Peer Pressure and Pool Phobias

My little one is turning seven soon and I know how cliche this is, but it’s happening too fast! I’ve noticed so many new things being introduced to her like feeling stressed, bullying and a need to fit in (whether it be through her clothes, backpacks or what shows she likes to watch.) I noticed it the most this Halloween when I knew she desperately wanted to go as a superhero but opted for a more gender-neutral costume (vampire) so as not to be laughed at by the girls in the class (and also went with nothing princess-y so that she could still hold up her tomboy image with the boys). For this six year old nugget, the struggle was SO real last weekend! 

But back to this weekend, when she asked me a very important question (one, I hate to admit, I struggled to answer). My daughter has always had a huge phobia of the water and still doesn’t know how to swim (which gives me drowning-related anxiety attacks mid-night, most nights) and I’ve tried taking her to several different classes (kicking and screaming, mind you) and this weekend was our attempt with instructor number four. This time the poor angel didn’t fight me, instead she solemnly nodded and said “I know mama, I really need to learn this time. But what do I tell myself when i’m scared but I still have to do something?” 

What do you guys think? What mantras or statements do you teach your kids when they feel this way (whether it be tackling a phobia or going to the doctor or dentist)? 

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