Once I Was Very Very Scared
A little squirrel announces that he was once very, very scared and finds out that he is not alone. Lots of little animals went through scary experiences, but they react in different ways. Turtle hides and gets a tummy ache, monkey clings, dog barks, and elephant doesn’t like to talk about it. They need help, and they get help from grown-ups who help them feel safe and learn ways to cope with difficult feelings.
This story was written to help children and grown-ups (parents, teachers, and other important adults) understand how stress can affect children and ways to help them.
Squirrel would love to hear what you think. Please share your feedback. Also, if you are willing, a great way to support us and our book is to add a review on Amazon. Thank you.
To Obtain the Book
Downloading this PDF or linking to it from another page means that you understand and agree to follow the use guidelines. Please read the copyright page to understand how you may use this story and PDF.
Other Language Versions
- Spanish (Español): Una Vez Tuve Mucho Mucho Miedo
- Arabic عربى) : ذات مرّة كنت خائفا جدّا جدّا)
- Turkish (Türk): Bir Keresinde Çok Çok Korkmuştum
Using the Book in Trainings or Linking to the Book on Other Websites
Using the PDF in a training
Please ensure that the full PDF is not included in the materials. People are welcome to obtain the PDF, but we are tracking downloads, and they should obtain the PDF from this website. Please include one of the images below in either a slide or handout as part of your training materials. Click on an image to obtain the downloadable version. Thank you!
Linking to the PDF from another website
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Praise for Once I Was Very Very Scared
"This wonderful book is unique in its sensitive portrayal of how we respond to fear and how supportive relationships can help. Children of all ages will relate to the beautiful words and expressive pictures. The compelling story offers children and the adults that care for them the perfect medium to explore the universal feeling of being afraid and the gift of creating safety together."
Alicia F. Lieberman, Ph.D.
Irving B. Harris Endowed Chair of Infant Mental Health, Professor, UCSF Department of Psychiatry
Author: Emotional Life of the Toddler, Don't Hit My Mommy, Psychotherapy with Infants and Young Children
"This beautifully illustrated book will undoubtedly help children to find the presence of mind necessary to put their feelings into language, and to help them by-pass the universal experience of hurt kids: to blame themselves and to carry the scars inside. A wonderful tool to help hurt kids heal!"
Bessel van der Kolk, MD
Medical Director Trauma Center at JRI, Professor of Psychiatry, Boston University School of Medicine
New York Time Best Seller: The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
We appreciate hearing from you. We love knowing whether our stories were helpful, ways they may have helped you, and how we might improve them. You can let us know what you thought in a couple different ways.
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We plan to continue to develop materials connected to this book including free parent guides and free measures for assessing: 1) exposure to stressful and traumatic events; 2) symptoms; 3) positive coping skills. If you would like to receive updates, you can do so in a few ways.
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3. Check our web page periodically and see what we've developed.