It’s a parent’s worst nightmare. One second, your beloved child is having the time of their life, and they are fit, happy and healthy. The next, disaster strikes and they are seriously injured. It can have a massive impact on the whole family, and you might be overwhelmed by the stress of trying to help everyone cope. But there is a way through the haze - let’s find out everything you need to know about overcoming stress when your child is injured.
Understanding the injured child
Naturally, your first thoughts will be on the child who is suffering the most. You have to remember that they will be very scared about being in hospital.
The clinical environment is not a particularly nice one for kids of any age, no matter how many friendly posters, games and toys the well-meaning hospital staff put in their room. They will be worried about being separated from family and friends, too, and the strange sounds, smells, people and pain they are in is quite a toxic mix.
Of course, you will be going through a huge range of emotions yourself. You might be worried about the eventual outcome, and even if you know they will be OK in the end, it is extremely difficult to see your child in pain. However, research suggests that you should hold it together for your kids.
According to several studies, parents who are more anxious and stressed are actually less able to support their injured children. Sure, it will be tough to be strong, but it’s moments like this when your little ones really need you. It works both ways, too. Once you start to find that inner strength, it can multiply reasonably quickly.
Control the controllable
When something happens to our children, we often feel responsible. But you have to understand that there are some things in life that you can’t control, and in the vast majority of cases, accidents happen. The reality is that you can’t control the past, but you can have a say in the future.
There are numerous things you can do in any given situation. Let’s assume your little one has been knocked over by a car - you can start the process of regaining control by pursuing an accidents involving pedestrians compensation claim. You can also get control back by ensuring your child has the best possible care, and learning about all the possible outcomes your child might face - and preparing for them.
Don’t forget the family
It’s easy to forget about the impact of a child’s injury on their brothers and sisters. Kids of all ages will have trouble processing their emotions, and there is likely to be a significant impact.
Some siblings might think it is their fault. Others may react with having temper tantrums or nightmares. It’s important that you understand the impacts aren’t just on the injured child alone - they will encompass everyone in the family.
Find support systems
Finally, make sure you have the right kind of support. Friends and extended family members can help you take some of the strain, and you may also benefit from counseling. With the right information, discussions and support, you will find yourself dealing with the stress of having an injured child in a much more positive way.