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15 Jan 2013

2 year old sees things
My two year old niece seems to be afraid of her own home, especially her bedroom. When she visits she tells me she does not want to go home and she says she is scared. None of us have given her any reason to think of horrible monsters nor have we told her anything that would scare her.

We do not ask her about this in case she wants attention from it. She is petrified if you open her cupboard door. She tells you to not go in there.

What could be causing this? I have not seen ghosts but could there be a spirit living there?
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Lets here from other, experienced moms, here. Its really common around this age and older, for children to develop fears of the dark and of going to sleep alone, often expressing fears of monsters or bad people who might harm them. When you describe her as frightened that you open a particular cupboard door, and warns you, fits perfectly with this. Fortunately this is within the normal range of chioldren's behaviour, and there isn't the faintest chance that there are ghosts or spirits involved.
This is often a passing phase, and it can help to use loads of confident re-assurance, a night-light ( a dim light in her room that doesn't produce scary shadows and shows there's nothing nasty lurking there ; maybe in the daylight show that there's nothing in the cupboard, and discuss with her if she'd feel safer if it were left open so nothing could hide there, or if it was locked so nothing could get in or out.
A quick fix can be to allow her to sleep, if possible in her own bed, in her parents room for a few days - the problem then can become persuading her to return to her own room !
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