A CHILD KEEPING A PARENT SAFE
Don’t abuse, don’t feel you have to be perfect. In line with yesterday’s parenting posts about how to deal with contradictory advice–remember how strong children are. Watch this video.
One reason children as young as this can stay so calm is that they don’t yet have a good hold on reality. The fact that her father might die is on par with her worrying about what to wear. She also has absolute faith that 911 will arrive on time, help her father and he will be okay. This is is wishful thinking or as the great student of how children think Jean Piaget would say pre-operational thought and what I and others call magical thinking. When we adults deny reality, it is for the same purpose, to comfort us and help us feel in control. Useful.
Also useful was the fact that her parents had obviously taught her how to call 911, to trust 911 and to speak on the phone.
Do remember, however, as Thomas Phelon notes, “Children are not little adults.” This same girl may have night terrors that can’t be explained away. Then the parents have to buy into her magical thinking and ask “What do you need to keep the monsters away?”