Band Aids Make Everything Better

As a toddler, my son wouldn’t have anything to do with band aids, even if he was seriously, outrageously bleeding. He would freak out if we dared to apply a one to his poor, damaged skin.

Now, he’s kind of obsessed with band aids. At least once a day I find him in the bathroom bandaging some imaginary wound: tiny hangnails, minuscule scrapes, the smallest bumps and bruises.

What I’ve discovered is “owies” are one of my child’s greatest fears, and that the pain and terror an owie inflicts is diminished the very instant a band aid is applied. He frequently reports on the injuries other kids encounter at school. He verifies that a head bonk or a banged knee is a minor incident by uttering the phrase, “It’s ok, I don’t need a band aid.”

When he is in the bandaging mood, I try to bite my lip and indulge him—he’s just 5, after all—but sometimes I do attempt to persuade him against covering the most inoffensive of wounds. When I’m a really annoyed grown-up I threaten to stop buying them. He usually just looks at me unconcerned and continues what he’s doing. After all, the band aid is more empathetic than I am to the alleged owie. Sigh. I must remember that this is a phase.

And possibly one that is almost over… or not. Yesterday morning my husband pointed out a small scrape on my son’s elbow that had gone sans bandage. A tiny scab was already formed and any pain had gone unnoticed by my little guy. He examined it carefully but didn’t take any action, which was surprising. Don’t think for a second he forgot about it, though. Driving home from a playdate last night, he very seriously broached the subject of getting a band aid for, what else?, the owie on his elbow.

Is your little one obsessed with band aids? Or does he want nothing to do with them?