Family

Being overprotective of your child

Dear Diane, My child got a bad concussion playing a game at school and I’ve been really overprotective ever since.
Being overprotective of your child

Dear Diane,

My child got a bad concussion playing a game at school and I’ve been really overprotective ever since. I know I’m being silly and she loves to be doing things outdoors, but I’ve just got a bit paranoid and can’t relax. I asked for a meeting with the PE teacher and he was very pleasant, but he basically said we can’t wrap her in cotton wool and we must be prepared to let her get on with things. I’m a stay-at-home mum as of last year and I feel compelled to go around to the school on PE days and “keep an eye” on things, but deep down I know this is wrong. How do I disengage?

Karen, via email

It sounds like your child is fine after the accident, but you have been left traumatised. This isn’t surprising – your daughter may not remember the accident clearly and she didn’t see herself and her responses afterwards. You, on the other hand, have been left with the trauma of having been notified that your child was hurt, saw her being cared for in a hospital setting, probably had to endure lots of “we don’t know how long it will take” and “we’ll have to wait and see”, and then had to wait for some time to see if your daughter would fully recover or be left with some residual damage. My guess is, given you cannot let go of this feeling of dread, that it has plugged into other previous traumas in your life.

Talk to your GP and discuss the best way of getting rid of your trauma. It may be some general counselling with someone who specialises in post-traumatic stress or someone who specialises in neuro-linguistic programming. Whichever you choose, the most important thing is to find a way of letting go of your feeling of dread and having to constantly watch your daughter as the only way to protect her.

Diane Levy provides expert answers to your parenting queries. Send your questions to: [[email protected]](mailto: [email protected]). Diane’s parenting books are available in book shops.

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