Worrying About Worrying: Children and Anxiety

A lot of children are worriers. They worry about everything from homework and tests, to playdates.  Licensed Clinical Social Worker Katie Hurley learned from  the kids she works with, there are some whose anxiety hits an even higher level. "They worry about worrying others." Katie goes on to write about what those kids go through: "Imagine worrying all day about a wide variety of things and then adding worrying about how you might make others worry to that very long list of worries? It happens a lot."

As she started noticing this trend, Katie began to ask the kids she works with "what is one thing you wish your parents understood about your anxiety? Katie made a list of the ten most common responses, which you can read here.

In an age where children are under a lot of pressure at school; social, academic, added extracurriculars, etc., it's important to understand how your child processes their anxiety so you can best offer support. Most kids with anxiety understand that it's not something their parents can fix, but it's a lesson that most parents actually have to learn -- and it's not an easy one.

Katie's list has some very poignant and seemingly simple ways to support a child with anxiety. She points out that something as simple as holding their hand is a way of showing support. But those little things can make a huge impact on a child and their emotional state. It's not only worth reading, it's also worth putting into practice and sharing with other parents who may have anxious children. While you can't take their anxiety away, sometimes the best way to help a worrier is simply to ask what you can do for them. That in-and-of itself can be a relief to a young person who carries around a lot of worry.