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Stressful mornings with anxious tween

(7 Posts)
Wootamess Sat 14-Nov-20 12:10:07

Dd has always been quite sensitive and gets anxious about being apart from me.
After a better than expected start to high school mornings are beginning to unravel a bit.

The pattern tends to be that she gets into a state about some aspect of her appearance-usually her hair not being right and makes herself late to leave the house. Then gets into a worse state because she is late and doesn’t want to get into trouble and it all results in a spiral of stress and tears.

So far school have been understanding and have asked what they can do to help but we’re both at a bit of a loss.

I make sure she gets up with plenty of time but these issues tend to manifest as the time to leave gets closer.

I’ve tried being kind and offered to help with the hair but that’s never been successful.

I’ve tried leaving her to be late-that made her hysterical and then we had to wait until she’d calmed down before she eventually went in

She’s had her phone confiscated-not that bothered-maybe needs to happen for longer?

I’ve talked about what might be the issue-possibly a lot of tests and comparing of results.

She’s got nice friends-that doesn’t seem to be the issue.

She’s past the stage where i think it’s appropriate to drag her kicking and screaming to school. I want to help but it doesn’t sit well to be pandering to her strops about her appearance even though I know it’s a big deal at that age.

Sorry for steam of consciousness. It’s stressing the whole house out

OP’s posts: |
LouiseTrees Sat 14-Nov-20 12:25:31

Ask her if someone has said something about her appearance? When she complains about her hair don’t say you’ll help her with it , say it looks nice? Have everything else like clothes/bag everything that you can done the night before so it is just breakfast and hair needed?

Fivemoreminutes1 Sat 14-Nov-20 12:38:11

My Dd was like this in Y4.
I made a deal with DD that if we arrived at school on time, she could have a squirt of some tween body mist and apply some lip balm. We kept this in the glove box of the car and I’d let her have it when we arrived. This bribe worked a treat! Not only did it motivate her to leave the house on time but she went into school thinking she was the bee’s knees!
The teachers did a fair bit to help, too. They asked DD where she wanted to sit in class and promised her that she could ring me briefly each lunchtime if she came into the class and settled down without a fuss.
I switched her to packed lunches, and bought her a cool new lunchbox. She helped me fill it each morning which also helped distract her from getting in a state about school.

CatherineSanderson Sat 14-Nov-20 12:46:14

I obviously don’t know but I’d consider the possibility of an anxiety disorder. These often manifest in such a vague way that the sufferer themselves can’t pinpoint the problem, because there’s nothing they’re logically afraid of.
Of course I could be way off but because they run in my family, quite a few of the things you mention ring a bell with me.

PollyPocket245 Sat 14-Nov-20 14:14:25

I agree with the above post about anxiety, I had body dysmorphia as a teenager which manifested as stress and anxiety about how I looked. I could be wrong but it might be worth looking up the symptoms just to be aware incase it gets worse

Ohalrightthen Sat 14-Nov-20 15:38:07

You say she's anxious, but have you actually done anything about getting her some help?

Punishing her isn't going to do anything except make her feel like she is inherently wrong. Rather than removing privileges, why arent you supporting her and helping her to manage her anxiety?

Wootamess Sat 14-Nov-20 18:51:04

We have worked through a couple of books aimed at children with anxiety. They’ve been helpful in her understanding why she feels worried and how to manage her feelings-were useful in helping her sleep a while ago. Maybe need to revisit these from a new angle.

She is adamant that she doesn’t want to speak to anyone like a counsellor -i doubt I would be able to get her to go anywhere or engage online without some degree of trickery.

OP’s posts: |

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