Questions tagged [fears]

Questions regarding analyzing, preventing, or helping a child cope with fearful things in their life.

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126
votes
11answers
40k views

I am 21 and I am terrified beyond belief of my father

I am a 21 year old female living in Egypt and I am beyond terrified of my own father...at least I think he is my father. To say it shortly, I think I might have been adopted at a young age and no one ...
36
votes
14answers
11k views

How to address my son’s fear of mostly passive objects, namely smoke detectors

My almost three-year-old son’s room, as well as our sleeping room, is equipped with a smoke detector. A few weeks ago, the one in our sleeping room went off and was beeping very loudly for ten seconds ...
31
votes
5answers
7k views

How to explain Paris terrorist attack to primary school age children?

How can I explain terrorism and the recent radical Muslim shootings in Paris to my primary school age children? They have obviously noticed the media reports and they saw our local TV tower lit up ...
26
votes
9answers
28k views

How do I help a child overcome fear of ghosts?

About a month ago we got two foster children, ages 9 and 7. The younger one often has nightmares, and in the daytime has many fears. She won't take a bath by herself and she is afraid of mirrors. We ...
25
votes
11answers
47k views

How to help a toddler overcome the fear of water on head?

My 22-month-old daughter absolutely hates getting her hair wet. At bathtime, she complains (crying, but without tears) when I pour water on her head in preparation for washing her hair (even if I'm ...
22
votes
6answers
131k views

Why is my baby suddenly screaming in the bath?

My baby has always loved bath-time, almost since he was born. He learned to splash when he was only a couple of months old and loves to play around with the water, and over the past few weeks I've ...
20
votes
5answers
1k views

Coping and overcoming a rational fear

On Friday my daughter was hit by a car while crossing the crosswalk to school. (Side note: she was released from the hospital and appears to be doing OK, but taking her to a Dr for a full eval ...
19
votes
5answers
1k views

My 6 year old daughter is afraid her Muslim friend will be deported if Trump is elected President

My 6 year old daughter has a best friend at school who is Muslim and from a Muslim family. She is aware of the Presidential race, presumably from news. To my surprise, she has tearfully told me that ...
18
votes
4answers
726 views

How to handle post traumatic stress with my 6yr old daughter?

4 weeks ago some weirdo shot at my balcony (probably for fun) with a gun used for practice. Anyway, the glass of my balcony door broke. At the same time my daughter of 6 was sitting just next to it, ...
16
votes
8answers
6k views

How to nurture my child to be fearless

I feel that my two-year-old kid is fearful since birth, or it is my own fear. This question arose when I compared him with other numerous children. As a father, I don't want him to fear anything. I ...
16
votes
8answers
7k views

How can I address toddler's fear of water over her face?

Our 2.5-year-old daughter used to love baths, playing in the pool and just playing with water. Now, she is terrified to bathe. It is a battle to even get her in the tub, let alone to try and clean her ...
15
votes
6answers
3k views

How to Teach That Following Rules is Not Always Good?

My 8 year old son has an issue with following rules a little too closely. He gets upset if rules and/or routine are broken. For instance, last night he was upset because a classmate was singing ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

What can help a seven year old boy cope with night terrors and being constantly afraid?

My son used to be very independent little boy without any fears. In the last two years his night terrors and fears have gotten out of control. He dreams about robots, house fires, tornadoes. The ...
14
votes
6answers
8k views

How do you explain to a 3-year-old what Halloween is?

Title says it all. Our 3-year-old son is old enough to realize that something weird is happening around Oct 31st, but not really old enough to understand complex explanations. Like most kids this ...
14
votes
6answers
18k views

I am 20, too scared of my father, and I no longer feel safe. What can I do?

I've had many episodes of full withdrawal from the family because I cannot face my father. Last night was another one of those episodes. We were eating dinner with the family when I made small talk ...
12
votes
3answers
10k views

Is my wife an over-protective parent and how does this influence my child?

My daughter is 10 months old. Since her birth, my wife has never even once left the baby with me alone. First it was breastfeeding, then other excuses. She's constantly around me. Constantly ...
12
votes
3answers
476 views

How do I resolve a child's anxiety for war?

Missile warning siren tests are going to be conducted in Hawaii once per month. Presumably the government will start distributing information on shelters and how to shelter in place, and some schools ...
11
votes
5answers
3k views

How to deal with toddler's fear of dogs?

My son used to be around our dog until she died, almost a year ago, when he was 11 months old. Since then, and up until last December, he'd gladly pet a dog whenever he had the occasion to, that is, ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

How to help my 8-year-old who can't sleep because she fears she doesn't get enough sleep?

My 8-year-old is so stressed out about not getting enough sleep that she can't sleep. When school started, the teacher explained to them that is is important to get 10 hours of sleep a night because ...
10
votes
2answers
329 views

Fear developing in three year old

I have a three and a half year old boy. We have been going to this theme park for years, he has gone on all of the rides which are age appropriate since a little more than one without any sign of fear....
10
votes
1answer
573 views

How to handle a 10 year-old's scary imaginings?

Our daughter has always been easily frightened, but a few days ago she "saw a face" in a bundle of blankets (in the middle of the day in a well-lit room) and became so scared that she couldn't bring ...
10
votes
1answer
558 views

How do I solve my brother's fear of a creepy video game character?

I was playing a creepy little indie video game the other day (Undertale) and my brother (who is 9 years old) happened to watch me play for a while, despite my warnings that it might be scary or ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I assuage my pre-teen's fear of flying

My parents are moving to Florida soon and have asked for my help moving their car. I thought it would be nice to take my pre-teen daughter (almost 12 yo) with me on the ride down for a short visit. ...
9
votes
6answers
2k views

How to (or should I even try to) break a zombie fixation for a three-year-old

I have two boys, one eleven, and one three. I don't know exactly how or when, but the 11-year-old has decided that it was a good idea to explain the the 3-year-old all about zombies. Of course he ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

How to help (and bathe) a toddler who is terrified of the plughole in the bath?

Our 2½-year old has very recently developed a fear of the plughole in the bath. She is not just afraid but properly terrified to the point that I bathed her in her baby brother's bathtub-in-a-bath ...
8
votes
7answers
6k views

How do I prevent my child from becoming frightened by “scary” stories?

I have a ten year old child who gets spooked to tears to sleep in his room alone because another child at school told him a nonsense story about Slender Man. The child added a few bits to the myth, ...
8
votes
2answers
459 views

Why is my toddler afraid of talking puppets?

My 2-year-old son enjoys having stuffed animals around him as comfort objects, as well as playing with toy humans and animals. Ever since the first time he saw a talking puppet (around 18 months old, ...
7
votes
9answers
30k views

If a 4 year old is afraid to swim is it better to keep trying or wait?

My son is afraid of swimming, and has been for a very long time. We first took him to baby swim classes and he never took to it like the other children in the class. I took him to swimming classes ...
7
votes
2answers
476 views

How do I help the neighbor's kids not be so scared of me?

My husband and I are in our early thirties and have no children. I don't really have much experience with kids. I am happy to talk to them but have never had any of my own so don't feel super ...
7
votes
1answer
186 views

How to help a 2 year old with a fear of airplanes?

My just-over-2 year old granddaughter is afraid of aircraft of all kinds passing overhead. No one knows why, and she isn't verbal enough to explain, though she is getting schooled in feeling words. ...
6
votes
4answers
704 views

Overcoming an irrational fear of long guns

My 10 year old daughter has developed an acute fear of long guns. This is problematic because we go shooting at the range where I've been showing her guns bigger than our little revolver. This is ...
6
votes
7answers
1k views

My child is afraid of death

My daughter is 13, and terrified of death. I'm Christian, and I believe there is a heaven, but she isn't religious- according to her, she's tried, but can't make herself Believe in anything. At first, ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

My 11 yr old has some irrational fears

I have a son that just recently turned 11. He still periodically calls for me or his father at night because of things like "hearing noises" or just "being scared" He also has a small fear of the dark,...
6
votes
1answer
248 views

How do I help a child who is afraid of the dark?

A 5 year old girl is afraid of the dark, to the point where she screams whenever the lights go out. How can we help her get over this fear?
6
votes
1answer
184 views

Disciplining: what to do when kid starts hiding his mischief?

We try to set well-defined/predictable and not-to-harsh consequences for mischief of our 4.5-year-old: timeouts, taking away toys, refusing to play, skipping story-time, etc., but no physical ...
6
votes
3answers
304 views

How to handle 3-year-old's fear of failure?

The boy is now nearly four years old, and he has a tendency to not wanting to try anything new or doing things he's not good at. Here are some examples: If you give him a coloring book and some ...
6
votes
2answers
272 views

What are effective strategies against social phobia?

Our 5 years old (in a month) daughter has excessive apprehension about being immerged in new environments with people (especially children) she doesn't know. Basically, she will cry her heart out ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

8-month old terrified of new caretakers

My 8-month old will hardly let anybody "new" pick him up, or spend time with him if his mother or I aren't present. His current nanny and one set of grandparents (which have spent a lot of time with ...
5
votes
5answers
733 views

How to encourage the toddler to not to be frightened of the dark?

I believe that the fear of dark, once sets in, doesn't leave easily. The toddler is 13 months old. She starts crying if left alone when the light goes off at night. She clings to me as long as the ...
5
votes
4answers
551 views

My 4 year old son always keeps something besides him when he sleeps. Is that normal?

My son always keeps something besides him while sleeping. It can be anything, not necessarily a toy. Does that mean he fears something?
5
votes
1answer
363 views

The toddler is being frightened of ghosts at daycare. How should I deal with the child before the fear sets in completely?

I can't make out who said this to her at daycare, and it doesn't matter since I don't have any control over the daycare people. Toddler is 2.6 years old. 3 days back the toddler told me that there ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Sudden fear of swimming!

My 2 and half year old girl has always loved swimmming we lived abroad in Spain for most of her life so she was always been in the water, head under or not, we got her some swimming lessons, she went ...
5
votes
1answer
125 views

What are good approaches to lessen fear of insects in a child?

One of my kids is extremely frightened of bugs. As in, if there's a fly/mosquito/bee in the room - far away from her - she will freeze up and refuse to move. If she's in small proximity, she gets uber-...
5
votes
1answer
403 views

11 year old fear of wetting pants

My 11 year old daughter has an irrational fear of wetting her pants from laughing too hard. It has apparently happened where this occurred in very small amounts, but now she has turned it into ...
5
votes
1answer
98 views

What to do about anxiety when going to school?

Our 4 year old started school this September (Reception, we live in the UK). Initially everything was very good, but then she started complaining that she is afraid to leave her parents when she ...
5
votes
1answer
177 views

How can I mitigate how my toddler has generalized a fear related to insects/flies?

I'm typically careful of not instilling needless fears in my toddler as I want her to be afraid of important danger and not everything and anything that might be dangerous. We went for a vacation ...
4
votes
3answers
469 views

How can I help my son overcome his fear of dogs so we can enjoy our time together with my puppy?

"Bob" is a divorced dad of a 5 year old boy, "Tom". Tom lives with his mother and also spends a lot of time with his grandma and great grandmother. Both Bob and his ex-wife work full-time and he only ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Explaining Thunder/Lightning to a preschooler

I have a very intelligent three (almost four) year old who has a mixed relationship with thunder and lightning (see an older question from me, for example). He likes seeing it, but is also afraid of ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

My 2 and half year old niece does not trust anyone else besides her mom and dad

My niece is 2 and half years old and she does not mix with anyone else. I am happy that she is like that with strangers but when it comes to family she is still the same. Does not play with other ...
4
votes
1answer
268 views

How do you gauge if a show, movie or story may be too frightening for your child?

My 2-and-a-half year old seems to be fond of shows that I would have expected to be too scary for someone his age. He loves to watch R.L. Stine's Goosebumps (he was introduced to it at daycare by ...