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the end of the world

(7 Posts)
Wheaty08 Wed 22-Jun-11 21:28:02

My DS thought the world was going to end. He got really upset and there was nothing that could be said that would make it any better. Has anyone else gone through this??? any advice? smile

trident Thu 23-Jun-11 20:48:35


I didn't want your message to go unanswered but I am not sure what I can say that will help you deal with your DS ......

I know that when I was growing up I thought that the world would end - Nostradamus and all that - I was convinced that I wouldn't reach 21... I did..

...then there was the Millennium bug - I worried a lot about that too - I survived.....

When I has my DS I didn't think that he would survive until he was 5 years old - he did and is now 16.....

and when 9/11 came - Hell - I was just out furiously buying water and rice in massive quantities to store.... and working out all kinds of survial strategies should a World War break out.... we spent a good few years eating thru the supplies...

I think it comes from an anxious personality - and an inability to be able to think that you control your destiny.

..not sure what to suggest - they are no God-Givens in this life and maybe that and mortality is just becoming apparent to you DS ... when we are young we believe it will be forever - and life is not always like that...

I think I picked up a lot of this paranoia due to my Mother - I always remember that she had large cupboards with supplies - maybe for the Cuba crisis, maybe for the toilet roll shortages, maybe for the sugar shortages, maybe for the power cuts back then - who knows - but the gathering/survival instinct has been with me a loooong time...

.... I am a little better now - I don't bulk buy at the slighest hint of uprising on the TV - but I must admit that I am worried about December 2012.....

Luckily I have a positive partner who humours me and takes the mickey from time to time and manages to talk me thru my fears (sort of).....

I think that you need to talk thru what your DS is feeling and get him to articulate what is the worst thing that could happen and then maybe talk thru "plans" to help him.... what it the worst that could happen....

..sorry I can't be of more help - but I feel his panic sometimes...

Wheaty08 Thu 23-Jun-11 21:21:58

Thanks for your reply. I know what it was like when I was growing up and it seems so different now esp with the internet. It's nice to know there are people out there to talk to smile

webwiz Thu 23-Jun-11 21:47:18

I think 'end of the world' worries are quite common in teenagers. I'm not a worrier and I thought we'd all die from a nuclear explosion when I was a teen thanks to several scary programmes on tv at that time, my DCs have gone through various global warming worries and even my MIL told me she was convinced the Cuban missile crisis would be the end of the world. I think its part of growing up and realising there's a world out there that you don't have any control over. I agree with Trident that you should get your DS to talk it through with you.

brehon Thu 23-Jun-11 23:04:40

If it's any help, my DD2 is 12 and got worried about 2012 due to all the films, tv programmes etc. I spoke to her as best I could and told her that i remembered loads of people going up Mount St Helens in 1980 cos the world was going to end with the eruption....... I also told her that they all had to come down the mountain when it didn't happen. She thought this was very funny and it helped her to realise that these theories have been around for centuries.

cory Fri 24-Jun-11 09:35:44

I was a teen during the Cold War and I know there were plenty of people scared shitless then. I never was, it's a personality thing.

I would treat it as any other phobia, say to your teen "yes, I understand that you are feeling this fear and it is horrible, but you need to learn to control it so it doesn't take over your life". Explain that you and most people around him do not believe this, that there is in fact no particular reason for believing it, but you understand that it must be scary for him. And then teach him some basic CBT: let him visualise a crossroads with one fork leading down to Thoughts About the End of the World. And teach him that whenever these thoughts crop up he has to say to himself firmly NO, I don't have to walk down that path, I'm going to take the other path.

And a funny story can help too, like brehon said. Visualising the people walking down Mount St Helens is wonderful.

BusyBodd Sun 26-Jun-11 19:24:19

It's one of the things that comes with adolescence - the realisation of mortality; it's part of a developing ability to think about abstract concepts. I remember having nights of terror as I grappled with the fact that I was not going to live forever and that in a hundred years' time I wouldn't be here. I still occasionally have uneasy moments if I think about it too much but my religious faith has helped.

I think it goes some way towards explaining why teenagers often behave recklessly; they're trying to pretend it isn't true, and also why many are fascinated by the supernatural, vampires etc.

The only comfort I think there is that it's the one thing all human beings have in common and so we all share it.

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