Are you suspicious that your child may be having an issue, but you can’t put your finger on it? Some children are so good at hiding things from their parents, that the parent couldn’t be expected to know when there is a problem. On the other hand, some parents don’t pay enough attention to their children to notice something isn’t right.
There is a range of scenarios as to why issues with kids go unnoticed, but you need to be doing everything in your power to ensure that it doesn’t happen. You want to be there for your kids as much as you can, so you need to be vigilant and open whenever you talk to them. Here are some of the common signs that something might be wrong, and what you can do to get to the bottom of them.
Not Eating Properly
The first sign is not eating properly. Now, this could be for a number of reasons. They could simply not be hungry if it is just a one-off every now and again, or they may not be feeling well. But, if it is more than that, it may be an indication that something deeper is going on. For instance, your child may feel like they are fat and need to lose weight. It’s a horrible reality that children of any age may think this way. But unfortunately, it can be a common issue. If you were to look on their computer, and I’m not saying that you necessarily should or shouldn’t, but you may find searches for posts like How to lose 30 pounds in 30 days without exercise if it is weight-related.
On the brighter side, it could be something else entirely. They could be anxious about something in their life, which will curb their appetite, or it could be that there is more to it… You need to talk to them, without pushing too hard, as eating issues can be very serious – and last a lifetime – if not dealt with quickly and properly.
A lot of parents put this down to simply acting out and rebelling, and sometimes it is. However, sometimes it isn’t. Most of the time when a child acts differently from the way they usually do, something has changed. Maybe they don’t feel as though they are getting enough attention from you, and as such negative attention is better than no attention. Or, they are having a hard time dealing with a huge issue like bullying. Again, you need to talk to them and get to the root of the issue, instead of just firing off punishments.
Finally, if your child is starting to isolate themselves, then something needs to be done. They cannot be allowed to think that they are alone, even if that is what they say they want at the time. At the end of the day, isolation is never the solution as it can just cause problems to fester even further – even if this is what your child asks for since they don’t know how to cope with how they are feeling. Show them you aren’t perfect too, and they should open up.
My hope is that you have found this article helpful, and are able to more clearly see some of the signs that there could be an issue with your child or children. I know that a lot of the time parents don’t want to see an issue, because it’s always easier to pretend that everything is okay, but doing this is detrimental to the mental health of that child. Trust me, as a teenager growing up with an eating disorder, I have been through this first-hand. Making that tough decision now to seek help is always easier than once it’s too late! You’ve got this!