My boy called me into his room half an hour after bedtime. The bogeyman is in his cupboard, he says, pulling the blanket up over his head. I make a mental note to have a stern talk to his big sister for telling him stories like that. But how do I deal with this now? I get an idea.
"Do you know why the bogeyman hides in your cupboard?"
He shakes his head, poking it out from the blanket just far enough to make eye contact.
"Let me tell you something about the bogeyman: you're stronger than him, faster, bigger and scarier than him. The reason he hides in your cupboard is not to jump out and scare you. It's because he's terrified that you might find him. He's sitting in the dark, huddled in the corner, crying and desperately hoping that the little boy in the bed doesn't open the door, because when you do that, the bogeyman dies. He evaporates in a squeak and a puff of smoke, and all you ever see is your empty cupboard. Come on, let's try it. Open the door and make that bogeyman go away."
He gets a thoughtful look, then gets cautiously happy about it. He makes his way over to the cupboard door and looks up at me again.
"Are you sure?"
"I survived a hundred bogeymen this way. Trust me."
He grips the handle and pulls the door open sharply.
Mokalus of Borg
PS - I think this is how I'll deal with the bogeyman when I have kids.
PPS - Assuming my kids are the kind on which this will work.