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How do I talk to my kids about strangers?

I have had the misfortune of dealing with sexual abuse personally. and that has driven me to be overly protective of my own chidren (my husband calls me paranoid), but I just can't help how instictually I feel to protect my child. I want to know how to deal with the discussion of "strangers" or even maybe family or friends (which I know all too well) who do the harm. How the heck do I talk to a four year old about what an adult should or should not do? I dont want to scare him, but I do not know how to approach the issue. Any suggestions would be very appreciated.

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Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 3:18 AM on Oct. 24, 2008 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Answers (11)
  • why don't you do a google search for "teaching children about stranger danger" or "stanger danger for kids" or something along those lines.
    Lornamay

    Answer by Lornamay at 3:28 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • This is the BEST age to start the talks.
    Good Touch - Bad Touch.
    1. Any where your bathing suit covers is OFF limits to anyone else.
    2. Not all bad touches are in those spots.. Any touch that makes you uncomfortable is bad touching.
    3. Have the child list who they can tell if someone makes them uncomfortable.
    4. That they will NEVER get in trouble if they tell. No matter what anyone else tells them.

    I am currently seeing a profesional councelor about this issue. (long story) PM me .. there are a lot of things I never thought about.. this is a scary world we live in.. and our kids need to know we are here to protect them... and the best way to protect them is to INFORM them.
    4xmommy2008

    Answer by 4xmommy2008 at 3:38 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • i am the same way i just tell my kids that there is bad people out there and only talk to the people i tell them its ok to talk to i tel them the bad people can hurt them sometimes it works and sometimes it dont
    wendy232425

    Answer by wendy232425 at 7:34 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • The best thing I found for my children was this video called "The Safe Side" by John Walsh. They LOVED it and all remember the lessons they teach in it.
    Before I bought it I always told them that if anyone they didn't know tried to talk to them, give them candy, or pick them up to scream and run really fast. I also taught them about innapropriate touching. They all know noone is allowed to touch them in their "special" places and to never be afraid to tell me or their dad or grandmothers no matter what anyone told them would happen. It's a hard subject to get across, but it's well worth it!

    thesafeside.com
    KennsWifey

    Answer by KennsWifey at 8:40 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • I like the books about strange danger. My daughter talks to everyone, so I have to teach her the right and wrong ones. I have taught her that police officers are their to help and are not scary. One way, I have a friend who is an officer and he stops by the house in uniform all the time. Another male friend that she loves is an officer and I remind her all the time and he has come to pick her up to take her to play. When you are shopping have your kids pick out someone who they think looks like a nice person to ask something. Like what their name is, this seems to be working for me. She always picks women, and usually ones with kids. This way if she should need help, she knows who is safe to ask for it.
    medicmomof2

    Answer by medicmomof2 at 9:28 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • Pick someone who LOOKS nice to talk to ?????
    Let me guess .. medicmomom - all strangers/ bad people look scary - - right???
    Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
    You need to teach her - no matter what the appearance is - they are a stranger and there is always a potential danger !!!
    If you want her to ask for help - i suggest you teach her to find someone who works at wherever you are. .. not just any random STRANGER that LOOKS nice.
    The most dangerous predators in society.. are the ones that don't look like predators.
    Being a "good" preadator - is knowing EXACTLY how to look and act like the PERFECT person.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:39 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • Great question! Great responses. Getting a video to begin with sounds like a good choice. Here are my additional ideas (from being in therapy, too). Watch the video without the child first. Educate the child at his/her level and attention span. Use a matter of fact voice, not upset. The timing of talking about this subject to children can be helpful.For example, after doctor visits, before entering a theme park, and especially after any incidents that may be confusing to the child. I found that with my kids it worked best to bring up the subject again on a different day to see what they retained. Plus, I answered their questions as simply as possible so as not to overwhelm them or scare them. I try my best still to keep the channels of communication open.
    grammytothree

    Answer by grammytothree at 10:53 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • I LOVE the book "Protecting the Gift" by Gavin de Becker.. and actually there are strangers you can teach children to go to.. women statistically are far safer to go to than say a security mall officer who is male. A woman is statistically going to stay with a child until they are returned to their family. But I'm not going to get into a debate here... I HIGHLY recommend the book as well as the prequel for women, which is "The Gift of Fear". He is a safety and awareness expert.
    KnoxvilleDoula

    Answer by KnoxvilleDoula at 10:58 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • here are some up front tips on what to teach your kid(s) on safety with "strangers".
    http://www.ncjrs.gov/html/ojjdp/psc_english_02/intro.html
    4xmommy2008

    Answer by 4xmommy2008 at 11:54 AM on Oct. 24, 2008

  • 4xmommy2008 4xmom... This is the BEST age to start the talks. Good Touch - Bad Touch. 1. Any where your bathing suit covers is OFF limits to anyone else. 2. Not all bad touches are in those spots.. Any touch that makes you uncomfortable is bad touching. 3. Have the child list who they can tell if someone makes them uncomfortable. 4. That they will NEVER get in trouble if they tell. No matter what anyone else tells them. I am currently seeing a profesional councelor about this issue. (long story) PM me .. there are a lot of things I never thought about.. this is a scary world we live in.. and our kids need to know we are here to protect them... and the best way to protect them is to INFORM them.


     


     


    Awesome advice!

    hibicent

    Answer by hibicent at 1:25 PM on Oct. 24, 2008

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