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my son will be 2 in three weeks.. he has always been very brave. in fact when he was an infant the only was to console him when he was upset was to nurse him or swing him very high back and forth back and forth. he has always loved swings and slides..

but lately he has been telling me he is "scared" that there are "monsters" downstairs and he always wants a light on at night..we went to the park today and he was afraid on the swing he kept saying " all fall down!" "scared" and he wanted me to "smooch" him every few seconds. usually he wants to stay in the swing for an hour. today it was about 45 seconds.

as far as i know he has never fallen from a swing or any other height. so why would he be all of a sudden so frightened of falling? and darkness and monsters?

does your toddler have these fears? is it just the age? im a first time momma and i want to make him feel safe in our world. i dont want him to be afraid.

fern
 

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Mamafern, i don't know if you read my most recent post on the nov/dec '02 thread but ds has been acting very differently lately too. he is suddenly shy of almost everyone, even people he knows. he always says 'shy' or 'scared' and wakes up at night crying saying scared. not exactly the same but a noticable difference, yk? well right now he's getting both top 2 yr. molars and i think that has something to do w/ it but maybe there's some 2 yr old changes going on. so no great advise just letting you know someone elses 2 yr old is having a hard time too.
 

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i did read your post. thanks
..i thought that maybe i would get more feedback posting a new thread since not many people read our dec mommas and babe's..

elwynn just woke up really upset and i felt his back gums and sure enugh there are 4 large lumps..molars! i felt a few days ago and there wasnt anything.no wonder he is a bit sad and scared. our babies are growing up so fast!
 

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I think it has to do with so many changes in their little lives...they aren't babies anymore but they aren't big kids either. Haley is suddenly afraid of vacuums, the dishwasher, public toilets flushing, trucks outside (not seeing them, hearing them) and other things that make scary noises. She also talks about monsters although she isn't afraid of them...she just says "Tell the monsters to go away" She has always been very shy around strangers and it is no different now. Oh and teething definitely plays a part. Poor Haley is the slowest teether in the universe (her 13th tooth JUST broke through and #14-16 are on their way) and they are giving her fits (they are the eye teeth) Sometimes we'll be playing or driving or something like that and she will suddenly just start screaming! Poor babes have so much going on they just can't process it all!
 

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From what I understand, fear is one of the emotions that transforms as they develop. In other words, they go from being afraid, perhaps, of loud noises, to strangers, to monsters, etc. If you think about it, it makes sense developmentally. Just as they are beginning to be able to imagine something that is not there (like a monster) they will start to feel afraid of them and have nightmares about them.

My DS (16 1/2 mo) is currently afraid of certain songs and other toddlers being suddenly loud or crying. The song thing took us a while to figure out, but we can tell when we see him stop what he's doing to listen, then crumpling into a cry. He stops the second we turn off the song. All of a sudden, recently, he grew afraid of the ABC song. It used to be his favorite (interestingly, though, he's not afraid of Twinkle, Twinkle Little star which has the same tune!) Who knows? He's also had nightmares before.

My point is this all sounds perfectly normal. If your DC is old enough, you can talk to him about what he's afraid of, without reinforcing it. There's a great section in Becoming the Parent You Want to Be about this.

Kerry, mama to Ezra 7/25/03
 

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I had a similar experience with my son a couple months after he turned two. He all of a sudden became afraid of things he wasn't before, especially going places where there were lots of other kids. He's calmed down about it after a couple months. It seems like new fears out of the blue are common at that age.
 
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