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.
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?