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Away from Anxiety | Parenting with Calmness

Away from Anxiety | Parenting with Calmness

Away from Anxiety | Parenting with Calmness


So many TV commercials count on the appeal of showcasing parents doting on their children, emphasizing that there is no other experience more blissful than being a parent. In real life, some parenting days are filled with the rambunctiousness of little children. There are also times when the days come with the pride of school recitals, soccer game victories, and the fun of taking family vacations.

While there’s indeed a lot of joy involved in parenthood, it can also be stressful and overwhelming with negative feelings, including anxiety. Parents, especially first-timers, often feel anxious about many things. Whether staying-at-home or working, single or married, parents of one or several children, every little thing can seem like a worrisome issue. Remaining cool, calm, and full of energy can help a parent with the tricky parenting journey.


Parenting Anxiety: What Is It?

Due to all the responsibilities and the exhaustion that go with parenthood, it can trigger a rise in anxiety as much as an increase in happiness. It is expected for parents to worry, and many are able to work through their own level of anxiety. The effort, however, can be derailed if the long list of parental worries seems endless:

What if he/she chokes? What if he/she gets sick? What if he/she is being bullied, abducted or abused in school? Are his/her friends to be trusted? What if he/she fails in their school performance? Added to this is what might be read on the internet that parents can become anxious about their child getting diseases. What if the child is exposed to too many chemicals in the environment?


How can a parent be calm as the list goes on?


Parenthood and anxiety are not a good mix. Of course, many parents are anxious at one time or another. Besides becoming stressed out over child-related issues, financial resources are another big source of anxiety. Parents also worry if they have enough money to send their children to a good school. These days, parents are worried about plenty of things, including keeping their homes out of foreclosure, staying or becoming employed, healthy, etc. Your worries and fears are taking away the essence of bliss in your and your child’s life.

Studies show that anxious parents create anxious children. Anxious parents, especially those with social anxiety disorder, are more susceptible to behave in ways that may put their children at a higher risk of developing stress themselves. Certain behaviors directed by anxious parents to their children can heighten anxiety and increase the chance to develop an advanced anxiety disorder of their own.

Although there is no single cause for anxiety disorders, studies show that they can run in the family. Any type of the disorder can be the result of an interaction of genetic and environmental factors. This includes certain parenting behaviors that can promote anxiety or serve as model of anxiety at home. A parent with social anxiety is not the kind to exhibit warmth and affection toward the children. They may also tend to be more critical and express doubts about a child’s competence.

Whether it is direct, like jumping at the sight of a mouse, or indirect, like excessively cautioning your child despite the absence of danger, anxiety can go awry.


Signs of Anxiety-Burdened Parenting


  • Creeping panic over being a parent – This can intensify during pregnancy when the mother reads all parenting articles to learn the details on how to be a good parent. It may also manifest in the manic phase of saving money out of fear of not having enough funds to support the children.


  • Imagining the absolute worst-case scenario – The “what if” questions become the proverbial query for an anxious parent who examines every situation and visualizes the most unpleasant circumstances that may happen to the child. This includes being molested by a relative or gunned down by a terrorist in school. Making “catastrophic” statements are aimed to sow fear by exaggerating a situation or emphasizing the most terrible elements of a situation.


  • Reading articles with tips on how to parent successful children – Along with this, you also read depressing articles with facts about unhealthy foods, drugs and alcohol use, social media influence, TV and internet violence, etc. It can lead you to think how you can teach your child to survive these challenges and threats in order to become successful in life.


  • Avoiding situations – One of the evident symptoms of anxiety is avoidance. Avoiding situations that scare or worry you so much may lead you to restrict activities for you and your children. For example, you may limit your child’s playtime or prevent your child from exploring the environment in an attempt to keep them safe.


  • Frequently complaining about not feeling well – A parent who constantly whines about headaches, upset stomachs, or appears fidgety and flushed have the telltale signs of anxiety. Anxiety can truly be a strain on your physical health.


  • Comparing yourself to others – If you think other parents are better than you, or their kids have more fun than yours, you are not focusing on what really matters – your life and your family. To make matters worse, you believe what social media says about what a perfect parent should be, and you feel worried about being short of the standards.


Easing Anxiety: Parenting with Calmness

A parent is often looked upon by a child as the most influential person in his or her life. A parent is sought for guidance and support even during the adult years. As such, it is common for parents to think and worry about their children’s welfare no matter how capable they are, how much money they have, or how bright the prospects of their future may be. There is quite a list of worries that can become a source of parenting anxiety.

In many cases, this parenting anxiety often goes away, or at least becomes better as the children grow up. Unfortunately, trouble may arise when the level of anxiety grows out of proportion, then you may feel the weight of parenthood and feel that the issues won’t ever be resolved. If the pattern continues and the negative feeling persists without treatment, the “trickle-down” effect of anxiety is up to seven times more likely to develop in children with anxious parents. The last thing an anxious parent needs is to worry that their child develops the disorder themselves.

Take heart. There is welcome news if you are feeling the downside of being a parent lately and spending too much of your time on the “what ifs” for you and your children. Anxiety counseling to experience life without excessive fear may be able to change that trajectory toward the disorder.

You may consider the benefit of seeking parents and families counseling services from a skilled counselor/therapist. Even a few sessions with the right fit therapist independently contracted with CCS – North Fayetteville Office – Fayetteville, NC can arm you with the skills to face anxiety, and to help you reduce your level of stress and worry and start parenting with calmness.


You know what it is like to experience a life filled with anxiety and you do not want this for your children. Call CCS – North Fayetteville Office – Fayetteville, NC to schedule an appointment now.

Serving Areas: Carolina Counseling Services – Fayetteville, NC (North)

Counties: Cumberland, Bladen and Sampson Counties, NC

Areas: Fayetteville NC, Ft Bragg NC, Pope Field NC, Sliver City NC, Linden NC, Bunnlevel NC, Erwin NC, Dundarrach NC, Rex NC,and Wade, NC

Zip Codes: 28311, 28395, 28390, 28356

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Carolina Counseling Services – North Fayetteville Office, Fayetteville, NC

422 McArthur Road, Suite 2
FayettevilleNC 28311

Our Mailing Address:

PO BOX 9909
Fayetteville, NC 28311

Choose your Therapist

  • Becky Clark, MSW, LCSW

    Specializes in: (Ages 18+) Anxiety, Depression, Individuals, Couples, Geriatrics, Criminal Justice, Stress Management, Loss and Grief related to death, disability, divorce, deployment, “empty nest”, retirement and other major life transitions
    Insurance: BCBS, Tricare, Medicare, and Cash

    Credit Cards: Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express

    Location: Fayetteville, NC