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When walking away becomes the hardest thing

Separation anxiety actually happens to more people than we care to admit. The thing about separation anxiety is that in most cases we regard this as a normal feeling when we develop an attachment to something or someone however, separation anxiety can cause more than just sadness and feelings of longing when separated from that someone or something.

When people with separation anxiety begins to feel the threat of separation, usually the reaction is very intense and for some it may seem irrational but it is actually something they can’t help or overcome as logically as a person who is not suffering from separation anxiety.

Children with separation anxiety are very common, what we may not be aware of is that the mother too can suffer the same separation anxiety especially if the mother is a single parent and going through a difficult divorce or those with complicated circumstances. They turn to their children or child as a source of comfort and although it can help her in some ways it can also be to her disadvantage.

Mother and child form a special bond from the time of conception to the time the child is born; single mom’s often become more clingy and protective with their young because they get comfort from knowing they are not alone. This special bond continues which is often quite rewarding but when the child is about to enter school then the mother starts to develop these feelings of anxiety often not really understanding what they feel.

When the child starts to explore his surroundings and start to make friends or start school the mother starts to become overly protective which is often more disadvantageous to the child’s development. Separation anxiety can create a lot of problem to the child and this often leads to a lot of emotional and social problems; the child is unable to adapt to his surroundings because the mother is always watching and often intercepts the child’s attempt to do things they think could hurt them.

As single parents you have more responsibility on your shoulders however you should not limit your world and that of your child by trying too hard to be there at all times. Be realistic and learn to accept the fact that at one point in time you will need to let them go and allow them to test their wings. Letting go of their hands when they try to wriggle free is not always easy; watching them walk away when they  board the bus can be painful and turning your back and taking your leave when you finally drop them off to school can be the most difficult thing but you have to understand you owe it to them to make them live a normal life.

You can’t be omnipresent in their lives and the best thing you can do for them is teach them how to live not protect them from the harsh realities. Letting go and walking away need not be heart-breaking at all times.