Helping your child deal with teen social anxiety can be a difficult task for a parent. Especially if you’ve never dealt with it yourself. Dread, fear, panic, paralyzing nervousness–these are all things someone with teen social anxiety may be experiencing. There are certain tips you can pass on to your child that may help alleviate or make it easier on them. Psych Central recently compiled some advice into an article that may be able to help your teen.
Tips for handling teen social anxiety
- Bring a buddy. If you’ve been invited to a party or social event, ask if you can bring along a friend. If you can, make sure it’s someone who comforts you and will bring you some ease in social situations.
- Find a safe place. Those with teen social anxiety often have a moment of panic when they walk through the door and are faced with many people. When you walk in, look around for a spot with less people–a corner seat for example–and make that your spot to go to when you need a moment to yourself.
- Have a time you’re going to leave. Have a plan for when you’re going to leave and make sure the host of the social event knows. Simply saying you have some things you need to work on for school will often suffice. This gives you a limited amount of time and keeps you from becoming overwhelmed when you get tired later on.
- Find the food. If you feel a little sick to your stomach from nervousness, check out the snack table and grab a bite to eat. It’ll give you a moment to calm down and have a moment before you have to engage.
- Have discussion topics on hand. Teen social anxiety often gets worse when there’s a long silence. Think of a few things to talk about before the get-together. It could be anything from commenting on the food to something you recently saw on television.
- Don’t be afraid to step away. Everyone has their moments. If your teen social anxiety is getting out of hand, take a moment for yourself. Go find your safe space, whether that’s outside, the bathroom, or the corner. You can only do your best.
- View it as an achievement. When you’ve reached the end of the time you’ve decided to stay at an event, congratulate yourself! You made it, you’ve accomplished something!
When it gets to be too much
Sometimes teen social anxiety can’t be handled with just a few tips–and that’s fine. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. A parent can’t do everything alone, at times they need a helping hand. If your child’s social anxiety is getting in the way of their daily life, it may be time to seek out a professional for further guidance on how to best help your child succeed.
blueFire Wilderness can help
blueFire Wilderness is a wilderness therapy program for struggling teens, ages 11 to 17. Our students often grapple with teen social anxiety, depression, and other emotional or behavioral problems. At blueFire, we strive to help each client succeed.
For more information about how blueFire Wilderness treats teen social anxiety, please call 1 (844) 413-1999 today!