14 answers

5 Year Old Obsessed with Fire

One of my 5 year olds is obsessed with the house catching on fire. We have not ever had a fire or know anyone to have had one, but she is petrified of this. It is to the point that she panics even if I light a candle. Is ther anyone out there with the same problem and how did your child overcome this?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Practice an emergency plan for the family. That way she knows exactly what to do if it were to ever happen. It may help with her anxiety.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Hi A.,
I've never had my daughter mention this to me...however, she does talk about tornado's and storms and I think that is because she has to practice being safe at her preschool incase something would ever happen. I do know they also practice fire drills there using an alarm that she was really afraid of.
Does your daughter go to a school where they practice a fire drill using a loud alarm? Does she go to school with someone that has had or knows someone that had a house fire?
Maybe you could try taking her to the fire station for a visit. Maybe call them or stop in and talk with them before hand about her feelings and what her fears are. Maybe, they can show her that if something does ever happen, they will come to help.
Also, have you tried doing an escape route with her?
Maybe, if you practice this over and over for a while she won't be so worried if something would happen.
If you have a two story house be sure to get a ladder that you can use to escape out the window if needed.
We have one and I keep it behind our door in the master bedroom so if something ever happens, I can grab it and go get both kids out safely.
I hope some of this helps!
I will pray for your daughter and her fears!
T.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter, age 7 is also very afraid of fire. It used to be that I would turn on the gas stove & she would cry. She was also very frightened of the fire alarm. We have worked through some of her fears be reassuring her that she is safe. Little by little she gets better. From my experience it takes time & constant reassurane. I also would never light a candle or the stove without telling her. It is better she is prepared for what you are going to do and know that it is a "safe" form of fire. I hope that helps- good luck@

1 mom found this helpful

I was a firefighter/emt and took a positon doing Public Education. My first advice is to discuss your daughters fears and see if you can pinpoint when and where they began. Then consider contacting your local fire dept and talk with their educator. See how they feel you should proceed. Past experiance with this issue, has shown me that we NEVER force a child into a situation he or she is uncomfortable with. Also there are some great fire safety books that I use one of which is called No Dragons for Tea, or Dinofours fire drill.
Both are great childrens books with Good Messages. Be careful about other books some that appear good have mixed messages you don't want your daughter to have. Also you can go to the National Fire Administration Web site and there is a Kids section there. NFPA also has a Sparkey section. These may help you talk to your child. Most of all let her know that Fire fighters are there to help her and that she should NEVER HIDE. If you need a listing of Public educators in the area check out Indiana Safety Educators Website and there you will find a list of educators. Good Luck and God Bless.

1 mom found this helpful

Practice an emergency plan for the family. That way she knows exactly what to do if it were to ever happen. It may help with her anxiety.

1 mom found this helpful

I don't think this is uncommon. When I was a child, I was terrified to go to bed upstairs without my parents up there with me because I feared there would be a fire and I wouldn't hear them yelling "Fire". I would sleep on the couch until my parents went to bed. One night, my fears came true. Mom was making candy for Easter and I was sleeping on the couch. Our house caught on fire and our smoke detectors didn't work. Even being on the couch, I didn't hear them yelling. I just remember my sister wrapping a blanket around me and shoving me out the front door. I was 8 when this happened. I'm not sure anything can reassure a kid when they're that young and have fears like that. Might just be something she needs to grow out of. Just don't be harsh with her and try to understand her fears.

My daughter did the same thing. We showed her that the smoke alarms work and how they work. We made a plan in case of fire and discussed what things were dangerous and showed her the safety features of our house. She is still fearful, but it is at a level that is tolerable now. Knowledge is power, especially for children and their fears.

Dear A.,

You might try giving her her own smoke personal detector to carry around and keep by her bed. Might help reassure her if it doesn't go off.

God Bless,

S.

My daughter now 9 1/2 is obsessed with floods and has been since she was very young, much the same as you are describing with the fire situation. We have tried everything...books, safety lessons, cognitave therapy to no avail. We just reasure her frequently and hope she will outgrow it.

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