Dear Jess: Should I send my daughters to their school camp despite my fears?

The daunting questions of a first school camp.
The daunting questions of a first school camp. Photo: Stocksy

Q. My twin girls are in year 4 and this term they are due to attend a two-night school camp. They're both itching to go but I'm an emotional mess. I'm worried about everything from the bus crashing to them coming to harm while rock climbing or canoeing! Do I have to send them?

A. Darling Worrier, I'm not going to say "don't fret" as I understand that won't stop your mind from spiralling into the worse-case scenario. But please send your daughters to their camp. They want to go and it's important you let them take these gradual steps towards independence.

I'm also a helicopter parent and deal with my worries by drinking rosé and doing some sneaky online shopping! I don't recommend copying that, but I am working on modelling calm parenting so my girls don't inherit my anxiety. I know you can do that, too.

Jessica Rowe answers your questions.
Jessica Rowe answers your questions. Photo: Damian Bennett

Q. I live in an old apartment block of six units and my neighbour opposite cooks fish most evenings. Our whole stairwell smells like the fish markets and is particularly jarring of a morning. My neighbour has the right to cook whatever he wishes but I'm considering moving elsewhere as a result!

A. Nosy Neighbour, I can almost smell your unit block from the safety of my keyboard. Surely you have already opened any windows on the communal stairs as a way to flush out that lingering fishy stench?

Have you politely told your neighbour that his cooking habits, while healthy, are also suffocating? And perhaps you could purchase one of those plug-in deodorisers for the stairs. If all else fails, consider buying a cat. At least it will love the smell! 

These answers are simply my views, and I am far from perfect. I struggle through some days better than others with the help of my family, cats, chocolate and antidepressants. Unfortunately, I cannot personally reply to questions.

Contact me via Jessica.Rowe@fairfaxmedia.com.au. Instagram: @jessjrowe. Twitter: @JessRowe.