What would you do?
Ds (just turned 2) is bored by super simple bedtime books, but seems to be getting upset with the content of more advanced books. For example his grandpa got him this 3D adaptation of the Jungle Book. He loves it and requests to read it often, but he gets upset with the concept of the tiger wanting to eat Mowgli. He loves Where the Wild Things Are, but is starting to describe the Wild Things as "scary." We have a collection of 4 tiny versions of Maurice Sendak books. One is Pierre, in which the boy says, "I don't care" to everything, so his parents leave him at home while they go to town, and he gets eaten up by a lion. At the end everything works out, but he seems to get stuck on the idea of the idea of "mommy and daddy leave Pierre and the lion eats him up." He keeps asking me to read it, but he gets truly weepy every time. My inclination is to read it to him and talk to him about it (let him know that the story is make believe, tell him that we would never leave him behind no matter what he did, etc.). I think he is in a developmental limbo, where he is working out what is real and what is pretend, understanding that there is danger in the world, and I want to help him work through it. I want to model calmness around scary topics so that he sees that we can work through his feelings together. I'm wondering though, if I ought to take some of those books out of rotation for a while...give him a break? Interested to hear some of your thoughts.