Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Campsickness: No homesick campers here!

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If you've recently sent a child off to summer camp, then this may interest you. Rather than feeling homesick upon arrival at summer camp, many kids are instead feeling sad when they return home -- a phenomenon known as campsickness. When pre-teens return from one to several weeks away, they may have a hard time adjusting to their old routines at home and miss their new friends from camp.

Mental health experts say that what the kids are experiencing truly is a mild grieving process. And while it may be hard for parents to understand, the best tact to take seems to be acknowledging that what the kids are feeling is real and opening the door to conversation. Helping kids fall back into their normal responsibilities and obligations while still being sensitive to their feelings will help them walk through this normal, healthy process unscathed.

So if you have the kind of kid who won't be sending you any "I want to come home!" sort of letters, keep your eye out for sullenness, surliness, or general sadness when your child returns.

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