Anxiety in 5yo girl. What's normal?

(3 Posts)
fuzzpig Tue 27-Nov-12 14:10:47

For a start, I'll admit I have no frame of reference as to what is normal - my childhood, both in terms of my nature and the environment I grew up in, was anything but.

I had no concerns about PFB DD until recently. She is getting on fine at school (yr1). But recently she has had a lot of anxiety. She is having a lot of trouble sleeping, and even when she's not even been to sleep, she says she has had 'bad thoughts' about things like mummy and daddy going away or more fantastical things like monsters. I don't think it's just a delaying tactic, she seems genuinely terrified.

She got told off at school for the first time ever last week and was completely inconsolable. She didn't even want me to know as she thought I'd be sad sad she is now having nightmares about being sent to prison and is convinced her teacher will hate her forever even though we have reassured her otherwise, talked about forgiving and forgetting etc.

She has also started checking things we say, numerous times. As in "did you say I could..." when we've already said yes. She got really upset about a couple of dress up days at school - she refused to go in pyjamas for CIN (fair enough) but was totally convinced we had got the day wrong and she would end up being the only one in own clothes, with funny hair etc, she was really worked up. Kept saying "are you sure mummy" etc. I'm not sure if it's a memory issue, or if she just doesn't believe us. Sometimes I've got frustrated with her for not listening in the first place. She doesn't seem to have much of an attention span (another thing I've wondered about but I think it is just that it's totally different from what I was like, very passive/introvert etc)

Written down it doesn't seem like much but sometimes I just feel like she is more anxious than a little girl should be. We've had a very stressful couple of years but we've tried really hard not to let that filter down to her - maybe we've failed sad

Any advice please?

DeWe Tue 27-Nov-12 14:27:01

I'd say don't let her worry about worrying, if that makes sense. If she asks you multiple times, then just answer multiple times without commenting.
If she's worried about being the only one not in uniform take her uniform along in a bag (she won't be the only one worrying about that).

Getting told off for the first time is a big thing for them, assure her that the teacher will forget. I don't think it's unreasonable for them to know that you'll be sad they were told off at school but don't make a meal of it. (I'm sure you didn't)

Dd1 in year 1 got a nervous habit about going to the toilet. The teacher told me that whenever she said "we're going to do X next", off she would go to the toilet. She'd do it at home too-I'd say leaving in 5 minutes-she'd go to the toilet, put her shoes on, go to the toilet, and as I opened the door to go, she'd go to the toilet again.
We never made anything of it, and just let her keep going when she wanted to, and she gradually grew out of it, but it took a long time. Luckily her teacher understood well, so just let her go, even when it was awkward.

fuzzpig Tue 27-Nov-12 22:08:05

I pretty much do the same thing with the toilet especially before bed. Started in pregnancy and can't shift it 6 years later angry

Thank you for the reassurance, and that is very sensible advice. I know I have been guilty of getting annoyed at her when she asks things again, which is so hypocritical considering I have issues with quadruple double-checking and processing info myself!

I will endeavour to just calmly answer again and not get stressed about it.

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