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Lions and Tigers and Unicorns(?) and Other Childhood Fears

Cheri headshot

Image of a sign of a unicorn silhouette encircled with a red bar crossing it out to represent "no"Children are known for being afraid of all manner of things, from the dark to monsters under the bed to the flying monkeys from The Wizard of Oz (a very reasonable fear!). For my two-year-old son, however, it’s unicorns. Terrifying, I know.

How did this fear come to be? Apparently, from a scene in a Disney Junior’s Little Einsteins episode entitled The Song of the Unicorn, where a unicorn from a medieval tapestry comes to life. We love Little Einsteins, but for weeks, the poor baby couldn’t go to sleep in his room by himself because there was a unicorn there. To make sure he was being clear (he’s often frustrated with our lack of comprehension), he would put his pudgy forefingers together in a cone shape over his head to make the point and forcefully say “UNICORN!” (You have to picture a 2-year-old doing this to appreciate how adorable this was to see). Now, many weeks later, the sightings continue though less frequently. Last night, as I unbuckled him from the van, he pointed at the house saying “unicorn” in a sort of far-off voice. You’re starting to freak me out, kid! Except that a unicorn, the most innocuous of all imaginary animals, isn’t my fear (oh, yeah, and they don’t exist).

If you find yourself in need of some books to help with your child’s fears, there’s plenty to choose from in the MCLINC catalog. Simply search for “Fear in children” as a SUBJECT and you’ll find books on helping your child manage his/her fears, from monsters to trying new things to doctor visits. Surprisingly, though, no unicorns.