Coping with Change
What Sort of Changes Might Cause a Problem?For some children big changes such as:
- Parent's separation or divorce
- New step-parent/step-siblings,
- Moving house
- Changing School
- Arrival of a new baby
In order to deal with these feelings the child will call upon the inner resources they already posses in order to find a coping mechanism. As with adults, some coping mechanisms can be helpful, such as asking an adult to talk to them about what's going on. Unfortunately for them and us (the parents) plenty of coping mechanisms are negative and self-destructive.
How Children React to Big Changes
The range of behaviours that can result from these negative coping mechanisms is enormous. To name just a few possibilities:
Some children cope by expressing anger, having a tantrum, defying authority, or hitting out.
Others may retreat into themselves, becoming solemn, withdrawn and quiet.
Still others can become anxious or overly clingy.