Ask Dr. Orloff

Parenting tips for highly sensitive empathic children

Question: Dear Dr. Orloff,

How can I help my empathic 6 year old daughter not to absorb other children's negative energies in the classroom, which can make her ill? We have spent a lot of time intuiting 'the right' new school environment for her, but is home schooling better for empathic kids? Thank you very much for your time and your wonderful work.
Catherine from Australia



Answer: Dear Catherine,

Empathic children need to have their sensitivities respected and encouraged by the school. If this can happen in a school environment it can be very helpful. It's a wonderful thing to have empathy encouraged as part of the educational system. The advantage of this is that the child learns to socialize with like minded children and peers. This can foster creativity and confidence. But home schooling is positive in certain cases where you intuitively tune in and feel this will be most helpful for the child. I applaud your efforts to tune in to find the right school for your daughter. Try that and see how it goes. You can always switch to home schooling later.
All best,
Judith

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