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This isn't normal. Has anyone else's kid been this way?

Posted by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:32 PM
  • 38 Replies

My son is 4 year old. He just turned 4 in October. For the past year clipping his nails has been more than a chore, it's been a battle. I have not been able to clip his toe nails in close to 3 months. He freaks out, to the point that when we lived in our apartment I had a neighbor call security because they thought I was beating him. He had a splinter in his foot a couple months ago and I couldn't take it out, nor could I take out the one in his hand on Monday. We have to wait until he is asleep and do it then. We did get his splinters out by waiting until he was asleep and up until a few months ago we could get his nails clipped when he was asleep. 

I will give him a bath and everything is great. Then I grab the nail clippers and all hell breaks loose. He screams, cries and fights me about it. He will start shaking so bad that I worry he is having a seizure or something (no he doesn't have a seizure disorder and has never had a seizure) so I stop. It's a serious phobia. He knows it won't hurt, he even says that he knows it won't hurt he just is so scared that he won't let us do it. We were waiting until he was asleep and then going in to do it but that's not working anymore. He will wake up screaming and crying. He doesn't remember it in the morning, though. I am at my wits end. I don't know how to handle this anymore. 

My son is a great kid, completely normal. In fact this is the only thing I think he has ever been afraid of. He is a little dare devil. He will fall and hurt himself and he just laughs it off. When he was 2 years old he jumped down a slide and sprained his ankle. He never complained about it, just said it hurt and couldn't walk on it. I don't understand this fear of getting his nails clipped. He isn't afraid of getting his hair cut. Does anyone else have a child with a phobia of getting their nails clipped? We have an appointment with a new pedi next week about this but I was wondering if this has happened with anyone else. I'm sorry my post is all over the place, I'm just frustrated about all this. 

by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:32 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Leslie120
by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:36 PM
Yes!!! Not to the point of your sons, but my 5 year old daughter has always been scared of getting her nails clipped. I bribe her by telling her we can paint them afterwards and that usually works now but there were many times I would have to hold her down and speed clip. Sorry, I know not much help but your not alone.
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spreadmywings
by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:44 PM
Maybe try a nail file instead? Sallys and probably Walmart have fun patterned files.
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redneckmama2
by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:53 PM
1 mom liked this
Quoting spreadmywings:

Maybe try a nail file instead? Sallys and probably Walmart have fun patterned files.



I was gonna suggest the nail file as well... it takes a little longer but if it saves you the battle than it may just be worth it. When mine were younger and didnt like having their nails done i would hide the clippers in my hand until they sat down and just let them think i was just looking to see how clean their nails were and then when they looked away i would start clipping and they would be fine... but they were like 18 months old when i would do this so it probably wont work for your 4 year old. good luck mama
morrigan914
by Silver Member on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:54 PM
I would just cut them in his sleep.

morrigan914
by Silver Member on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:57 PM
Or try what I did when my daughter didn't want to do something cuz it 'hurt' we would sing a some (for some reason we choose frosty the snow man) and she would close her eyes and I wouldn't tell her when I did it. Worked really well.

mom2acutiepie
by Gold Member on Dec. 3, 2011 at 8:58 PM


Quoting redneckmama2:

Quoting spreadmywings:

Maybe try a nail file instead? Sallys and probably Walmart have fun patterned files.



I was gonna suggest the nail file as well... it takes a little longer but if it saves you the battle than it may just be worth it. When mine were younger and didnt like having their nails done i would hide the clippers in my hand until they sat down and just let them think i was just looking to see how clean their nails were and then when they looked away i would start clipping and they would be fine... but they were like 18 months old when i would do this so it probably wont work for your 4 year old. good luck mama

Thanks for the suggestion ladies. I guess I didn't mention in the OP that I did try the nail file. Didn't work, he still freaked out. I have tried letting him do it himself even and that didn't work. 

mom2acutiepie
by Gold Member on Dec. 3, 2011 at 9:01 PM

It's not really working anymore. He is waking up screaming and we have to hold him down while he fights. I have neighbors and can't have that happening that late at night (I need DH to help me hold him down, DH doesn't get home until midnight). Although he doesn't remember it in the morning, I'm sure my neighbors don't want to hear that when they are trying to sleep. 

Quoting morrigan914:

I would just cut them in his sleep.


EB07
by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 9:03 PM

My daughter was very similar when she was little. I never found a solution really. I gave up trying around 4-5 years old unless one toe or finger was real bad. She was an avid nail biter by then, though, so nothing needed clipping too often. She still bites them now, at 11. I even catch her biting her toenails.... yuck!!! LOL

 I would try filing, like some others suggested. Good luck!!!

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silverdawn99
by Jamie on Dec. 3, 2011 at 9:06 PM

LOL my two oldest were the same way... they would scream bloody murder but i held on tight and did the deed anyways

masastan
by on Dec. 3, 2011 at 9:07 PM

I would start looking into getting him some help with this phobia. Good luck!

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