Anxious seven year old. Help please!(1 Post)
My seven year old son seems to have an extremely anxious response to situations and I'm not sure how to help him. It really saddens me that he avoids doing things he really wants to do and then regrets it.
As an example the local lions club have a santa sleigh they bring round every year and the stop in several places around the village for the children to come and speak to santa and tell him what they'd like for christmas. He's been talking about it all week and saying how he can't wait to see him and looking forward to it, planning what he was going to say etc. The volunteers knocked on the door, he ran to get his coat and shoes on and walked up to where the sleigh was waiting. We got within about 50 yards and he stopped dead and said he didn't want to go.
We tried cajoling him, reassuring him and telling him we would stay with him etc and he got almost angry and then bolted up the road in the dark then ran across the road and home (he did check before crossing but knows he's not allowed to cross that road alone). It took us a couple of minutes to find him hiding near the house.
He was really stroppy so I put him in timeout to give him a chance to calm down. Talking to him when he's in that mood just makes it worse and some time alone seems to help him get himself back under control. When he was calm he seemed quite sad that he had missed out.
He's not generally shy, last year he played one of the main roles in the school play and was on stage, confidently saying all his lines etc. He speaks up in class and joins in well. He takes a long time to adjust to new situations and the keenness followed by complete refusal is a fairly regular reaction to things.
He does have some sensory issues - he's very sensitive to clothing textures etc and he finds noisy situations very stressful after a while.
DH and 16yo DS both have Asperger's. DS7 seems not to have the social difficulties and comprehension issues that DS16 has. I have (sometimes crippling) social anxiety but I force myself to do things so that the boys get social experiences. I can see a lot of my anxieties in DS7 and I'd really like to help him overcome it. WHen he does do something he was afraid of he feels really good but even reminding him of how doing something has made him feel good doesn't help him. Next week his class are going to the panto but he's adamant he doesn't want to go.
Sorry, that got long but I wanted to give as full a picture as possible.
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