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  • 5-year old scared of handicapped people

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    Old 11-18-2005, 08:24 PM   #1
    danimal15
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    5-year old scared of handicapped people

    Our 5 1/2-year old boy is scared of - and obsessed with - handicapped people. Even seeing someone in a wheelchair makes him want to cross the street. We saw a man with what must have been cerebral palsy on the train a few weeks ago, and now he's nervous we'll see the same man if we take the train again. There was a severely physically-disabled boy in a music class I once took him to, and my son spent the entire class staring at the wall so he wouldn't have to look at the child.

    He worries all the time that one of these people will follow us home and hide in his room, and he's scared to go to bed at night. Sometimes he has nightmares about this. He also seems scared of old people -women in particular. He saw an older lady on our street today while he was waiting for the school bus and told us later that she was staring at him.

    Are these normal 5-year old fears, or something more serious, like a phobia? My wife and I are considering getting him some counseling, but perhaps we're over-reacting. This has been going on for months, by the way. He's otherwise a bright, happy little boy who charms adults everywhere and enjoys kindergarten (where, by the way, disabled children are sometimes present in his classroom).

    Thanks.

     
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    Old 11-18-2005, 11:01 PM   #2
    LilEeyore
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    Re: 5-year old scared of handicapped people

    i have a severely handicapped sister, so my kids are used to stuff like that... but one thing, it's very very natural for kids to stare and want to look and know what's wrong b/c those people are "different".... and most of those people (that i've known and met) understand that, and don't mind that part.....
    I wish i could help you on the other part.... do you think maybe he's perhaps scared that somehow he'll "get" what they have? WHen my kids ask "why is that person" like however.... i point out ways that they are different too... but living with a severely handicapped aunt it's different..... I wish i could help you out.. my only thought is maybe he's afraid of "catching" what they have? I hope it works out all well for you.

     
    Old 11-18-2005, 11:02 PM   #3
    LilEeyore
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    Re: 5-year old scared of handicapped people

    i have a severely handicapped sister, so my kids are used to stuff like that... but one thing, it's very very natural for kids to stare and want to look and know what's wrong b/c those people are "different".... and most of those people (that i've known and met) understand that, and don't mind that part.....
    I wish i could help you on the other part.... do you think maybe he's perhaps scared that somehow he'll "get" what they have? WHen my kids ask "why is that person" like however.... i point out ways that they are different too... but living with a severely handicapped aunt it's different..... I wish i could help you out.. my only thought is maybe he's afraid of "catching" what they have? I hope it works out all well for you.

     
    Old 11-20-2005, 07:03 AM   #4
    valleygurl
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    Re: 5-year old scared of handicapped people

    Hi There, I would suggest counseling for your child, as it is so very normal for children (and adults) to stare, ask questions, and be curious when they see a handicapped person, however the reaction you have described that your child has when seeing a disabled person seems to be a little extreme.

    As the other poster had said, maybe he is afraid that he may get "what they have". Counseling would help him to understand and to not be afraid.
    How does your child react to the handicapped children that are often in his class?

    I have a severely handicapped child so i know from family and friends who have small children that come into contact with my son will often have different reactions. Some children just ask questions, as others will be sure and stay a good distance away. lol But i have not seen any small children with a fear of my child as great as what your child is experiencing.

    So, yes, i would take him to a counselor to see what exactly his fear is (or phobia) and to help him to deal with it now rather than he have to be scared and to deal with those feeling for years.

    God bless your sweet child,
    Valley

     
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