by Katy Edgington 
AUK Adopter Support Manager

Every night since the schools have been closed, my 7-year-old son has had night terrors. We would run up to his room in a panic to find him sat up in bed, sweating, and wailing in terror. During these episodes he is still asleep though, so there is no opportunity to connect with him, to discover what is causing these nightly occurrences. 

Finally, last night he was so shaken by his nightmare that he had actually woken up. I've never felt him pull me in so tightly for a hug. Bless his soul, he dreamt about my husband and me dying from the virus. With many reassurances and a drink of water, he was able to fall back asleep - but my husband and I did not sleep well. 

We chatted all night about how well our children hide their insecurities and concerns and how we felt we had failed him this week. 

I posted these events on Facebook and was actually surprised to find that many of my friends and family members were experiencing the same with their children. 

Many of our children have built this incredible capability to smile through difficult times, much like they had to in their lives before us. I've realised that in our scrambling to ensure our children are well educated through this time while also keeping up with our own jobs we've failed to recognise that maybe they have noticed every news reel, every conversation, and how scared they must feel every time we tell them that without soap they haven't properly washed their hands. 

So, in my house, today is our day to step back and focus on nurturing and reassurance for our children. My husband and I are dusting off our books and saved articles on therapeutic parenting - and most importantly, we're contacting our friends and checking in on them. Especially those who are on the adoption journey alongside us and who 'get it'.

Listed here are some resources my husband and I will be calling on over the next few days:

  •  40 Activities and tips to help an anxious child - Click here
  • Therapist and child approved activities to help with anxiety - Click here
  • Managing anxiety tips from the charity Young Minds - an organisation fighting for young people's mental health

Also, remember, our Helpline Advisors are here to support you. Find our number and opening hours are detailed here.