When confronted with a child’s fears, we often deal with them cursorily and push them out of our minds. But it is useful to remember that your child’s fears are very real and she lives with them day in and day out. Therefore it’s important to spend time, thought and discussion to put them to rest.
Fear of real situations
If your child is afraid of a bully, or fears an accident, first find out exactly what’s on her mind. What has the bully done or said to others? To your child? Did she witness an accident that scared her? Brainstorm and come up with different ways to allay her fears. Suggest several solutions and get her inputs. Ensure that she knows what to do in the worst-case scenario.
Fear of imaginary dangers
If fear of monsters or dark rooms is the problem, try to find out what exactly is bothering your child. A simple bedside torch or light could ward off fear of darkness. Advise her to switch on the light/torch every time she is afraid. Soon she will realise there is nothing to fear. Logical explanations may not work with younger children. Instead, suggest an imaginary friend, a real mommy or words which your child believes can effectively zap monsters away.