Social anxiety

SA and Kids

Sorry to have been awol. I’ve been thinking about Erika’s comment:

I’m wondering how SA and being a mom go together. Sometimes moms have to defend their children in different [social] situations so the children feel someone is backing them up when an injustice happens to them. Avoiding this kind of sometimes unpleasant social contact may cause problems with the child. And also, at what age children of SA moms become aware of this and what is their reaction.

The best way to answer this would be to use my personal experience. I had to think about whether I wanted to do this. While I decided a while back to take the plunge and be open about who I am, I don’t think it would be right to expose my family. So I’m going to try to answer Erika in a general way, based on comments I’ve read from others in this situation.

It’s very hard to generalise, though. Many women are scared of their ability to function as mothers and often decide not to find out. Or they worry that their offspring will suffer from similar problems to theirs and therefore decide not to have any.

But being a mother might force a woman out of her safety zone. Things she might avoid doing for herself she will do to protect her child. So, having children can be very helpful for the mother.

I think children will always have been aware in some sense. They will meet friends’ mothers and notice differences. I’m not sure it’s possible to generalise about their reaction. I suppose their reactions would depend on the type of people they (the children) are. I’m faltering here. Can anyone else throw any light on this?

By Miriam Drori

Author, editor, attempter of this thing called life. Social anxiety warrior. Cultivating a Fuji, edition 3, a poignant, humorous and uplifting tale, published with Ocelot Press, January 2023.

7 replies on “SA and Kids”

I think it’s a matter of degree. To what degree is the mom going to step in and protect and shelter the child from outside forces? Every good mom does that to some extent, but if you have a very shy child combined with an overprotective, hovering mother, ready to protect her daughter from all discomfort–then the shy child will rely on her mom to be her face to the public. Okay when you’re 5 maybe, but when you’re 15, 25 and 45–major problem. My SA daughter has progressed well in life, we didn’t even know this was an issue, but once we learned about it, that explained a lot.

I think Erika was asking what happens when a mother has SA. Sorry if my post confused you. I tend to confuse people by not writing enough.

Oh, gotcha! Well, guess what, I have a comment on that too, since I’m a mom who had SA. Never knew it though. Although someone told one of my kids once they thought I had agoraphopia. I was all offended. Ha! I was as normal as the next mom who never wanted to leave her house because of fear of too many people! What did they know? lol. Anyway, the kids learn “that’s just mom.” And they deal, just like they deal with a mom who is overbearing, or compulsively tidy, or hates to cook, or all the other personality elements that go with being human. Too often we think becoming a mom means becoming this perfect creature. Not going to happen. And still we make great moms, and our kids love us. Everyone learns to deal with one another’s imperfections, quirks, illnesses, disorders and all the rest of the package.

Don’t know if that’s what the question meant, but that’s my two cents on it:)

Oh, and it helps to have a husband who doesn’t have SA. Because he did a lot of that stuff that made me horribly anxious and uncomfortable, like visits to teachers and principals when there was a problem. Maybe a mom who is in this position, could send another person like the child’s father, or grandmother, or aunt?

That seems like chickening out, but sometimes it’s the best solution for the child.

This is an interesting point that is wider than SA. I think that many women do have insecurity problems to a greater or lesser extent. In my view, the nurturing and protetive instinct in the mother overcomes that insecurity in defence of her children but in her own life the problems persist.
I also agree with Karens comment that to a child whatever problem you have you are just mum

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