I have been afraid (terrified really) of my younger kids getting sick since 2005 because of my older son’s experience (and subsequent experiences) with croup. But CBT is helping so much! Here is part one of the therapy I am doing. Less than a week after I filled this out, Isabella got roseola and I handled it really well (for me)!
The following are questions that evaluate my behavior, my thoughts, and my reasons for doing what I am doing (being scared of illness). This first post on CBT is about making a change. If you are in need of making a change – especially one relating to thought patterns – I highly recommend this type of therapy.
Characteristics that I have which can help me follow through with change:
Rate your motivation to change from 1-10:
10 on motivated to change!
Level of Change:
Preparation: planning and committing to change.
Describe a behavior you are considering changing:
I want to stop fearing that my kids will get sick, and I want to stop having anxiety when they are sick.
Good things about the behavior:
- I am cautious about where we go so as not to introduce more germs than necessary.
- We follow healthy hygiene habits to prevent illness.
- I stay on top of medication doses and rarely if ever forget a dose.
- I am in tune with the illness and know immediately when something has changed.
Not so good things about the behavior:
- I suffer from the physical discomfort of anxiety and fear before and during sickness.
- I feel like I’ve failed when they do get sick.
- It takes away some enjoyment from experiences we’re having if I worry about potential illness.
- It’s making me want the little ones to be older so they can outgrow the scary stuff but I’m wishing away their sweet years, which I regret.
Risks of not changing:
- I might be less careful about where we go which could cause more sickness.
Benefits of changing:
- I will have less physical stress and more peace.
- I won’t blame myself and feel guilt.
- My blood pressure won’t be affected so often.
- I will feel better.
Describe situations in the past where you were successful at change:
- Losing weight by changing portion sizes, increasing exercise, and changing types of food I ate.
- Becoming a better wife by choosing to be kind, responding with love, listening, and not getting defensive.
- No longer fearing c-sections by reading detailed information about the surgery, asking women questions about their experiences, researching opinions on it, and writing my findings.
- Becoming more open-minded about topics that used to really bother me by listening more and putting myself in others’ shoes.
Characteristics of Successful Changers:
Describe your intention to change and your optimism to change:
I will stop being afraid of my children getting sick. I will no longer feel fear and dread when one of them becomes ill. I will do my best to keep everyone well but then I will let go and have peace. When one of them gets sick, I will care for them to the best of my ability and then I will trust that they will get better in time. I will have confidence in the doctors’ abilities, the medicine’s potency, and God’s mighty hand in our lives.
Thanks for reading!