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28

Experiencing failure at something (or even success but not being the best) and finding that it's OK, and even something can help him find ways to improve and be better in the future, would help. Rock climbing, with appropriate safety measures, can teach a lot here (as can some other sports). Reframing not even trying as failure might help too. If he ...


22

He may very well feel a little protective of his dad. Six-year-olds are more perceptive than most people give them credit for. He knows his biological dad probably isn't the greatest, and he knows that you're awesome comparatively. He's probably looking for ways that his dad "beats" you to put it in 6-year-old terms. His dad is taller than you and has ...


10

If he's afraid of not being the best at everything, I'd teach him about specialization. Point out how silly it would be if we had doctors building roads and bridges, or firemen teaching classes at school, or chefs playing baseball on TV! (Wait for him to laugh at the mental image.) People have things that they're good at, and things that they're not good ...


8

This could very well be related to the work of Carol Dweck. While her work is fascinating and nuanced, the TL;DR is that children praised for intelligence restrict themselves to endeavors the think are likely to succeed, shying away from any activities they might be less than a stellar success at (citing the same fears as your colleague's son). Children ...


8

They covered this situation in some depth at our foster parenting and adoption classes. Unfortunately, they don't have step-parenting classes. The key points are: Love is not a zero-sum thing. He can love his biological father significantly without reducing one iota the love he has for you. His biological father is a part of him, a large part of his ...


8

I think that you are doing a great job by keeping this kind of posture: not telling that his dad is a looser, that he is lucky to have 2 dads, etc. He is in a delicate situation: he has a biological dad, he knows him, he likes/loves him, and he is understanding why you replaced him. To know why you are in his place, he will make some comparisions, trying to ...


4

I am so glad I found your question! I have been in 3 mathematics competitions in my life (I have a BA in Mathematics, Magna Cum Laude). Additionally, I have competed in other competitions from computer programming to spelling... none of them are like any others and they all cause a different type of anxiety. The more one knows about mathematics, the more ...


3

I think you have to make him understand that he can't be the best everywhere and win everything. But it's OK, look his parents aren't the best and they are happy. They will love him even if he is not the best. Does he have a favourite sports team? Try to make him understand that sometimes his team lose, but it's OK. He can't do nothing for the rest of his ...


3

All children go through a phase of 'gloating' at some point. I think your idea of teaching sporting behaviour is the right approach. We did this with our kids-when they were young they all had phases of gloating about winning, but we educated them to behave in a sporting manner and backed off on letting them win so they began to get approval from us for ...


2

As a cub scout leader, I have seen similar behaviours in some kids. I would suggest you try to re-acquaint your kid with playing (games) adding an emphasis on developing his sense of humour. It seems to me that he needs to learn to laugh at himself and it will be easier to get him there by having him laugh at other silly stuff. Games can also provide a ...


2

My wife and I have nine children, and one of them has a little bit of that symptom. He is 10 years old, and is a good competitive distance runner - 19:47 in the 5K on the road, 5:42 mile on the track, district champion in the 1500 meters in his age group. He is extremely competitive and is constantly trying to run his siblings into the ground in training ...


2

Ask him what emotion he feels most about the event - fear? Shame? Guilt? Anxiety? Ask him what thought is attached to that emotion - "i will fail"; "people will laugh at me"; Ask him what evidence he has for those thoughts. Allow him to feel those emotions. They are real for him. Then talk to him. Ask him to think about alternatives. "Well, I am ...


2

While I was a very competitive child (and thus didn't have this sort of anxiety), one of the reasons was that I enjoyed finding out the areas I was more skilled in, and the areas I could focus on learning more about. I would suggest portraying the competition as an opportunity for him to find out how he compares to other students, and which areas he needs ...


2

My wife came up with a good solution, as usual. She arranged a meeting between our son and the coordinator of the event. After one of the practice sessions, the three of them talked about the competition and what it would feel like. She used an illustration of how people naturally fold their hands: Whether the fingers are crossed or clasped, everyone ...


2

Comparison is a good thing! which means he start to realize you are as important as his biological father. It's hard for both of you and your son, but I think only one thing matters: let him know he don't need to choose between you and biological father, that 's all! and let him know, he is so felicitous to have two dads. It's not hard to feel that you ...


1

I'm a foster parent, our kids are in foster care for good reasons, and yet ... they're torn and very loyal to their parents. They do a lot of lashing out at us. It takes comic forms including: You're not pretty like our mom, you don't wear enough makeup. ("Yes, your mom is very pretty." and she does wear rather a lot of makeup...) You have to use cookbooks ...


1

The general concept is to teach your son that failing is not a problem, but something everyone does every day, and in the end it is only a variation of learning. Technically you should try to associate that potential failure with something positive. The question is: what is your son afraid of? Failing in front of others or failing you? If it is the first, ...


1

That kind of anxiety usually stems from a fear of making mistakes in front of other people. He is likely imagining an unrealistic reaction of the spectators, where they focus on his mistakes out of proportion to his successes. Mostly he just needs to experience a few successful meets in order to get over his anxiety, but there are a few things that help a ...



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