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Shyness

From 2 to 3 years

Shyness

Children can become shy with strangers or with people they do not see very often. They don’t want to talk to people they don’t know.

This change occurs because they don’t recognize strangers and they don’t yet know who they can trust.

Older children sometimes refuse to be held by their grand-parents or to hug other members of the family.  They choose the persons who can get close to them.

 

Learning

It is very important to respect children’s wish not to be touched.  They need to know they have the right to be master of their body.

 

Do this   Instead of doing this
Tell him you are very close to him. Hold his hand, take him in your arms, and put your hand on his shoulder. Tell him he is shy.
Prepare him to experience new situations.
Tell him where you are going, who will be there and what will happen.
Ask him why he is shy.
Explain who the "strangers" are before he meets them. Make remarks, force him to be sociable and be impatient with him.
Deflect the attention given to your child in order to give him time to adapt to a new situation. Force him to speak in the presence of persons that he does not know.
Give him time to become self-confident.
The more you force a child to talk and to be sociable when he is with people he does not really know, the more he becomes anxious and lacks self-confidence.
Force him to hug or kiss someone.

Protecting