Kiera Harrison ∙ 32 weeks ago
Fear and anxiety in childhood
Posted on August 30, 2012 by raihan 0
From the early age all children are more or less trouble by fear, and some are so afraid that their freedom of action is seriously impaired. Adults too are usually afraid, many of them combat with unresolved problems that are established directly or indirectly in their childhood fears. Fears exists so generally in contemporary life that the present time has been called the “age of anxiety”. Thais probably does not mean that the present age is more fear ridden than earlier periods in history but that people recognize the inroads of fear more clearly and acknowledge them more openly than they did in the past. In earlier generations one make of a hero was that he was without fear. Now it is recognized that such a hero probably never existed. No one who is alert to currents in his own life and to circumstances in the world in which he lives can be wholly without fear. Some people are afraid to admit to others that they are scared, and there are some who are unwilling to grant to themselves more humbly and who face reality with more courage do not feel it necessary to play false in this regard. They accept the fact that fear has had, and still has, an important place in their lives.
Early signs of fear
During infancy, a child’s fears arise mainly in response to happenings in his immediate environment. As he grows older, the range of his fears grows wider. As he acquires the ability to dwell upon his past and to anticipate his future, a large number of his fears pertain to distant dangers, foreboding as to what the future may bring, and apprehensions concerning his own impulses and what he has done or might do.
There have been various theories as to what are original or unlearned fear stimuli. In an earlier day, there were theories to the effect that we are endowed with many instinctive fears, such as fear of animals, of the occult, of death, of large bodies of water, and so forth. Later a theory was advanced that there are only two original, “natural” fear stimuli, namely, loud noises and sudden displacement or less or support, but this account was as inadequate as it was simple. The circumstances that may give rise to so-called “unlearned” fears in the infant include not simply noises and less of support, but any intense, sudden, unexpected or novel stimulus or any condition which demands some kind of adaptation for which the organism is unprepared.
Moreover, the fear stimulus cannot be described as consisting as consisting simply of an isolated external stimulus like a noise, for example. Depending upon the condition of the organism of the time-weather, for example it is in a state of tension or relaxation-a certain noise may produce fear at one time but not at another. In like manner, a happening may produce fear one child and not in another. It is necessary to take a account not only the condition of the individual who is responding but also the setting of the external stimulus. A noise and a sudden movement, each of which alone elicits no response, may, in condition, produce fright; again a jolt may arouse fear who a child is with an unfamiliar person but not when a familiar person is near.