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My 6 year old is not happy but I don't know how to help him.

(8 Posts)
TheOriginalFAB Wed 05-Oct-11 16:26:03

For a week he hasn't wanted to go to school and says he is tired and has a headache and stomach ache. He has a good nights sleep and is eating and looking fine. He has never not wanted to go to school like this before. I don't want to ask leading questions but he is only six and it upsets me to see him so sad. IMO this has started since he was beaten up at school but the teacher tells me he is fine at play time. He has been told off yesterday and today but the not wanting to go predates that. He is one of the youngest in the class and he rally should be at home with me still sad.

PhasesRUs Wed 05-Oct-11 21:32:31

This is so difficult for you. I had a similar experience last year. My DD had the tiredness, headaches and stomach aches. The doctors weren't much use (laxatives, saying it was very common and I should ignore it) and nor was the school, continually asking if there was anything going on at home! Only when my DD had lost a considerable amount of weight did I start getting anything like help in the form of some talk about psychological counselling. When you are in the middle of it, you get very caught up in all the professional views (teachers, doctors, school counsellors) and it is easy to forget that this is your child, and you know him. It sounds completely obvious that your son is unhappy about going to school because he was beaten up. If your son's school is like my daughter's, the teachers won't have any idea what goes on at playtime as they are not out in the playground. Or, if they are, they have a large space and several hundred bodies to keep an eye on. If you think your son is frightened or worried then I think you are probably right. What to do about it is more complicated. Over the course of the year that my daughter was unhappy we went through all the options: moving school, home education, sticking it out … in the end a change of year and a new teacher did the trick. (For her the problem wasn't actual violence but girl-cattiness and poor classroom discipline.) It is important, I think, to make sure that your son knows that you are going to support him. Perhaps a chat with the head of the school might be the place to start? The school has a duty of care to safeguard your son and the head should take your worries seriously. Good luck!!

TheOriginalFAB Thu 06-Oct-11 11:14:40

Thank you so much for taking the time to post all that smile. have a really good relationship with my son's teacher and head of infants and they are extremely proactive with helping my son. The HOI has spoken to me this morning and she has spoken with the teacher and have a plan in action to help my son and also have another plan in mind if that doesn't work. She has ordered a big pack of something to also help him and I am confident she will make sure she does everything she can to help him settle. I wish the people who are ment to be looking after my other son's well being were as good..

PenguinsAreThePoint Thu 06-Oct-11 11:21:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheOriginalFAB Thu 06-Oct-11 11:36:05

Thank you, all good ideas again.

He looked so sad yesterday when I waved goodbye after seeing him in his Harvest Festival, he looked like he didn't want me to come.

I don't know if he just wants to be with me or whether he doesn't want to go to school.

He is such a real darling and so precious to me (I lost his twin) and I just want to make him feel happy and safe and secure.

TheOriginalFAB Thu 06-Oct-11 11:39:12

DS's teacher has been going out at play time to keep an eye on him so I am pleased about that.

PhasesRUs Fri 07-Oct-11 21:22:08

Excellent advice from PenguinsAreThePoint. Yes, do remain calm and don't let yourself get overwhelmed (so hard!). And the listening is vital. Listen and don't dismiss but equally don't dramatise or rephrase in your own words. Completely agree with bribery – or rewards – as this was very useful for us in getting through the year. On the subject of getting overwhelmed, try to make sure you are looking after yourself: I got very run down with worry and had a long, long low-level viral illness for about two months last winter. That just made it harder for me to cope and be cheerful. Wear nice clothes when you can, don't feel a victim yourself: your child will take their emotional barometer from you and if you look optimistic and positive it does help them cope, I think.

After several months of tears, I decided to offer my daughter the choice of moving to another school, home education or staying put. The only condition was that she had to finish the year. We went to visit another school, so she could know I was taking it all seriously, and she quite liked that new school. She was also very excited by the prospect of home education. But in the end, she decided to stay where she was. I really think that because it was her decision it gave her back some of the power that she'd lost. (I was lucky because I could offer her all those options, of course.)

I really, really hope your son's problems don't drag on for long and that something clicks him back into happiness soon. It is so upsetting to see them in tears when they leave you but it is worth trying to be as cool as you can. I can see now that my DD has gained a huge amount by getting through last year: she knows it was really hard and that she did it pretty much on her own. She's proud of herself and I think it's given her the confidence to know she'll be able to handle problems in the future.

Good luck and I hope you have happier times soon.

TheOriginalFAB Sat 08-Oct-11 12:04:22

DS2 has spoken to the assistant head teacher about what he is worried about and we were able to sort those concerns immediately. He is very happy about his chart he is having on Monday and I am giving him lots of cuddles.

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