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What do immigrant children worry about?

Immigration can be hard on kids. Have you ever wondered what they worry about, even when they live in the U.S.? For kids who have immigrated and those whose parents have immigrated, their fears can be surprisingly adult.

For example, one child talked about being afraid of deportation to Mexico. That child noted that he or she was from the United States, not Mexico, and did not speak any Spanish, but only English.

Another child wrote about being afraid not of his or her own deportation, but being worried about what would happen to the child's mother or father. This was clearly inducing a lot of stress, not knowing if deportation was going to impact the entire family. Even when children wouldn't be taken and were born in the United States, losing family members is a threat that they worry about.

One expert noted that having a parent deported could be very harmful to a child. Some have trouble eating, sleeping, paying attention in school and keeping their emotions in check. Others are constantly worried and fearful, and they close down and seem more withdrawn. Their home lives can also suffer because the parent who is still in the United States is usually stressed out, as well.

While it's true that children often do not fully grasp the situation or understand the complexities of the law or the political landscape, it's clear that they still worry about many of the same things that adults are concerned with. For those who are facing the threat of deportation that could break up a family, it's important to know what legal options exist.

Source: Huffington Post, "This Is What Trump’s Immigration Crackdown Is Doing To School Kids," Roque Planas and Jessica Carro, accessed May 11, 2017

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