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Nearly 5 year old afraid of balloons

(13 Posts)
albert Thu 17-Mar-05 11:10:35

DS has been invited to many birthday parties recently, including one to be held on Monday. He has told me he doesn't want to go because he is afraid of the balloons (TBH I was the same at his age for some reason). Whilst I don't mind at all if we don't go I wonder if anyone else has had this problem and how they solved it. He is truely terrified when kids pop the balloons and will only stay with me on my lap, I can feel his little heart pounding away and I feel so sad on the fun he is missing out. Normally he is very sociable, friendly and with not a care in the world so this is totaly out of character for him. At the last party when the kids were playing football outside one child ran onto the pitch with a balloon and DS raced off the pitch to find me in terror.

starlover Thu 17-Mar-05 11:25:43

awww, I really feel for him!

My mum has a phobia of balloons... unfortunately she won't even try and do anything about it! She won't go in shops that have balloons in and one time we were in a restaurant and a kid on the next table got given a balloon and we had to ask to be It then says that the other way round is right occiput posterior..moved!!!

erm yeah, not much help really am i? But I have researched it a teeny bit and it is a recognised phobia and there are treatments you can get (aversion therapy etc)... not sure if suitable for a young child but hopefully someone else here can be a bit more helpful!

sacha3taylor Thu 17-Mar-05 11:26:53

I hate going to parties with ds as I'm still scared of ballons at 23!!!!!!!!!!!!!

sacha3taylor Thu 17-Mar-05 11:27:45

And party poppers
christmas crackers

Do you notice a pattern forming

Pamina3 Thu 17-Mar-05 11:29:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ponygirl Thu 17-Mar-05 11:35:45

Hi albert. My dd (4.2) is the same, can't bear balloons. Or fireworks or anything else that goes bang. We haven't found a solution, I'm afraid, but if she goes to a party I always tell the person having the party and then at least they're prepared if she gets upset when one goes bang! I think we've had a slight improvement with time: back in November we had to take her out of a party because a balloon had burst but in January she did manage to calm down after a burst and join back in. It was just a case of lots of reassurance I'm afraid. We're not home and dry yet, but I hope the improvement will continue. I don't want dd to miss out on stuff just because of this. Good luck with it!

albert Thu 17-Mar-05 11:47:20

I wouldn't say he is afraid of balloons per se, only the rubbbery ones when they are blown up. It is the popping he hates. He will quite happily 'ping' deflated rubber ballons around the house and loved his helium balloon when we bought it for him (we had to stick it in the scrap book when it went down!) The problem with telling the party Mums (there are 2, it's a joint party in a big hall) is a)they think I'm an alien because I'm not Italian (I live in Italy) b)they think I'm wierd because I work and am not a SAHM, on top of which my Italian is highly inaccurate. I was wondering whether DS might like to try popping some balloons himself to see what it's like - or do you think this would traumatise him even more?

Arabica Thu 17-Mar-05 11:50:13

sacha3, me too, me too! If the balloon/popper goes off without me knowing it's there, I'm OK. The problem is if I can see it and know there's likely to be a bang at some unpredictable time in the future. That's the tension I can't handle. I can just about do kids' parties but it's a struggle. Unfortunately, I have had the phobia all my life and never been able to cure it, so I have no advice to to respect your child's phobia and not force him to stay in a room with balloons if he is really scared of them.

piffle Thu 17-Mar-05 11:55:04

I'm a bit scared of balloons too, I go mad if one pops it makes me shake, also the noise they make while being scrunched in hands
I do blow them up and have them round for parties but always get rid promptly
my ds 11yo thinks I'm crackers

sacha3taylor Thu 17-Mar-05 12:00:00

I forgot fireworks - scared of them as well!!!!!!!!

KarenThirl Thu 17-Mar-05 13:06:37

My sister is still scared of balloons, and she's 50 next year.

Arabica Thu 17-Mar-05 13:59:41

oh yes, hate fireworks, and thunderstorms, and if I am watching a play and there is a tense scene where people are pointing guns at one another I'm so terrified I have to leave the audience. In fact I have to ring the theatre up to check there aren't going to be any guns or other explosions before I even feel safe enough to book.

starlover Thu 17-Mar-05 15:48:12

Albert... my mum is the same. She is fine with helium balloons, but can't stand the rubber ones. And again it is a case of being frightened that they will pop, rather than a fear of the actual object.

I think if you could get him to play with some balloons at home, blow one up maybe and pop one then his fear may ease off a little...
just let him do what he is comfortable with.

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