My Child is Afraid of Spirits, What Can I Do?

If your child is afraid of Spirits - there are things you can do to help. Learn more at

By Sarah Petruno, Shamana

Months before my daughter was born, I knew that she would be able to see, hear, and communicate with Spirit.

In fact, this knowledge was one of the many reasons that propelled my sister, Amanda, along the path to accepting her gifts of mediumship. She knew that her niece would have the same gifts and that if she herself took the jump into acceptance, that she would be able to help her neice.

So, it was no surprise that when my daughter was 2 months old, that we started noticing her pausing and focusing on areas in the house where no one was physically present.

At first, they were Guides, Guardians, and Deceased Loved Ones.

She started making faces, saying her own name in an Eastern European accent (our ancestral heritage), and adopting the characteristic behaviors of loved ones that died long before she was born.

It was all fun and games for a while, and if we weren't paying attention we’d often know a Loved One was present because she called out to them and offered them her snacks.

Once she reached the age of 2 years old, she began waking up several times in the middle of the night crying. Awoken by Spirits, that we often did not know. Light and Dark, Guides and not Guides, Loved Ones and complete strangers.

When out of the house, she would at times cower in fear and hide her face.

When she’d trying to sleep, we noticed her turning her face and staring in complete distraction.

As a parent, it’s no longer fun and games when

A.) You just want some sleep

B.) You just want your child to sleep

C.) You don’t want your child to be afraid

D.) You would prefer Spirits to leave them alone

Almost all, if not all, children can see, hear, and communicate with Spirit.

This is because we’re all born into this life as a Spirit first, into a physical body. And when you’re not so far removed from pure-Spiritdom, your spiritual senses are still very much intact.

Which means, that as a child, you can still see, hear, and feel those in Spirit, because not too long ago, you were just a Spirit too, without a physical body.

It isn’t until we get older, that we tend to be culturally and socially conditioned out of believing, using, and trusting our spiritual senses and abilities. This happens slowly, through phrases like,

“Oh, your friend is imaginary/pretend, he isn’t real.”

“What man? I don’t see a man, honey, he’s not there, go back to sleep.”

“Stop making things up, that’s not true.”

You get the picture.

If your child is afraid of Spirits - there are things you can do to help. Learn more at

But back to the problem - if your child is waking up with nightmares, seeing Spirit, and is scared, what you can do, as a parent, to help them?

As much as I’d love to say that all it takes is a house cleansing with sage, and everything will be fine and the Spirits will leave, it’s not that easy.

It has to do with setting boundaries - not you, your child.

Imagine that your child goes to school, and he comes home telling you that he’s being picked on at school and other kids are bothering him. You may contact the teacher, the person supervising your child, but you would definitely also begin to explain to your child the need for standing up for themselves and setting boundaries with other kids.

Even if you were there as a parent, in the moment of bothering or unfairness, you could step in, sure, but at some point - your child will need to learn how to say, “Hey, I was playing with that and not done with it, don’t take it, leave me alone.”

That’s a boundary in the physical world.

The same types of boundaries need to be set in the Spiritual world.

Let’s say for example, you went over to that other child and you told them to stop treating your child poorly, they may agree - but behind your back, when you aren’t there, they can technically do anything they want until your child puts their foot down and stops it.

The thing is, your child is their own being. Physical, Spiritual, and Energetic.

They have their own path and their own journey, they are connected to Spirits that we aren’t and they have their own Guides and Angels. They have an existence that includes you and is also separate from you.

They have a whole realm of kids of the playground that we’ll never know - and they have to learn how to stand up for themselves out there on their own terms.

What I mean by this, is that if you want Spirits to leave your child alone, you have to teach them how to set their own boundaries to make that happen.

You have to teach them that they have the power to tell the Spirits to leave and to stop it.

If your child is afraid of Spirits - there are things you can do to help. Learn more at

For our daughter, a toddler, we’ve started by  explaining to her that she can tell them to “get out,” just like she tells our dogs to get out of her room when they bother her. It helps if you too, have started to explore your own intuitive abilities and can sense and detect the presence of Spirit, but this is not necessary. If you notice your child staring at an empty space, trust that it isn’t empty and act!

In our house, we have started asking if a Spirit was bothering her. And if she’s said yes, we tell her that if she wants them to stop, she can tell them to leave and get out. Even as intuitives ourselves, we can't always see the things she sees - in part because she has to learn to deal with it on her own without our interference. 

And not long after we started this practice, as I laid her down for a nap - it happened. She saw a Spirit in her room and froze. I walked her through the process, asked her if they were bothering her, and then told her she could tell them to get out, and she did! At even two years old, she repeated, “get out,” several times, and they did.

Now, she has started doing it without me prompting her. On more than one occasion, she's walked into her room and told Spirits emphatically to "GET OUT." 

How you do this, and the degree to which boundaries can be set, of course, depends on the developmental readiness of the child and your own parenting style. At this point, you can’t exactly sit down with a two-year-old and have them make a list of when it is and is not acceptable for a Spirit to visit them, but you could do that with a 4-year-old. You could also teach them a song to keep the bad Spirits away.

With an older child, you have the ability to work with them to set firmer boundaries for themselves. If they don’t want Spirits in their bedroom or in their dreams at night, they can tell them so - ahead of time. And when they wake up at night, they can tell them to leave then too.

As parents, our jobs are to mold our children into strong, independent, and confident beings, to the best of our ability. This includes all things physical world, but it extends to the spiritual world as well.

Your child has the ability to stand up for themselves in the spiritual world, and you have the ability to show them how.

Need more tips on how to help your psychic child? Start here


LAST UPDATED: January 29, 2015

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