As mental health awareness continues to grow, many adults find it necessary to take a day off every so often when they need a break to take care for themselves.
But should children also be allowed mental health days?
A mom’s recent CBC column explains why she let her 10-year-old daughter take the day off.
“She looked exhausted and I knew she was in a funk with some of her school friends,” wrote Kelly Pedro. “So when, after trying to cajole her out of bed for 10 minutes, she rolled over with pleading eyes and asked: ‘Can I please just stay home today?’ I caved and said yes.”
Her daughter promptly went back to sleep and stayed in bed for most of the day.
“I said yes because I knew that even though she wasn’t obviously physically sick, mentally, she was under the weather,” the mom of three continued.
Since then, Pedro has let her children have one day off from school every year as a “mental health day.”
She’s not the only mom who has spoken out about letting kids take the time they need to take care of themselves.
“I know how good it feels to take a step back once in a while, and I give myself permission to do exactly that when I need to,” wrote Rita Templeton on Scary Mommy. “So I want my kids to know that there’s nothing wrong with taking care of themselves, and prioritizing their mental well-being over other obligations sometimes.”
“I want to help them recognize when they need to take time out to recharge their heart, mind and soul,” Bianca Wordley wrote on Essentially Kids. “It’s important to show them that mental health is as important as physical health, and taking a day off here-and-there to work on feeling better mentally should never be a source of shame.”
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, in any given year, one in five Canadians will personally experience a mental health problem or illness and many employers encourage employees to take a day if they so need it.
Do you think kids should also be allowed a mental health day? Vote below and leave a comment.