School Trips, Talent Shows & Stress!

Published April 12, 2013 by thefamilyof5

The School Trip

Big girl struggles with all things related to school. At the beginning of the year there was a 3 day residential trip. (I dont think I’ve blogged about it, but please forgive me for repeating myself if I have). As soon as I found out about the trip last year I had reservations about whether big girl would cope. She’d never spent a night away from us since she came home and I certainly didn’t think 2 nights away with school would be her ideal first sleep over, but still, I kept an open mind. The letters came out several weeks before Christmas. ‘please can I go?’ she asked. We chatted, I told her that I was worried that she wouldn’t like sleeping away from home and would be awake all night and then feel anxious all day. I suggested that we dropped her off and collected her each day so that she could sleep at home. ‘I really want to go, please can I go?’ she begged and pleaded until in the end I agreed that if she really wanted to go and felt it was something she could handle, then she could go.

A few weeks later I wrote the cheque and put it in an envelope and left it ready to take to school. I popped to the shop that evening just before bedtime. Big girl spotted the envelope on the unit just before bed and asked Daddy what it was, so he told her it was the money for her trip and off she went to bed. That was a Friday night. From Friday to Monday she had around 12hours sleep in total. Every night that weekend She struggled to sleep, I’d go up to her room to ask her if she was ok and each time she would say she was fine. By Monday morning she was a jibbering mess and was crying and unable to tell me why. I’ll cut a very long and distressing Monday morning of missing school short, to tell you that in the end she blurted out that she actually didn’t want to go on the school trip afterall and had been worried about it all weekend. Needless to say that I reassured her that she didn’t have to do anything she didn’t want to do and I would book her the 3 days off school as holiday. And I did. I might add that until the actual day of the school trip came, and passed, she didn’t fully trust that I would keep my promise, but when the day arrived, she sighed a huge sigh of relief.  And so did I.

The Talent Show

A few weeks ago big girl came home from school with a letter to enter a talent show, ‘Please can I do it?’ she asked. Here we go again I thought. I was right, everything that happened with the school trip happened all over again, she begged, and pleaded, I told her of my concerns, she pleaded some more, I relented and signed the form. The talent show was/is to take place some time after Easter half term the letter said. Over Easter half term  she was stressy, stroppy, tired and irritable and the self harming habits returned.  After many nights of no sleep and many many difficult days, she finally blurted out that she didn’t want to do the talent show afterall.

Big girl so desperately wants to fit in at school.

Next time she presents me with something I don’t think she will cope with, I will go with my gut reaction and say no.

 

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15 comments on “School Trips, Talent Shows & Stress!

  • Mommys really do know best. You have to balance that reality and the 3-5 days of insanity you are trying to avoid with the other side, too. Will she resent you for telling her she can’t? At least the way it has happened she was the one saying no and you were the good guy for being willing to let her go and then willing to let her stay. Hopefully you can have a talk about these two incidents and she can come to the same conclusion as you, but without the days of drama! And keep trusting your gut!

  • I think lots of our children struggle with certain situations, and as much as they want to do them, they just can’t cope. It’s hard being the big bad wolf that says ‘no’, but sometimes we have to. Your gut is right, go with it.

    Thanks for linking with the Weekly Adoption Shout Out x

  • That’s such a difficult position to be in. You want her to feel involved with school and wonder whether these activities would help with that, yet you know your daughter so well that your instincts tell you she’s not ready for it. I would day though that it is important for her to also learn what she does feel able to do and unable to do because that will help her through her life. I would want to protect her from any upset but on re-reading your post I think you got it spot on. She needed to feel those emotions and share them with you. That’s amazing that she could. Ok it took some time and it took her to a very uncomfortable place but she told you her feelings. That’s brilliant. Now you know this maybe next time there is a way you could help her get to her place of recognising her emotions in a less traumatic way? A way of helping her think forward with her feelings? A sort of timeline game to enable her to safely understand and express her feelings without needing to self harm? Good luck. You’re doing amazingly well xx

    • It is important for her to recognise her own feelings and understand her own capabilities, but, in future, until she’s ready, rightly or wrongly, I’m going to be the big bad wolf and protect her from things like this, she deals with stress and anxiety on a daily basis, if I can prevent/reduce it, I will. At least until she’s in a better place to be able to deal with things herself 🙂

  • I feel like such a big ol’ bag sometimes saying no over and over again because I know the disruption in our routine right now is just not worth the fall out. But I feel like I need to and so I’ll play the role:) Stay strong, you know her best and what IS best for her at the moment.

  • I think it’s good in some ways that she’s experienced how hard it is because that way she find it easier to trust in your decision when you say no next time. I often find that if I can recall an example to support me decision it helps explain why the decisions been made. Not easy though seeing her go through such turmoil.

    Thank you for sharing in the Weekly Adoption Shout Out. x

    • I’m hoping your right, the next time she presents me with a scenario like these I’ll be able to reflect back on these 2 incidents with her and show her that even though she might not agree with my decision, she can see that I actually know what’s best and am protecting her from stress and worry, that’s the plan anyway 😉 x

  • This sounds like a rotten situation to be in, I bet it is difficult to say no when she is begging and pleading. I would be inclined to bring these situations up to remind her of why you are saying no. Would that help her think a little more herself?

    • Yes i will be using these 2 examples to back up my ‘no’ decision in future that’s for sure 🙂 Im not sure it’ll help her understand, but hopefully in the future she’ll realise why I said no 🙂

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