My 21/2 year old is very scared of strangers, new situations and noises. I am planning to enroll him in day care in September and is very concerned about his behavior, he is currently having a hard time with seperation from myself and my wife and would scream and run upon seeing new faces and when he hears noise.
I suspect strongly that you are dealing with separation anxiety. Whether this is severe enough to be a separation anxiety "disorder" or not, only time will tell. In the meantime, educate yourself on this issue. I might suggest you google the phrase "separation anxiety in toddlers" or "anxiety behaviors in children" or "separation anxiety disorder in young children" or similar words/phrases to learn more about this issue.
The best thing to do at this point is to socialize, socialize and socialize. Your son is afraid of people (actually a very common fear) and so you need to desensitize him by exposing him again, again and again to social situations. Visit McDonald's or the mall or grocery store. Take him for walks in the park or your neighbourhood. Go with him to the library for reading time, attend your local church, visit friends and relatives, play in the park, go to the beach (anywhere and often where there are people). Let me warn you - your child may take a lot of time before he is comfortable with people (and I'm talking years not weeks or even months). If your son is as "scared of strangers, new situations and noises" as you stated, then I wonder if day care is a wise decision in September. Perhaps play dates in the comfort of his home might be a better idea along with over-socialization. Good luck - dealing with anxiety is not easy but it is an issue that can be rectified (over time). I wish you the best ....
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