Big life transitions are hard, says Annalisa Barbieri. Maybe you are worried about him leaving you as he heads into adulthood
I’m 54 and happily married, with a 15-year-old son. In the past, I didn’t have maternal feelings, but since having my son, I feel as if an extreme emotional switch has been turned on. I used to be unafraid of dying, but that changed after he was born, and I now suffer with extreme anxiety about dying and leaving him.
My parents are healthy, but I also dread them dying. I keep this to myself, as my husband’s mother died when he was 14; that is still fresh in his mind, although he deals with it well. In more level-headed times, I rationalise that our son will be OK. He is a clever young man who will be fine, but I need to break out of this vicious circle of overemotional despair.
I’m terrified that I will die, leaving my son. How can I cope?