When your teen refuses to go to school, it can cause a power struggle in your home. You may find yourself in a constant battle with them. Rest assured knowing your teen is not the first teen to engage in school refusal. Recognize that there are many underlying reasons why your teen may refuse to go to school. Here are some things to consider:
- The pressure that comes from school may be overwhelming. Juggling academics, a social life, sports, and hobbies may become too much for your teen and not going to school to face this anxiety may be their best coping mechanism.
- Problems at school. Perhaps your teen is being bullied or feeling isolated. If one does not feel like they fit in anywhere, they are more likely to avoid going to the place where they are reminded of that.
- Depression, drug abuse, and/or eating disorders. There could be mental or physical symptoms that are contributing to your teens desire to stay away from school. If this could be a possibility, have them evaluated by a medical professional.
Defining School Refusal
School refusal is not to be confused with school phobia. Experts note that there is a difference between the two concepts. School phobia is fear-based. This can be linked to a fear of a specific situation or object at school. School refusal is a sign of broader anxiety- this could be separation anxiety, general anxiety, or social anxiety.
School refusal is considered an urgent situation. Therapists tend to treat school refusal as a crisis. Once you seek professional help, they will immediately work to develop a plan to address the issue at hand.
Resources for School Refusal
Ultimately, you may not have the magic key in helping your teen get in a better mindset about school. However, there are ways you can support them in trying to cope with their emotions. Help for teen refusing to go to school goes beyond the home, but that does not mean you cannot help the situation at all. Here are some ideas on how you can be supportive for your teen:
- Start the conversation. Ask your teen why they feel like going to school is not an option for them.
- Ask them how you can help. Maybe your teen needs specific help addressing a situation that is bothering them. This can also be where you determine what resources they need.
- Provide them with resources. As a parent, it is your job to guide them to places where they can get help immediately.
Solstice RTC can help
Solstice RTC is a program for young girls and assigned female at birth ages 14-18 who struggle with issues such as anxiety, depression, trauma, and/or relationship struggles. This program provides three types of therapy: individual, group, and family therapy. Solstice RTC is dedicated to teaching teens how to incorporate healthy habits into their lives. Students will leave with the skills they need to transition into the world feeling confident, happy, and able to manage their emotions. We can help your family today!
Contact us at 866-278-3345.