I am writing this blog for the purpose to letting others know that they are not alone when it comes to dealing with a child that has anxiety and phobias. There is hope, and I know this first hand.
I have a son that is fifteen years old and has been suffering with anxiety and fears since he was very young. The hardest thing for a parent to do is watch your child while he/she is having panic attacks, while nibbling on tums and asking me question after question, day after day about the food that he ate that day and if I think it has already digested or better yet, if the food was good or not. Night time is the worst for some reason. It is repetitive and draining when you are asked the same thing day after day. The answers are always the same and let me tell you, it gets to be frustrating as hell. I have told him to try and write in a journal so that he can see that he is in a pattern of habits that won’t stop until he recognizes them and puts forth some effort into changing them. My ex- husband and I have taken him to multiple therapists, and nothing has seemed to help. We have spent tremendous amounts of money, only for my son to say that he will never go to another therapist because they are all crazy and it doesn’t help at all. My ex isn’t very keen on the idea of therapy and when my son has heard him say negative things about them he decided to agree. He has been put on a couple different types of medication and none of them have really done much for him. The only medication that really did seem to help him, was one that was with addictive properties, so the doctor took him off of them.
It’s unfortunate that when I was young I suffered from the exact same fears and no one back then knew what to do for me either. You would think that considering I know first hand what is going on in his head, I would know exactly how to handle when he freaks out but quite frankly, I am probably the worst person to try and help and here is why. It took me many years to finally break down and agree to take the medication because I was so afraid of the side affects and that it would make me throw up. I was an adult, in my thirties, by the time this happened and I just knew that I had to do something so that I did not have to live my life with limitations. From the time that I got out of school, I had prayed and prayed to be healed. I went to counselor after counselor and it wasn’t that I didn’t learn anything from them, it was that it was ME that had to commit change. I needed to push myself out of my comfort zone and learned to take chances. There was a fantastic program that I saw on television one late evening, where this woman talked about the exact circumstances that I was dealing with. I couldn’t believe my ears. To actually hear that there were others out there dealing with the exact same problems as I had was so comforting. I purchased the program and went threw it with a fine tooth comb. I listened to every single tape and did the homework from a workbook I was given. This woman speaker filled me with so much information, on how to relax and do positive self talk. It was a miracle. The biggest lesson that I had learned is that we can’t change anyone….they have to do it for themselves. I have tried over and over to have my son listen to these tapes and do the homework out of the workbook but he is still young and very resistant to change. It scares me to death to think that he will live the rest of his life like this. I, of course, want to see him thrive and be successful. To be happy in his own skin and do what ever he feels like doing without fear holding him back.
I do realize that with more maturity, he will become more interested in following the same path that I took to change that negative debilitating thought process into positive ones so that he will find his way to freedom.
Even though I still go through very frustrating days seeing him suffer, I do my own deep breathing and pray that eventually it will all work out!
If anyone would like to know more about the program that I found to be helpful, please contact me and I will be more than happy to give you the information on how to order it. My personal e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.