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Anxiety In Children – Don’t Teach Your Kids How To Be Stressed

By on 03/25/2015
anxiety in children

Anxiety In Children

anxiety in childrenI recently read an article by Dr. Roni Cohen-Sandler about ways parents can prevent their stress from becoming their kids stress. While I generally found Dr. Cohen-Sandler ‘s article to be interesting, I have a difference in opinion to several of her points regarding the cause of stress and anxiety in children.

For instance Dr. Sandler sites one reason for increased anxiousness in children these days is due to “much higher expectations for success — and at earlier ages — than even their older siblings”. Perhaps there are a few examples but on the whole, I feel with each passing generation since around 1965, students have less and less academic expectations on them. The term “the dumbing down of America” is now a phrase bantered about in reference to American students’ poor rating on a world scale. It’s no secret that America has an unacceptable number of high school graduates who are functionally illiterate.

However I agree with Dr. Cohen-Sandler ‘s opinion that the main reason children are more anxious these days is because the adults in their life are more stressed out.  With parents, teachers, and adults all around them are nervous, anxious, irritable and stressed out, it’s inevitable that anxiety will be transferred to the kids.

Here again is where I respectfully disagree with Dr. Cohen-Sandler ‘s opinion when she says that “the biggest trigger for parent stress these days is worry about kids’ success.” While I am not implying that parents are not concerned about their children’s success, I do not believe that topic is their number one concern.

The anxiety is more focused around money, jobs and other social and economic issues due largely to our failing economy these past 6 years.  Worry about whether or not they will have a job tomorrow and how will they pay the bills and keep a roof over their head is a much more common worry than wondering how successful their kids will be.

5 Ways to Keep Your Stress From Becoming Your Kids' Stress | Roni ...5 Ways to Keep Your Stress From Becoming Your Kids’ Stress | Roni …


The article does go on to offer  five helpful stress-coping strategies and a bit of advice for parents to implement them. Children learn from parents – either they learn how to be stressed out or they learn how to bend with life’s challenges.  Modeling a balanced approach to life’s challenges is the best thing parents can do teach their children how to bend with life’s inevitable demands.

Thank you  Dr. Roni Cohen-Sandler for accepting a respectful discussion.


Following is a great video to help children learn how to use their breathing to activate stress reduction and relaxation:




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