I started taking her to our family doctor who referred us to a psychiatrist. Before we for in to the psychiatrist we went to 4 or 5 sessions with a therapist. The psychiatrist has diagnosed her with anxiety disorder and prescribed Zoloft. She stopped going to school last February and only managed to get 1 credit in Grade 9.
She started attending an "alternative" program in September. The school only has 21 students and 4 teachers. There is very little school structure. The idea is to allow the student to catch up on missed work and prepare for returning to "normal" high school the following year. At first this program seemed to be working but steadily her attendance decline and she has not been back since Christmas vacation. They have now kicked her out of the program and she has been sent back to her "home" school.
The guidance counselor worked out a schedule where she can complete her English and Geography credits that she started at the alternative school, she then has lunch and a free period, final class is math. She went 1 day and this morning said she hated it there and nothing had changed. I've tried to impress upon her that the high scvhool won't change but she has to make changes.
She has no friends and never leaves the house (other than to go to school), she gets no phone calls and does not socialize at all. The only activity she does is use the computer. I threaten to take that away, I've taken it away and gave it back...I just don't know what to do. I think her lack of social skill has led to this. She feels lonely and lost at high school. Can anyone help?"
Denise's thoughts: "That does not sound like a lack of social skills. It sounds like she has an anxiety problem that she isn't able to cope with. Is she continuing to see her doctors? and therapists? She really needs to.
As important as school is, not going isn't the problem. Her health is and not going to school is a symptom. While it seems like the problem was fixed, it isn't if the symptom is still present. Her case needs to be re-evaluated."
Asking our community: What are your thoughts? Have you dealt with this problem? Can you share words of wisdom? If not, how about some support? Let us know in the comments area.