Desperately Seeking… Bear Bear

Posted on 29th June 2010 in birthday/ Colchester Zoo/ Keel Toys/ KidAround Magazine/ son

When my youngest was 6 months old we went for one of our regular walks round Colchester Zoo and out through the gift shop. My slightly older son had a habit at the time of collecting plastic animals – we had zillions of them – but youngest son had never really shown much interest.

On this day however, youngest son reached out and plucked a bear off the shelves.

From that day onwards, he and ‘Bear Bear’ were inseparable. Youngest son turns 9 in a couple of weeks and even now Bear Bear goes to bed with him every night.

When Bear Bear needed washing I went back to the Zoo and bought a second bear (Spare Bear) and for a while I got away with swopping the bears.

One weekend when my ex husband and his then girlfriend had the boys, they returned them home without Bear Bear. Youngest son was devastated. Ex husband claimed he was ‘lost in town’ and they had been back to every shop but the bear was no where to be seen.

The next morning I started phoning shops. I rang and continued ringing until I found a shop who said ‘yes, we had a bear left here yesterday’. And so I picked up the bear.

As time has gone on and other toys and computer games have competed for attention, it would seem that Spare Bear has been well and truly lost.

We do still have Bear Bear, but, youngest son has a few abandonment issues and he gets quite sad about the lost bear. He sometimes is tearful at bedtime because ‘he thinks Bear Bear is sad about missing his family’, it is quite heartbreaking.

I have appealed in the newspaper, via KidAround magazine, on a ‘toys reunited website’ and I’ve rung Keel Toys and I’ve been back to the Zoo. It would seem there are no more Bear Bears to be found! After the appeal in KidAround a very lovely lady did contact me and say she had a Bear Bear – I went straight round and it turned out to be a mini-Bear Bear. Youngest son was delighted but he was still sad that we hadn’t found ‘Bear Bears family’.

So this is a last ditch appeal. It would be just amazing if I could find a bear (in any condition) for him for his birthday. Can the power of twitter find that person who has a tatty old brown bear tucked away in a cupboard? Fingers crossed.

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  • Reply Livi 29th June 2010 at 2:53 pm

    Aww that’s so sad! I wish you lots of luck in your search for him, would be so wonderful if you could reunite them!

    • Reply mrsljhall 29th June 2010 at 5:43 pm

      thank you – keep hoping!

  • Reply Emma 29th June 2010 at 5:36 pm

    Awwww… good luck with your search!! Have RT, hope the power of twitter helps your search for Bear Bear!! x

    • Reply mrsljhall 29th June 2010 at 5:44 pm

      thank you – some one, some where must have a cupboard full of them! x

  • Reply tattooed_mummy 30th June 2010 at 5:17 pm

    I haven’t seen your bear BUT can feel your pain. We had a similar experience when ‘Catcher’ went misisng for 12 months – he turned up in the loft! in a duvet that had been put up in storage!

    But that aside I can heartily reccomend a book called Tatty Ratty – I’ll review it soon on my blog because I love it, it’s all about a toy that gets lost, and his adventures, and how one day he is found again, slightly changed (due to the adventure!) in a toy shop :-)

    • Reply mrsljhall 30th June 2010 at 5:46 pm

      I’ve got a feeling we’ve read that book! Glad you found Catcher x

  • Reply Vicky 4th July 2010 at 12:51 pm

    dear God he is 9 years old for goodness sake! Maybe you shouldnt be pandering to this weirdness. You’re gonna make your boy grow up wimpy and wet. You should have taught him life goes on bear or no freakin bear, not went along with the whole “bear has lost his family boo hoo” story. What a load of tosh!!!

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 5:25 pm

      I find it really sad that you would take the trouble to comment on my blog only to say something spiteful.

      • Reply Mumrablog 4th July 2010 at 5:47 pm

        What a nasty comment, Vicky if you think this ladies blog is talking tosh then why don’t you stop wasting time to comment on it and do something else with your day, like pull wings off daddy long legs or something equally pointless and nasty.

    • Reply The Jelly Monster 4th July 2010 at 6:08 pm

      Obviously someone is very unhappy and gets there jollies by being nasty to other people. It’s quite sad really.

    • Reply Jon @ just a typical dad 4th July 2010 at 6:54 pm

      I’m thinking that when you were young you lost your bear and your parents didn’t care enough to find it or get you a new one!
      It’s sad that it makes you write nasty comments on great posts that trigger your repressed childhood memorys.
      I think you and your nastiness should go away and come back when you have sorted your issues and have something nice to say!
      Just saying!

      P.s great post :)

    • Reply hooker1uk 4th July 2010 at 10:49 pm

      Vicky grow up. I still have a teddy passed down to me from when i was a pip. and that was passed on 3 years ago to my son. Things like teddies are important to any child’s growing up.

      in my case it’s one of the final few things which bring good memories of when my parents were alive.

      Grow up and stop being a cretinous stupid idiot!
      if you want a scrap piddle off to not a parenting blog. *ANGRY FACE*

    • Reply TheBoyandMe 11th April 2015 at 10:37 am

      Jesus, maybe if you’d had a bear to care about as child then you wouldn’t have made such a heartless and nasty comment. It’s comments like that which have created a generation of men who have to be tough and ‘be a man’ who doesn’t show feelings and empathy for anyone. Very sad indeed.

  • Reply kailexness 4th July 2010 at 4:50 pm

    I wish we had spare bears, my two have teddies which their uncle gave them when they were born and they are quite expensive, my daughters – nearly 4 years on is very loved and sucked, she won’t sleep without teddy, he’s dressed up and stripped, thrown about and takes part in every game – he is on the verge of falling apart :-(

    Good luck with your search – will RT

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 5:23 pm

      thank you, maybe we need to set up a ‘toys reunited’ – or someone could make a fortune recreating bespoke toys to replace them

  • Reply christinemosler 4th July 2010 at 4:54 pm

    Oh I wish I could say ‘YES, here he is’ ! How sad and how lovely! My boys have favourite cuddlies too and we had to make them mini lifejackets when we were sailing, just in case! I hope you find him.

  • Reply rugbymadsdad 4th July 2010 at 5:29 pm

    I really hope you find the Teddy…i will keep an eye out for you…i had my first bear until her was disposed of when i was 14….so VICKY it never did me any harm having a bear until i was 14…….oh I was a wimp but still managed to serve my country in various conflicts over the years………

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 5:41 pm

      thank you – bears rule! x

  • Reply Toria 4th July 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Awwww, my son is 12 and still has the tatty beany lion he’s had since birth, though now it only really appears when he’s not feeling well. Hope you get a replacement :)

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 5:42 pm

      Aw that’s really nice, I like to think of the bear taking a place on a dusty bookshelf later in life! x

  • Reply Metajugglamum 4th July 2010 at 5:50 pm

    Hi Lisa.
    I was never into dolls as a kid but I had a mouse which I cuddled in bed. Much later, I then found my soul mate in a poor old bashed up odd looking bear that I picked up at a jumble sale … yes, at the age of 9. He was the ‘last toy standing’ at the end and was about to be thrown away. I felt sorry for him, paid my 5p (I still remember exactly how much he cost) and he became my favourite ever soft toy. Long after I stopped cuddling him at night he would still accompany me on every trip which involved an overnight stop and would sit on my pillow or bed-side table – where he actually still is to this day. He is a piece of my childhood who has collected memories throughout my weird and somewhat complex journey. He looks a tad more worn and battered than he even did back then but he has survived thus far. I’m not sure how, all things considered. He is sort of my good luck charm without the soppy bits and I would still be devastated if I lost him. I would like to say to the Lady who left such a jagged comment earlier that I find it really sad a) that she cannot relate to your post even from your child’s perspective as I find there is a wonderful element of ‘humanism’ in it, but more, that she obviously somehow satisfied a need for matriarchal exoneration in taking the time to comment in that way. What a shame. Don’t take it personally Darlin. Everyone has their demons. Just some folks choose to find an outlet for them by attacking other people.
    Hugs. MJM.x

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 5:55 pm

      You wise, lovely and beautiful creature you! I did take it personally to start with but I can see now that she obviously has her own issues here! Your bear sounds lovely – all the best ones are tatty and over loved! Thank you xx

  • Reply NickMyDaddycooks 4th July 2010 at 5:59 pm

    Dear Vicky,

    As anyone with a basic grasp of chidhood psychology will tell you, transitional objects play an extremely important role in the mental and emotional wellbeing of children. There is nothing whatsover “wimpy” about dealing with this situation as a loss, like all other losses. Indeed, it proves how useful transitional objects can be as it allows parents to explore important issues and feelings with their kids. I still have a hedgehog who is 35 years old – I am 37. He just sits on a chair (with my wife’s equivalent) and I see no issue with that. I am a well-rounded adult and do not view myself as unduly affected by having had important transitional objects.

    Oh, one last thing, the author of this blog happens to be one of the nicest, most thoughtful mummies any kid could wish to have. Neither her, nor her son, deserve to have to read the kind of futile and pointless attack you launched on them…

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 6:04 pm

      Thank you Nick, that was beautifully put (and the last bit made me cry!) xx

      • Reply Sleepless_Mum 4th July 2010 at 6:57 pm

        Well said Nick. I’m sorry I can’t help with the bear Lisa. I’ve often thought a ‘toys reunited’ website is much needed as sadly there are often appeals like this one. Someone locally put posters up on lamp-posts when their child lost their comforter. Your nine year old sounds like a lovely boy, not wimpy in any way. I hope my son is as empathatic (a crucial life skill!) as yours obviously when he’s the same age. Big hugs, Vicky’s comment was horrible x

  • Reply Metajugglamum 4th July 2010 at 8:19 pm

    Dear All, Dear Vicky,
    I have had another thought. Sorry, it happens occasionally. Perhaps Vicky never had a bear herself. If this is the case and she would like one, just to put on the shelf as a momento of good feeling (as I actually hate to judge people on the grounds of a few lines … perhaps there are a lot of other issues going on that we really don’t know about. Perhaps there are no underlying issues, just a bad day). But anyway, I would like to give her, You Vicky, the benefit of the doubt. Contact me on Twitter under @Metajugglamum and I will send you a bear of your very own. You can keep it or give it to your / another child … whoever would benefit from it the most. Call me ridiculous if you like, but I mean this with no undertone and no malice. Please do not take it in any other way.

  • Reply nudieprincess 4th July 2010 at 9:37 pm

    Hey Lisa,
    My little boy, who’s nearly three has a Monkey (Maurice) whom he adores. He could not sleep without him, so to that end, we also have a spare Maurice in the cupboard should disaster strike. I don’t doubt that in years to come he will outgrow Maurice, but he will be kept for sentimental reasons. I believe this to be the norm in many families given that my husband, who is 32 and a big strapping man (with no obvious psychological issues that I am aware of) still has his childhood comforter safely in a cupboard because it was an important part of his childhood that he remembers fondly.
    Vicky: You readily dish out (unconstructive) criticism, so I am going to assume that you won’t mind if I comment on my observations about you.I wonder if you are a Mother? If you are I wonder what kind of Mother you are. Firstly, I don’t remember Lisa saying anything in her post about her 9 year old carrying the Bear around with him all day, he likes to sleep with him at night. There’s nothing weird about that. If you read the post properly, you should have noticed that Lisa mentions her son has some issues with abandonment which is why he feels so attached to the Bear in the first place. These issues are not uncommon for children whose parents have been through a separation, also mentioned in the post.
    Secondly, the fact that you thought it appropriate to advise Lisa that her approach to parenting is going to encourage her Boy to grow up ‘wimpy and wet’ just goes further to illustrate your complete lack of empathy. This is what concerns me about your own parenting skills (not that any of us have the right to tell another how to parent). Affection teaches children how to empathise. Fact. Children that grow up without affection cannot empathise. There is a body of literature to support this.Your cold and unempathetic ‘harden the fuck up’ approach to parenting is most likely a reflection of your own upbringing. In other words, Vicky I don’t think you understand this situation properly. I certainly don’t think you are equipped to advise others how best to communicate with children. There are a lot of supportive comments here for Lisas post and none that agree with what you said. You might want to think about that. I found your comment genuinely distasteful.

    • Reply mrsljhall 4th July 2010 at 10:37 pm

      you are awesome. that is all x

  • Reply Jeni Arnold 4th July 2010 at 10:51 pm

    My 10yr old has a bear called “Bear” who he chose when he was 10mnths old, he sucked his nose so I bought him & produced him for his first birthday. When my son was 2 1/2 Bear was lost, we tried a replacement from America but though gratefully recieved he wasn’t the same. This is when we used ebay for the first time and found the exact same bear, he cost twice as much as the first but he and my son have never spent a night apart. My son is not embarrased by his bear it is just a part of who he is and he is no wimp!
    Hope you find a bear soon x

  • Reply Victoria 9th July 2010 at 9:17 am

    I am the ‘alledged’ Victoria who’s name and email address has been used on this site for some reason (this is the first time I have seen it and its only because someone has emailed me in relation to my ‘comments’) I did not put any of these comments on here and would never be so horrible or spiteful to do so! I have no idea who would do this but apologise for any upset caused. Best regards, The ‘real’ Victoria

    • Reply mrsljhall 9th July 2010 at 10:56 am

      Hi Victoria – thank you for letting me know. Seems there is a very unpleasant person out there using your name and work email to cause upset. Quite bizarre. Thanks again, Lisa

  • Reply Single Dad's Diary 9th July 2010 at 11:15 am

    Still got my teddy (minus his nose, which I bit off when teething) and “lamb chop” (who no longer makes the “baaaa” noise).

  • Reply martinr23 9th July 2010 at 11:24 am

    My 9 yr old daughter would be devastated if she lost her ‘Scruffy’ – a bear that my mum (who died 2 years ago) bought her when she was 2 years old. Wherever she sleeps she has to have him with her – yes even sleepovers with her friends!!

    Some time ago we were talking about why Scruffy is so special she say its because he reminds her of her grandma and how kind she was.
    She too would be devastated if she lost Scruffy.
    Great blog

    • Reply mrsljhall 9th July 2010 at 11:30 am

      Thanks Martin – both for reading and commenting :o) I love the fact that there are so many of these special bears in the world, such a lovely thought that all our children have memories and security in a fluffy (albeit chewed) toy always close at hand x

  • Reply Victoria 9th July 2010 at 2:46 pm

    Thankyou Lisa for your understanding. The responses hurt me ( I have no idea why seeing as I didnt write the remarks!!) I just wanted to add that I fully understand children and the importance of the things that make children secure. I am 36 and still have some of my childhood toys! My husband, also 36 still has big Panda and little Panda. I am not the monster perceived on this site!! I dont know who used my details and frankly dont care cause they are quite clearly very unpleasant. In the meantime I wish you well and hope you find your little boys bear.

  • Reply Photos #thegallery « MrsLJHall 13th October 2010 at 7:37 pm

    […] all remember ‘the bear‘ don’t you? Well here he is when he used to look plump and fluffy! Still have that […]

  • Reply theboyandme 2nd January 2011 at 8:31 pm

    Please tell me that you found more family for Bear Bear? I think it’s lovely that your boy is being a child & not pretending to be older than he is. I hate it when children are forced to grow up so quickly.

    I shall shame myself by revealing that my teddy bear came with me to France on my first holiday abroad, when I went with my sister, as a teenager. I was apprehensive, he was security. I left him in Paris at my sister’s friend’s house. I was heartbroken. A week later it was sent back with no questions asked.

    He’s now in my son’s toy collection along with his father’s equivalent!

    • Reply mrsljhall 2nd January 2011 at 9:46 pm

      Alas we never did find another Bear Bear! But we do still have the original so it’s not all bad xx

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