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Kindergarten Separation Anxiety: Mom's Fault? Think Not.

Kindergarteners. First day of school. Separation Anxiety. Do all three go hand in hand? The author of the article Separation Anxiety Seems to be on the Rise,  says yes absolutely – when it comes to this generation. He asserts that separation anxiety is a growing problem that is directly related to today’s parenting styles.

“The problem, I am convinced, is parents, not kids. It’s a given that today’s parents — mothers especially — have far more difficulty separating from their children than did parents of a generation or more ago. This is due in part to the nefarious nouveau notion that the Good Mother does as much for her kids as she possibly can and is at her kids’ beck-and-call.”

Wow. Let’s all take a collective deep breath.

Couldn’t disagree more. I think that parents today are more driven to educate themselves on parenting. With so many resources available like websites and books, parents are better informed on how to deal with behavior and school issues, like separation anxiety. Traffic to our site and articles like Get ready for Kindergarten prove that parents are arming themselves with practical parenting information.

And what about the kids of the informed parents? “Kids today” go to preschool, have more extra-curricular activities and do more for kindergarten readiness than ever before. The result? More confident kids… less difficulty separating.

Are there exceptions? Sure. Would the same type of kids who are having trouble separating now have had separation anxiety 25 years ago? Probably. 

 So what do you think? Love to hear your thoughts!

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#4 L????? 2013-05-17 14:49
Are you kidding me!?

My mother teaches little kids around that age and the truth seems to be that parents today are more into their cell phones than their kids! It's positively neglectful! They want the teachers to do all the work in raising them and when their home the babes run about around or play with their toys or video games while the adults- are they really parents?- are texting their friends and playing with their apps and hoping they won't have to actually read with the little tykes in order for them to learn how to read.

Speaking of such, guess what I saw on my most recent trip to Disney World? Sunburnt children. That should not be happening. When an able-bodied, and able-minded, adult brings someone unable to take care of themselves to a place where they will be outside for hours at a time the reapplication of sunscreen or sunblock is the responsibility of said adult. How hard is it to just apply a little every hour or two? Seriously!
#3 Beth 2011-08-29 03:09
I am sick and tired of being blamed for my child's anxiety issues. I would love nothing more than seeing my five year old son march confidently out the door to kindergarten. However, he's had anxiety issues since he was two, and although things have improved with therapy and other interventions, it's still there. I will be thrilled if we don't have to pull him out and hold him back for another year.
#2 Maryanne 2010-11-26 14:21
My daughter, who is my third child, suffers considerably from separation anxiety. She is four and is just about to complete her kindy year. She was tearful when I left her initially which is no longer an issue, but she cries if there is a drastic change to her day at Kindy and cries if she cannot see me at the end of the day at pick up time.

I feel she takes after me in that she is very sensitive and emotional. I remember feeling totally abandoned as a small child at playschool (in the UK) but I did not display as much emotion as my daughter does. I come from a very strict upbringing and did not show or say if something at school was distressing me and this continued all my school life.

We do seem to make our children our focus in life and everything else falls into the periphery. The pros of this, I believe, is that our children are more expressive and will communicate their feelings rather than feel stifled and unable to express their feelings to their parents. I think this is a better state of mind for an individual and will hopefully reduce the build up of resentment. On the downside, as a parent it is difficult to deal with and brings more worries and concerns.

I would much rather have had a more communicative relationship with my parents as a child which may have resulted in a happier school life.
#1 Joy 2009-08-23 05:29
I talked to a grandmother that has had about 30 years experience teaching and she also said that she's seeing today's kids have a tougher time which extends into the classroom situation as well. But I also do believe that parents today are better informed. The question then is if we are seeing this type of scenario in spite of being better informed then what are we being informed of ? Perhaps some of our parenting models or current assumptions on parenting are askew? To the author's credit it does seem like we (as parents) are way more child focused than our parents used to be. My gut reaction is that some of this is good but some of it goes much too far. (to the detriment of the child)

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