How Can I Calm My Child Who Won’t Stop Talking About the Coronavirus?
The Understood Team
Some kids have a hard time letting go of things that worry them. They get stuck on ideas that make them feel anxious or threatened and can’t stop talking about them. (This is common in kids who struggle with
executive function and kids with autism.)
It’s not easy getting kids who
perseverate like that to put those thoughts to the side. Telling them that there’s no real threat from COVID-19 doesn’t help, especially because it isn’t true.
“The way to quell anxiety is to give kids some control over that threat,” says Jerry Schultz, PhD, clinical neuropsychologist and lecturer at Harvard Medical School. One way to do that is to make them the “experts” on the virus.
“Have them write articles, songs, plays, or create videos on the topic of How to Prepare for the Coronavirus Without Freaking Out,” says Schultz. “Let them become the voice of reason about this stressful topic and a guide for other kids (and adults).”