• It’s 3am, I’m sound asleep, dreaming peacefully. Until cold, scared little hands shake me awake. “Mommy, I had a bad dream….” If your house doesn’t sing the Bad Dream Blues consider yourself lucky. Really, you should go to Vegas and try that luck. Fear of the dark, monsters in the closet, and scary dreams. Nighttime fears are terrible. Ladybug has managed to work all of these into her nighttime routine. She is suddenly afraid of the dark, is afraid to close her eyes because she dreams of monsters, and she is absolutely certain that something sinister lives inside of her closet. So how do you help your child cope? Do you give her some monster spray? Do you give her a nightlight and a flash light? Do you let her crawl into your bed until she feels safe? Personally, that last one won’t happen here. But I know many parents who swear by that technique.

    In our house, we have chosen to forgo the Monster Spray.

    This is what has worked for us so far. Lady bug picked out her very own nightlight from the store. She chose which outlet to plug it into, basing this decision on how much light each spot gave her. She also has a handheld flash light just in case. When we put her to bed we turn out the lights and sit on her bed and explain everything that she sees. What shadows are, and what causes them. We identify all the sounds we hear. In our house, we have chosen to forgo the Monster Spray. Big Daddy and I found it to be contradictory for us to assure Ladybug that monsters did not exist but then give her a spray to get rid of them. Whatever you choose, be consistent. Never belittle your child’s fears, and let them know you empathize with them.