How can I help my 7th grader who has school anxieties and cries every morning while walking through the front door of school?
My daughter, when asked, does not know why she is crying every morning at school. She doesn't know what is bothering her but just doesn't want to be in school and this is affecting her grades and she is failing. I have tried to help her but am having no success with anything that I do or try to do.
"School Anxiety" can have several different causes:
1. It isn't really school anxiety, but anxiety about leaving home because of unrest at home (fighting, divorce, illness or something similar) and the child is worried that while she is away during the day, something 'bad' might happen and she won't be there to help take care of it.
2. Learning issues that sometimes get worse with the challenges of middle school and make school a stressful environment.
3. The beginning of depression which might be triggered by puberty, or a specific incident in her life.
4. Social difficulties that she is hiding from you.
5. General anxiety that may also be triggered by a specific incident, could be genetic or triggered by puberty.
It is important to figure out what is causing her to feel so anxious and sad so that you can get her the best help possible. I'd suggest that you do everything possible to NOT let her stay home during the process of figuring out the cause because the more is avoids school, the harder it will be to get her back.
Begin by speaking to her school guidance counselor or the school psychologist. Then you may want to get a referral to a private therapist to help you further.
Dr. Susan Bartell
JustAsk Expert www.drsusanbartell.com
NEW book! "The Top 50 Questions Kids Ask"