Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Kids Have Stress, Too!
This is true, even as children get older and more self-sufficient. A Kidshealth.org poll asked older kids what upsets them most, and school, grades and homework ranked first, followed by family life and friends/gossip/bullying. And while talking to their parents ranked eighth as a stress reliever, 75 percent of the kids surveyed said they would feel better if they could talk to their parents about their problems. More than half of the kids surveyed said they used play or exercise to alleviate stress, but up to 25 percent take it out on themselves, hitting their heads, punching things or harming themselves in other ways. Parents can help kids work it out in healthier ways by noticing when their kids are having trouble, and commenting, then listening without trivializing, judging or making assumptions. You may begin a conversation with your child by saying,"I know it hurt your feelings when Mary didn't invite you to her party. That must've been upsetting." Even if the child isn't willing to discuss it at the time, then at least he knows you're listening and understand.