The best way to deal with fears is
to be supportive, yet firm. For example, you might say, “I think you’re feeling nervous,
but you do have to go to school. Tell me what you’re worried about.” You may find that
there is a real problem causing the anxiety. There may be a bully, a tough teacher, or a
test or assignment. If there is a problem, work with your child toward a solution.
Don’t give in to arguments or
tantrums. That teaches children that those things will work. Tell the teacher about your
child’s worries. Most teachers are experts at handling separation anxiety. Most
important, reward your children with praise every time they go to school and stay at
school without much difficulty.
Most of the time, school separation anxiety ends quickly. Children who are anxious may have other problems, both currently and later in life. Sometimes separation anxiety is a reaction to a recent event such as:
Children whose families have histories of panic disorder, phobias, depression, or alcoholism may be more likely to have separation anxiety. Contact your child’s healthcare provider if the behavior lasts for more than a few days or if the symptoms seem severe.