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Teddy bears are comforting and soft, and most of us probably got at least one (or two or ten) when we were younger. Why do we like them so much, aside from their cuteness and soft natures? To some, teddy bears represent their youth and spending some time with one can bring back memories of the carefree times of childhood. Additionally, stroking a teddy bear’s fur is similar to petting a cat or a dog. The action causes relaxation and reduces stress. For some, having a teddy bear to be with and talk to can make them feel less alone, and teddy bears can serve as a constant source of affection and support.
The police have utilized the calming effects of bears by giving them to frightened and traumatized children for comfort. Police in our community do this, as do many across the country. Some communities organize annual drives to collect new bears for the police officers to give out. In Chandler AZ recently, a father-son realtor team, Keller Williams Realty East Valley, organized one such drive. Jeff, the son part of the team, was motivated to organize this event because of being the recipient of one such bear in his childhood, after a frightening experience involving becoming lost. He recalls that the bear helped him calm down and noted how important a bear must be to a child who had undergone a trauma far worse than his, such as witnessing a crime or losing their parents.
Such an occurrence happened in the wake of 9/11, when the State of Oklahoma brought together sixty thousand stuffed animals and sent them to New York, where they were distributed all throughout schools which were affected and to family relief organizations.
In average, everyday circumstances, too, teddy bears are vital to a child’s well being. Psychologists refer to them as “transitional objects” and serve to motivate a child’s self-awareness and compassion. Often times, children will care for their teddy bears and other stuffed toys as though they had all of the needs they themself possess. Through caring for their friends, they are essentially learning to take care of themselves and how to relate to others.
Teddy bears can also serve to relieve the stress of separation from parents by remaining a constant and providing companionship even as the parents distance themselves little by little in order to help their child develop. This is especially true when the parents are the ones to have given the bear to the child. Even if the parents do not choose to provide their child with one or more plush friends, it has been shown that children seek such out of their own volition.
If you feel like getting a new friend today for either yourself, for a family member, or friend, consider checking out our Teddy Bear collection on zazzle in our Wilderness_Store. If you are looking for something different than what we offer, contact us and we can customize any product just for you.
Join us next week for more of our blog posts and thank you for reading. Until then, enjoy your weekend.