will have better places to go to have fun. When they anticipate being in a new school, they may feel anxious about how well they will do in their classes. Studies show that for some children, transitions can result in academic difficulties, decreased school attendance, poor motivation and/or a decline in self-esteem. Prolonged periods of distress may also lead to symptoms of depression and/or anxiety.
Paying Attention to Children’s Reactions
Children exhibit various reactions when they may feel that a transition is coming. Remember that quite often, children can know what is going on even before they are told. Some children may be openly resentful and will voice their objections clearly. If this is how your children are reacting, bear in mind that this can be both normal and healthy. Though these reacts can be healthy, if these behaviors persist they can impact functioning or lead to something more such as depression or an anxiety disorder.
Some children will not express their feelings overtly, but if your child becomes quieter than usual, you may want to be sensitive to non-verbal clues about his emotions. A good number of children will act out and/or be more troublesome than usual, while others might put up a brave front. All of these reactions can be expected from children who are confronted with change, though as a parent you may want to make the transitions as easy as possible for them.
The best way to help children face transitions may be to receive professional help. This is not a task that you have to accomplish on your own. As a parent and as an adult, you may be looking at the formidable challenge of making a transition and seeing the rest of your family through it. You may already feel isolated and overwhelmed at the prospect of all the adjustments that have to be made, and your children may be picking up on your emotions.
If you are in the midst of a transition and you think your family may need so additional support, call Carolina Counseling Services at Fuquay-Varina. Licensed, independently contracted counselors can help your children arrive at a healthier perspective of change and the positive things that can come from it. Your family deserves support during times of change and transition, call CCS today and schedule your first session.
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