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Helping Your Child Face Their Fears



Halloween is here and you know what that means. Goblins and ghouls, witches and monsters are all out. Although dressing up for Halloween can definitely be a fun time, this creepy holiday can also remind your children of some of their fears. If your child is terrified of a monster living in their closet, then that zombie walking down the street can bring those fears to life. Instead of letting these fears take over your child’s life, these tips will help your child face their fears.


Be Understanding

Although you might think it’s silly that your child is terrified of caterpillars, it’s important that you are sympathetic to these fears. Some fears are unexplainable, and judgment on your part can make your child become even more fearful. To help prevent this, you’ll need to be understanding of the fears.

Talk about It

Once you know what your child is afraid of and you accept the fact, you’re ready to start talking about your child’s fears. Start a conversation with your child and ask them why they’re afraid of monsters. It could be they saw a movie or commercial that terrified them. The more you talk to your child about their fears, the more comfortable your child will feel.

Take Small Steps

If your child is terrified of clowns, you’re not going to jump out of a closet wearing face makeup and a wig. Although you won’t want to terrify your child even more, you do want to expose them to their fears. This exposure should be gradual, starting with something small like drawing a picture of their fear. After each small step, your child will feel more comfortable with their fear, until one day, they are no longer afraid anymore. If needed, you can set goals for your child to strive for. For example, one goal could be to stand in the same room as their fear. If your child is able to do this, they should receive a prize or incentive to help encourage future encounters.

Don’t Push It

Although you want to slowly expose your child to their fears, you don’t want to push the issue too hard. If you push before your child is ready, you can do permanent damage that can last even into adulthood.

If you want to help your child face their fears this Halloween, you’ll need to follow these tips.

What are some ways you help your children face their fears?


Annmarie John
29 Comments
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29 comments:

  1. Definitely great advice and will say Lily is more then not afraid of heights and going on high slides and such. We totally don't push it and just go with it as much as possible. Thank you though for some further insight today.

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  2. I am a middle of the roader. I don't shield my girls but I don't push it but I make them face their fears. We will purposely walk up to a 'scary' decoration and pretend to hit it and tickle it just to show them it's not real and not worth being scared about. Our hardest was our 1st daughter but her fear passed.

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  3. I love that you said not to push it. Sometimes if they're scared, they're scared. Just being understanding and supportive is all you can do.

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  4. Talking about what scares you can often be one of the best ways. Just getting it out there helps so much.

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  5. I believe communication proves a vital role in this situation - in no matter what situation. :)

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  6. I think small steps like that is very key. Repeated exposure in safe doses helps to minimize the scare.

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  7. Very great tips! I always think communication is the best, sitting and talking it through can help a lot.

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  8. My kids were both scared of everything as kids. Helping them face their fears took time and patience, but it was so worth it.

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  9. My son is afraid of fireworks and the dark all of a sudden. I hope he grows out of it!

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  10. For me, showing them there is nothing to be scared of is the most important. Acknowledging their fears and showing them it will be okay is what I try to do.

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  11. It is so hard and I hate when I see parents telling their children they are being ridiculous to be afraid of something. I love these tips, listening to your child is so important, supporting them is crucial.

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  12. I don't have children so its not a bridge I have had to cross yet. However I do love these tips. x

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  13. Great tips. Halloween can be a scary time for kids, and it's so important to listen to them and not brush aside their fears.

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  14. I love this! I needed to read this today of all days too! Thank you

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  15. My nephew is afraid of the dark and has to sleep with a night light. We don't push him but would really love for him to be not so afraid and I don't push him.

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  16. Goodness, I'm still terrified of birds and haven't been able to face that LOL I guess I should do that first before I attempt to help anyone else, ha!

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  17. Great tips. Communication is best. I find that letting the child know they are not alone is another good tip.

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  18. I def. don't push, and you're right pushing even with good intentions can lead to lifelong challenges. When I was a kid I was forced into a haunted house because the fam. insisted I would love it. I ended up crying and leaving through a side door...passerbys laughing at me, hahaha. I have never returned to one, and won't even go in today, though the rest of the family will happily go in with my husband.

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  19. This is a great post. Facing your fears is a great life long lesson to learn.

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  20. I don't have kids yet, but I'd slowly desensitive them based on their comfort. I used to hate needles/shots & I'm slowly getting rid of that fear :)

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  21. I try getting books about the subject. I think showing how every day or main stream something is takes away the taboo of it all

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  22. Seems I was lots more fearless when my kids were young and I had to protect them and teach them not to be afraid. Now...ehhh.. and I do remember being scared to death of our neighbor when I was five or six because he threatened to squirt me with a water hose...and my parents tried to push me to like him and it made it worse.

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  23. I think these are great tips for every issue a child has. It's all about communication, understanding, and flexibility (to let them be who they are). Great post!

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  24. My daughter is afraid of the dark and while she doesn't know this, I am too! LOL I still tell her there's nothing to be afraid of.

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  25. Only my youngest gets scared & only from masks. Which is hard to avoid during trick or treat. Maybe next year will be a bit better for her since she'll be a bit older to understand better.

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  26. Reassuring your child that you will be there is also important in my opinion .

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  27. My son hate roller coaster. It's his big fear next to heights. This past year he flew and rode a roller coaster after months of talking and preparing.

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  28. We would try to gently nudge the kids toward there fear. My daughter was scared of spiders so first we looked up all the spiders in our area to show her that most were harmless and she should not be afraid. We went to the pet store so she could look at the spiders they had there.

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  29. I help my children facing their fears by rationalizing them, validating them and telling them that it's okay to be afraid sometimes.

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[name=AnnMarie John] [img=https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-X9gUeVik-ZY/WJjwNTOobII/AAAAAAABTJ4/qEhU0n62_AIo-j6-6LA2OFOr44lKCHASwCLcB/s100/AnnMarie%2BJohn%2BHeadshot.JPG] [description=AnnMarie John is a lifestyle blogger, mom of 4, retired army veteran and a huge Disney lover. Formerly from the beautiful island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean and now living in colorful Colorado, she loves sharing her opinions on everything, crafting and food.] (facebook=http://www.facebook.com/theannmariejohn) (instagram=http://www.instagram.com/theannmariejohn) (twitter=http://www.twitter.com/theannmariejohn) (pinterest=http://www.pinterest.com/theannmariejohn) (email=mailto:annmarie@annmariejohn.com)

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