It is of course possible to make this list a bit longer, if you know what we mean. First of all it should be specified that fear is a part of a normal development and helps a person to keep calm in front of dangers. Fear, from infancy to adulthood, is a frequently experienced situation so much that researchers proved that 90% of children during a period or another of their development had feared something. That’s why it’s not judicious to wait for kids to be absolutely or unconditionally fearless. Phobias: First of all it’s essential for us to separate fear and phobias. In order to call a fear a phobia, it should suit the following criteria:
- The kid’s fear is exaggerated or excessively high in regards to the situation he faced, for example because he fell once from a swing in a park he isn’t able to ride a swing anymore.
- The fact the kid can’t be convinced by logical explanations.
- The kid’s involuntary excessive fear or worrying.
- The deliberate avoidance of the feared situation. Phobias aren’t either specific to an age or continue in the long term. In some phobias, the causing event can be identified but in some several other cases it is impossible to do so.
Fears: Some fears are regarded as normal at specific ages. For instance, the fear of noise and of the loss of physical support is quite natural during infancy. The fear of strangers observed from the age of eight month to 1-1.5 year old is also accepted as normal. The commonly fear developed at age 5 of several imaginative structures such as witches and monsters is also a predictable situation. Here the thing we should pay attention to is the fact that some fears can appear at specific ages and should disappear after a certain period of time.
For example, if a kid aged 6 is still fearing of strangers this is a situation which needs attention. How are reactions to fear developed? One of the most important reasons of the binding or linkage of a baby to its mother is the capacity of the mother to decrease the baby’s fears. During infancy and the early childhood the reaction a kid has in front of a new situation is really influenced not to say determined by the mother’s own reaction. A kid for example, analyses the expression on his mother’s face when he is learning to ride a bicycle for first time. If the mother support her kid and allows him to gradually become self-confident and independent, that kid will think about riding bicycles as an interesting activity and focus all his mind to that activity.
On the contrary, the mother or the person taking care of that kid, during the period the kid is trying to learn, watches him with an anxious expression and continuously warns him of possible dangers, the kid instead of focusing on that activity as he should, he will just pay attention to the person who is more important than his own life and the anxiety related to that situation will increase with time. This will lead to the avoidance of the situation and the will of never again trying to learn it. We call this hesitative behaviour “a fear”.
As it appeared Fear is a behaviour of avoidance it has been identified also as a conditioning. We said before that being afraid of noises/loud voices is a normal thing during infancy. Let’s just suppose that in that period, there’s outside a great noise while a baby is having a bath. This can provoke a phobia of water or bath in that child. Worries are alongside with the avoidance and the conditioning another factor causing fears. Worries or concerns leading to fear are mostly observed when in the dark and been alone when falling asleep.
A kid begins to be aware of the social rules at almost three years old and above with his father and mother’s interventions. From that moment on he’s not anymore free to do everything he wants. As a result, the kid starts being angry with both his father and his mother who put him in that problematic situation, but he doesn’t want to express that feeling.
Besides he feel guilty because of that feeling of his. In order to get rid of that situation which is making him feel uncomfortable, he expresses his guilt and fear to the several scary pictures he previously found and that are representing his mother and father or in general the people representing society and rules.
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