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toddler phobia

(5 Posts)
Marmoset2015 Wed 04-Oct-17 20:38:11

Hi all, Im wondering if anyone has any advice!
My two year old started being terrified of bears coming to get her a few days ago. It started when she lay on her back to have her nappy changed and she ended up with her arms around my neck clawing to be as close to me as possible and screaming, because she heard a noise that she thought was a bear.
It has got gradually worse, its now meaning that she rarely wants me to put her down and if I do, she screams mummy mummy and becomes severely distressed, citing bears as a reason. Dressing her, changing her, and now putting her to bed are really difficult.
She is fine when she goes to nursery school and they have no difficulty with her. But her lunchtime naps are affected and she sleeps for 30 minutes and the wakes up crying.
It does coincide with her father (from whom I am separated) being back to visit her after not seeing her for some weeks. She was fine at the beginning of the week with him, but now only wants me to handle her.
She has had a lot of change in the last three months moving countries, and settling into nursery but was finally very happy and settled until about ten days ago.
Tonight was at its worse, she was impossible to bath, change or put down. She was visibly terrified and distressed and it was very hard to calm her down.
She always loved the bear hunt book and always used to want to pretend we were going on a bear hunt, for months and months with no problems.
I am concerned its linked to circumstances in her life, does anyone have any advice? Should I be taking this to a professional?
Any thoughts, thank you

WhatWouldGenghisDo Wed 04-Oct-17 22:17:06

It's really normal for toddlers to suddenly develop random fears (bears / monkeys / pirates /whatever) as they begin to realise what a big and complicated place the world is and how small and helpless they are. I should think you're right that your dd is also more anxious than usual because of the changes she's been through recently.

I don't think you need to worry about it, certainly not after just a few days. If she sees that you are relaxed that will reassure her more quickly than anything. I suggest giving her lots of cuddles and positive attention, reestablishing comforting routines and generally making sure everything feels safe and ok. Give her a chance to process it all and get used to the new regime and the likelihood is that things will settle down pretty quickly.

Santawontbelong Wed 04-Oct-17 22:18:10

Could you take her to a build a bear shop? Choose her very own special bear?

Marmoset2015 Thu 05-Oct-17 12:38:06

@WhatWouldGenghisDo Thanks for the advice, I think you're right. It seems very tough to see them so distressed and upset. I just hope that it doesn't last for too long, it seems to be getting worse not better.
Maybe when her father has gone and she's back to normal routines it will disappear.

Marmoset2015 Thu 05-Oct-17 12:38:51

@santawontbelong I haven't heard of that, I will look into it. Thanks!

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