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Help needed with what 3 year olds are capable of
8

JeremyCorbynsBeard · 04/11/2018 08:29

Hi I'm trying to write a scene which involves a 3 year old girl. Despite having 2 children of my own I can't remember what they could do at what age!

In my novel, she comes across someone dead on the floor. Is it reasonable that she would try to wake her? Would she try to help in some way, realising there's something wrong? Would she go for help?

Any advice/thoughts much appreciated. Thanks.

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Coldhandscoldheart · 04/11/2018 08:32

It might depend if she knew th person? Also if just three, or nearly four? I think it’s the sort of thing where that year makes quite a big difference in their understanding,
So you hear about three year olds phoning ambulances for parents in diabetic comas, but they’ve usually been taught to do that.

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PukousMucous · 04/11/2018 09:00

I suspect that if my 3 year old found someone she knew dead on the floor she would try and wake them up. When unsuccessful she would then wander off and do something herself. It would only be when she wanted a drink or something she would start to get distressed.

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JeremyCorbynsBeard · 04/11/2018 14:58

Thanks so much for your replies. Yes, it is someone she knows. I'm trying to make her young enough to only have a vague recollection of it 40 years later.

I'll send you all a free copy when it becomes a best seller SmileGrin

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Mondaytired · 04/11/2018 15:00

My 3 year old if it was me husband or his brother would probably be trying to ask us a question.. he’d ask this repeatedly (as he does when we are pretending to be asleep) ask why we aren’t answering... get upset as to why we aren’t answering... and probably just sit with us till we did.
Someone he doesn’t know... meh don’t think he’d have any interest?!

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Swanhild · 04/11/2018 20:24

What do you need her to do for the plot?

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Coldhandscoldheart · 04/11/2018 20:33

Ooh. Vague recollections. You might find it of interest to read some of the previous threads on what people remember from how young.
I remember one or two things (not traumatic) from about 18months old, and ten some things from three.
But trauma does funny things to people. There are some more recent somewhat traumatic things that I don’t really remember precise details of.

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LivininaBox · 04/11/2018 20:42

When I was trying to sleep the other day, my 2 year old asked me if I was dead! But he doesn't really know what it means.

I think a 3 year old wouldnt try to help the person as they wouldn't understand help was needed, but if someone called at the house, eg postman, they might ask that person for help.

There was a sad case in Australia years ago where two parents were shot dead at home, it was only discovered when someone called the house and spoke to the young children some days later. You could try looking that up for background. I saw it on a TV programme years ago about crimes solved by forensic evidence.

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ambereeree · 08/12/2018 17:21

I think my 3 year old would think the person was playing a game and get upset if he or she wouldn't respond to being poked shouted at. Of course only if she knew the person.

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