Continue The Conversation
As already stated I am a mother of three and I know the kind of conversations we have with our children.
"Look both ways when crossing the road"
"No, we don't put crayons in the plug sockets"
"No you cannot wear your snorkel to school, for sports day"
All things I have said to try and keep my children safe. But the conversation I have had with each of my children; is the conversation about inappropriate touching and strangers. We tell our children that if they are touched inappropriately by anyone, it is wrong. No one has the right to touch them in their private places, etc. The problem is that at times we end the conversation there. We have told them it is wrong but we also need to tell them what to do if it is happening to them.
Predators will tell the child, "Don't tell Mummy as you will get in trouble, as this is naughty". Reaffirming what the child has been told by the parent, also putting emphasis on the child that they are in the wrong. "Don't tell Daddy as he may go to prison", again putting fear into the child; that by talking they will get their parent in trouble.
We continue the conversation by telling our children that if someone is touching or hurting them, it is good to tell an adult. They won't be the one that will get into trouble by telling. Ensure they know that they will be listened to and give them a variety of people they know they can go to, they may feel awkward talking to an older person. I knew I could always speak to my older sister or auntie.
Children may find it hard to verbalise the words, tell them they can always write it down. In our house we have a worry box. The child can write a note detailing their worry; adding their name, place in the worry box and place an ornament onto the box. This tells me there is a worry and I can speak to them on a one to one basis without anyone around.
This may seem obvious but I have heard too many stories of children worried they would get into trouble, so did not speak up. Our children need to know about the danger but also the solution, and that they would be no bad consequence on them talking.
Thank You.......Be Kind to Others and More Importantly to Yourself