Bringing Up Britain


12Generation Anxious20190711

It’s a crippling feeling of unease, where worry and fear dominate your thoughts. You may feel restless, tense, with an increased heart rate and heavier breathing. These are all symptoms of anxiety – and it’s currently the most common emotional disorder in children - 7.2 per cent of 5-19 year olds have been diagnosed with anxiety in England alone. In addition, there are many more children with less severe anxiety who are nevertheless distressed and may struggle to function. According to England’s best source on trends in child mental health, it’s a condition that’s on the increase amongst school age children, The research from NHS Digital also indicates a particularly worrying problem amongst teenage girls and young women – rates increase with age, with around one in eight 17-19 year olds suffering from anxiety.

What’s happening in the lives of our children that might be causing and adding to their anxiety. Are they really more anxious, or are we as parents passing on own fears and worries - and becoming more eager to get them diagnosed? What is ‘normal’ anxiety through childhood, how can it be used in a positive way, and how can we spot when it starts to get out of control. We’ll hear from one young woman Saira who has struggled with anxiety throughout her teens, and find out the negative impact it can have on family life, social life and school life if not treated properly. Plus, we visit the parenting workshop offering top tips to mums and dads worried about their kids’ anxious behaviour.

Next in the series Mariella will tackling lying: the best way to negotiate the tangled web of a deceit in a post truth world. And also coming up, parents v teachers. We discuss whether parents are abdicating their responsibilities and leaving teachers to perform duties best done in the home, and find out why this is one relationship they should really be prioritising.

Producer: Katy Takatsuki

How to parent an anxious child.

Mariella Frostrup hosts a debate about parenting with families, experts and policy-makers

12Liar Liar20190718

When should we celebrate deception and when be concerned we might have a compulsive liar in the family?

Mariella Frostrup explores why our children lie, asking how best to bring up children into a post-truth world.

She hears research that highlights how bad parents are at spotting their own children’s lies, new ways that work to encourage honesty and how punishing a liar can often backfire.

Parents walk a fine line when they expect truth from their children while lying themselves. A new study exposes the impact our deceit can have on young children and Melissa Guida-Richards tells the heart wrenching moment she discovered the truth about herself, the shock of finding her whole identity had been built on her parents’ lies.

But when are children ready for those big truths, how should we respond to difficult questions about death, divorce or terrorism?

Is lying a necessity that makes the world go round or are we on a slippery slope, where our small lies are escalating without us noticing?

Teasing apart the tangled web of deceit with Mariella are Chartered Psychologist, Dr Sarah Kuppen, Senior Lecturer in Developmental Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University, Dr Angharad Rudkin, Clinical Psychologist at the University of Southampton, Dr Hannah Cassidy, Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychology at the University of Brighton, and Ian Leslie, author of Born Liars.

Mariella Frostrup asks how best to raise children into a post-truth world.

Mariella Frostrup hosts a debate about parenting with families, experts and policy-makers