Tuesday, April 17, 2012


About 10 minutes after putting Trent down for bed last night, he started bawling and trying to get out of his room. (Remember when I admitted to being a terrible mother who locks her son in his room?  Yup, still do.)  Brent and I were talking in the dining room, so I hopped up and went into his room.  I scooped him up out of his tent (yes, he's been sleeping in a tent the last few weeks) and started to rock him.  He told me he was scared because it was dark in his room.  

Back story...I decided when Trent was a few months old to quit using a night light in his room because I didn't want him to develop a fear of the dark or need that light to help him sleep.  Yet it didn't work.  A few months ago he started asking for us to leave his door open so he could have light from the hall.  We thought he was stalling or just wanting his door open so he could get out of bed, but it turned into crying fits at night.  Brent made a great point that a night light isn't really a great idea for our son, as we fully believe he would take it out of the wall and try to put something else in the plugs.  One night at Target, we found a mini-lantern that runs on batteries.  Genius!  Trent has been sleeping with his lantern on for probably 2 months now with almost no tears at bedtime (he is still a toddler).  The batteries have been wearing out a little recently, and I guess tonight it was just too dark in his room.  So we replaced the batteries and he was happy to get back in his tent to go to sleep.

It makes me curious what causes this fear.  What does a 2 1/2 year old have to be afraid of?  Why do kids develop a fear of the dark?  As a mother, I hate that he is afraid of anything and want to make sure he feels safe all the time (which is completely unrealistic I know).  So, for now, a $3 lantern from Target is doing the trick...but I hate thinking about what his next fear will be.  Somehow I doubt we'll find another solution at Target for $3.


Unknown said...

I have thought about the same thing and recently! wish i had an answer

Karen M. Peterson said...

I remember when I was little, the reason I was scared of the dark is that my eyes adjusted just enough that I could see shapes, but then my mind would fill those shapes in with scary images. Creepy faces and such. It stopped when I had at least a little bit of light.

KristenW said...

Awww.. just like his Auntie. I like the hallway light on at your house, too! Poor boo.

STACEY said...

Allena, I have wondered about that same thing. What do our children have to be afraid of? Although, I read the comments above & Karen does have a good point.