While some only see your child throwing a fit, I see the woman struggling behind the chaos. I see you at the store, at swim class, hovering at the kindergarten fence. I see you—because I’ve been there. I am there. Having a child with anxiety is a battle that plays out at home, late at night, at mealtime, and all the times in between. It’s a battle people tend to blame on the child, the parent, or both.
It's hard to raise a child who seems to crack as easily as an egg, who feels she's being judged with every stare. You want to swoop in and shelter your child from a world that's too harsh for her sensitive skin, a world that sometimes feels even too harsh for you.
Looking back now, maybe there were early signs—struggles with new foods, falling sleep, and potty training. You told yourself she would grow out of this. Her tight grip on your hands would loosen, and she would learn to fly on her own.
But with each new age, came new challenges. Your child's mind filled with fears of dying, losing a tooth, and making friends. Questions like, "Will I die?" and "Will you die?" make a simple car ride turn into a minefield to be navigated with well-crafted responses.