How to cope with anxiety due to parenthood?

I have a 2 year old son who I adore, I've been fine with him (if a little over protective) until recently when ended up having to ring 3 ambulances in the space of 3 days due to him having a serious allergic reaction. Since this episode, 4 - 6 weeks ago, I've been a complete nervous wreck when it comes to him.

If I'm not near him I want to know he's OK, if he's nearby I want to run a mile because I'm constantly analysing his every action. The joy of being a dad has completely disappeared for me, I feel so anxious and I've even had times when my head feels physically numb and even woken from my sleep with my heart pounding out of it's chest.

My girlfriend has been supportive and I even packed them off to her parents because I couldnt be near him as I was so anxious with him about.

I thought I was doing better of late but he's had a mild stomach upset and seems to be getting a bit of a cough and all I want to do is run a mile again, it's like if he's not there then it's not happening. The only person I trust with him is my girlfriend and I feel like I'm heaping pressure onto her. I know I must sound nuts, if I was an outsider looking in I would think that my life was perfect (good job, nice place etc) but this is starting to become a massive issue.

I'm honestly not sure what to do for the best. White wine makes everything OK for a while but I don't want go down that road especially as it gives me really bad reflux.

2 Replies

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  • Hi, I totally understand where you are coming from. I have a 4 year old boy and 18 month old girl. Having my first child was totally over whelming. I couldn't leave him! I had to be with him all the time, this carried on for years. His Dad couldn't even take him in the car without me having some sort of breakdown. When he was 2 he started pre school for a few hours. I felt really emotional dropping him off. Hes 4 now and in school full time. I am a little better! and having my daughter has helped also. I've had real trouble with getting their illnesses in to perspective. I took my baby girl back to the Dr's today as I was sure she had a terrible chest infection. Once again, after a visit on Monday, I was reassured that her breathing was fine and it was just in her upper airway. I feel totally crap and stupid, time wasting. I'm worried now they think I have Munchausen Syndrome and that somehow I love bringing my children to the Dr's for attention. I was due to see my GP in a few weeks for a follow up but unless I'm dying I am not going back. It is very hard to control anxiety being a parent, really really hard. If you mess it up then the consequences are too much to bare. You should take it easy on yourself and if you need some time to calm down alone then that is fine. Better than your son picking up on you stressing out completely. As long as you can reassure yourself in the time you are away from him that you can do this and it will be ok then that's fine. Remember, the older he becomes, the more speech he will develop to tell you exactly what is wrong so this is only a transitional stage. He will also, in time, seem less vulnerable. x

  • You have had a big shock Chesterton, it's not good when you are fearful . Have you suffered from anxiety before this or is it a new thing to you. I'm guessing it's the former and the incidents with your little man have set you off again. The way our body can affect us is awful and I feel so sorry for you. I am having a good patch at the moment but have had a rough year with anxiety so far. At least you know what is causing these feelings. You are very sensitised at the moment and maybe could do with some mild tranquilizers , very short term. I would go to your GP and see what he thinks. Anxiety comes and goes normally , but in some cases it loves to linger on and keep giving you a dig. It's a pain in the backside!!! Please don't go down the alcohol road. Been there done that and it's a waste of time! literally!! Be kind to yourself and have rest and make an appointment ( if you are lucky lol ) please come and let us know how you are, Love and Hugs xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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