Raising children can be scary at times, and the thought of raising a child who may seem to be a bit too sensitive sometimes can even seem harder. We get it, thinking of something anything out of the ordinary for your child, especially for a new parent, is probably not what you thought of when deciding to give this whole “parenting” thing a shot. But now that you are raising a beautiful child that may be a little out of the ordinary, we want you to be able to understand his or her actions and how to help them. This is why we are covering HSC, the highly sensitive child. We’re here to break down the diagnosis of HSC and what you can do to help your child cope with it.
Does My Child Have HSC?
If you have ever noticed that your child reacts immediately to small changes in their environment, or that your child seems incredibly sensitive to anything that you may not have thought was a big deal, then your child may be a highly sensitive child. Before you get too worried about whether or not your child is a highly sensitive child, you must know that nearly twenty percent of the population is born with a nervous system that relates to HSC. It is very common and can be dealt with with the right support. But before you jump to conclusions, we encourage you to take this quiz by The Highly Sensitive Person to see if you see the common traits in your child.
Understanding Your Highly Sensitive Child
If you’re reading on, you may have found that your child or someone you know may have HSC. It is important to understand how their brain works and why they feel the way they do in certain circumstances. First, you must understand that this is not a choice for them and that it is a biological trait they are born with. People with HSC feel deeply, whether it is distress, defeat, sadness, or even have very inquisitive thoughts. With that, while one child may be able to brush off someone laughing at them, a child with HSC may be hurt by this and cry for a long time due to embarrassment or hurt. Aside from the trouble that may come with HSC, you should be able to see it as a gift.
Someone who is highly sensitive can be extremely creative, empathetic, or have great insight. They want you to know that they care and that you can count on them. They want to solve problems and they overflow with love. With this we encourage you to see the bright side of HSC and not overwhelm yourself with the repercussions that may come with it.
Create a Safe Place
If your child gets anxiety from crowds or noise, or may just cry at one little mishap, then a safe place for them to go can be a great way for them to cope with their feelings. By creating a room or a corner in your house that is welcoming to them, your child will be able to feel more calm and at ease from the anxiety that is brought on to them by the outside world. Sometimes all they need is a place to be alone to let out their emotions (because they have an abundant amount of them). Give them their time and be close to them in case they want to talk about what they are feeling.
School or team activities can be hard for highly sensitive children. They may want to alienate themselves from the other kids because they fear the bullying or don’t think that the other kids relate to them. This is where you come in. You need to help your kids become sociable with the other kids. Make play-dates with the kids that you know work well with your child’s behavior and have similar interests. Your child will feel more comfortable in situations that they are used to and enjoy. You may soon find that they are enjoying the sociable times with friends and you may even begin to see improvement in their behavior as time goes on.
As all children do, a highly sensitive child needs boundaries. When they act out or refuse to follow the rules, you need to be the parent and not let them control the situation. While it may be scary at first by thinking that you are just elevating the situation, you need to learn how to create limits for your children without screaming back. Create the boundaries by setting the rules of the house and temper that they are allowed to withhold. If they act out or refuse to follow the rules, gently remind them of their boundaries that they agreed on. Gentle discipline will go a long way compared to lashing out at them. Remember, your child has a gift of understanding too. You may be surprised at how well that gentle discipline will work once they assess the situation.