Today I experienced a strange sensation after we said goodbye to our daughter on her first day of Primary school. I felt a strange twinge in my stomach that didn't go as quick as I thought it would. I later felt comforted when I learnt that quite a few other mothers also felt the same, a couple of them even had tears in their eyes.

Why is this happening? Can anybody throw some light on the matter? There is nothing different than when she attended Pre-school at the same campus, (where she has been for two years already)

Am I feeling my daughters anxiousness, or am I being emotional ?

asked 14 Sep '10, 12:10

Emi's gravatar image

accept rate: 19%


Congratulations, you're now a fully grown-up parent ;)

(15 Sep '10, 07:59) brandstaetter

Ha ha that's a great comment... just wait till yours start! Its totally bewildering!

(15 Sep '10, 08:29) Emi

I wasn't bothered when my two boys started pre-school and then primary school. I really hated leaving my youngest (girl) at pre-school (thankfully it was normally mum's job, I was at work), wasn't so bothered by her going to school though. My eldest just started senior school, I was worrying about him all day.

(15 Sep '10, 11:43) pipthegeek

+1 @pipthegeek, I nearly worried myself sick when my older two started high school.

(17 Sep '10, 04:12) Neen

From a father's perspective. I felt the same way, and I'm starting to dread my oldest daughter attending school for the first time next year.

Personally I think it's separation anxiety. We've been able to be there for just about everything for so long, been able to sensor her environment to some respect, keep her away from rude children, or at least be right there to console her, or explain it away. Now she'll be gone for like 7 hours a day, and we have zero control over what goes on during that time. (At least that's how it feels)

I can justify it, or put some kind of clinical spin on it all day, but the fact of the matter is, it gives me the willies every time as well. And I don't think it'll ever go away, I seem to get it every time my kids venture further into being their own person and growing up.


answered 27 Sep '10, 23:19

Jeff%202's gravatar image

Jeff 2
accept rate: 35%


+1 @Jeff "And I don't think it'll ever go away, I seem to get it every time my kids venture further into being their own person and growing up." Yup, kicks me in the gut everytime, too.

(28 Sep '10, 02:04) Neen

How was school for you?

I hated it, from beginning to end (well, that's how I've ended up remembering anyway), and was always happier at home than at school.

I think this coloured my experience of my daughter's first day heavily. But I put on a brave face, and when she looked a bit wobbly, I gave a her big smile and she gave me a small one back.

Just as well, because if she'd lost it, I would have too...

Her first day back after the summer holidays went swimmingly (I seem to recall crying every year). So, whaddayaknow? She's not me :)


answered 14 Sep '10, 12:38

Benjol's gravatar image

accept rate: 5%

+1 Thanks for the honesty Benjol, yeap me too. Did feel strange not remembering my own first day at all, and probably thats down to not having fond memories I guess.

(14 Sep '10, 12:51) Emi

For me it was just one of those bitter-sweet parent moments, you know? So terribly proud of my new "big kid", but Lord, didn't I just bring him home from the hospital and carry him into the house for the first time yesterday?

(Wait for High School Graduation, the conflicting emotions that day can wring you out and leave you gasping!)


answered 15 Sep '10, 04:55

Neen's gravatar image

accept rate: 30%

+1 Thanks for the this emotional roller coaster ride type feeling is going to creep up every now and again.

(15 Sep '10, 06:09) Emi

I expect it will continue well past school. Moving out, getting married, and the big one... becoming a grandparent.

(15 Sep '10, 11:45) pipthegeek

Yup, Emi, and the hills keep getting steeper. My oldest started University last week. He's fine, I'm a wreck.

(17 Sep '10, 04:16) Neen

I felt the same way when my kids started kindergarten, but last month my son started grade 6 at a new school where he didn't know anyone, and my wife and I were way more nervous about that - even more than he was. In kindergarten, the teacher will make sure that someone plays with him, that nobody's mean to him, coddle him if he needs coddling, stuff like that.

In grade 6 though, you're on your own, and he's not the most self-advocating of kids. He'll wait for other kids to invite him to play with them rather than just walking up and saying "Hi, can I play with you guys?", so we were nervous that he'd be "that new kid that doesn't talk to anybody".

I agree with Jeff - separation anxiety. Up until now, you've probably known exactly where your kid was and what they were doing 24/7, and now you need to trust someone you've never met with your kid.


answered 03 Oct '10, 12:51

Graeme's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

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Asked: 14 Sep '10, 12:10

Seen: 3,489 times

Last updated: 03 Oct '10, 12:51