Did you know that warning your children about things in a certain manner can affect them in ways you didn’t know? In this case I am talking about Unhealthy Fears and Childhood Anxiety!
I Know what your thinking.” How the heck can you teach your kid anxiety and why would you do that?” Well, the answer is so simple and the reason why is innocent. Let me explain. When my son was about 1 or 2 years old we lived in a house with a canal in the back yard. So naturally being the extremely anxious, paranoid mother that I am, I began to instill in him a fear of the water! I would say things like ” Don’t go near it, you could fall in and drown” or ” be careful, don’t ever go near a pool by yourself, if you fall in you could drown and die” (ugh poor kid)! I now of course have realized the error of my ways.
Over the years as him and I have both matured, I have seen the damage I have done! My son, who will be 9 in August still can not swim (not very good anyways). What have I done?? I literally was so terrified of my son drowning that I passed my unhealthy fear onto him! Instead of teaching him how to swim and save himself ‘just in case’, I did the exact opposite. And because of this, as he got older, when I would try teaching him how to swim it would backfire!! He would hold onto me for dear life, he’d panic and sink like a rock! UGH!
You can see now how something so innocent can turn into something negative when it comes to raising our children. So now that I’ve learned my lesson, I hope that I have shown you the error of my ways (my younger ways) and that you learn to take a different approach when it comes to your children! As a parent we are given no instruction manuals, instead it’s learn as you go. And with each subsequent child you learn in which ways not to “screw them up” like you did the first! (just kidding son ;))!! Remember, our fears become their fears and so does our general outlooks in life! Of course this is all based on my life’s observation and my opinion, but lesson learned!!
Originally published at www.myanxiouslife.net