TERRIFIED CHILD

Cathy - posted on 08/05/2011 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My child's friend goes to the same day care. When the male gardeners cut the grass or if there are loud noises, this child is petrified!!! He jumps in any adult's arms that is near him and holds on for dear life. What could possibly be the problem?



The boy is 3 years old.

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Tammy - posted on 08/05/2011

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My son was very afraid of loud noises especially early on in infancy and as a young toddler. Flushing toilets, people talking loudly to him (even if they were smiling), music playing in the car, etc, would cause him to cry as if he were either in danger or being tortured. He is now 4 1/2 and still occasionally gets stressed when there is a lot going on, but he has a bold and confident older sister that has taught him a lot about the joys of meeting new people at the playground, and engaging in classroom situations. She takes him by the hand and reassures him, and always brings him back to me if something has upset him. He sits in my lap for a while and and he tells me how he feels, then goes back to his play. I do push his comfort a little but I am a stay at home mom and can very slowly introduce him to things and stop when he seems too uncomfortable. For instance, a couple of years ago I started playing lullabies in the car very softly, and only one or two songs before turning it off. He still isn't a fan of listening to music in the car (although he loves music when he is home and he is purposefully listening to it), but I occasionally turn on children's or classical music because my daughter loves it, and my son doesn't yell at me to turn it off unless he's really tired. Oftentimes he even enjoys it, and I catch him dancing to the music at restaurants on a regular basis these days. I think facing fears is important for anyone, and I encourage both of my children to do things out of their comfort zones so they can gain confidence. "You can do it!" My mother was extremely cautious with me and treated me with such delicacy that I think it instilled fear in me and nurtured a sense of anxiety that I still deal with. If you "don't" face things that are uncomfortable, you start to feel that you "can't". I think there is a difference between what I am talking about with my son where I carefully encourage him and stop when he is more than mildly uncomfortable/annoyed, and what you are describing as "terrified" and feeling obviously insecure. I sounds like he is being pushed too far. My son for instance has a strong sense of belonging in our family and always feels very secure knowing I am not far away. I think the whole formula would change with a frightened child in daycare. Some kids just need their mommies more than others. I'm not sure how helpful this is since I don't know how much time this child's mother has to heighten his sense of security while encouraging confidence, but this is how I have worked through it with my son FWIW.

Bobbi - posted on 08/05/2011

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Ask if the parent/guardian has had the boy tested for sensory issues or autism. My child is mildly autistic and some noises he just cannot tolerate. He gets scared and wants to be hugged sometimes and other times he will cover his ears and rock.

Ashley - posted on 08/05/2011

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Try introducing loud noises alittle everyday with something he loves. Ie. Blending a smoothies for him or helping mow the lawn with a bubble lawn mower

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Cathy - posted on 08/05/2011

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Thank you; autism was my first thought, but I didn't want to introduce that until I had confirmation from someone else. I will suggest to the parent to have him checked. Another parent's take was that he had been abused which I cannot attest to. Thank you so much.

[deleted account]

Um, not use to loud noises? Associates loud noises with something scary?just doesn't like noises? I hated the vacuum. Until I was 12. :) when my daughter got tubes she would cover her ears when the ice crushed was going and we had to turn the tv and radios down. It was like she was hearing everything for the first time.

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