Crime is inevitable. Children are more prone to be victims of crimes. Crimes such as sexual abuse, abduction, and assault are more common to victimize young people. Children must understand that the world is not safe, and that anything bad can happen anytime. They must learn to protect themselves and they must understand that they cannot always be protected by their family and friends. With this understanding, it is necessary for parents to teach their children how to be safe and how to protect themselves.
Teach Your Children Without Scaring Them
An important step in teaching children is to talk to them in a manner where they wouldn’t be intimidated and that parents are there to listen to them should there be a problem. Parents must be approachable and open to discuss matters to their children. The more approachable parents are, the easier it would be for children to speak their mind and open up their problems. Children are more susceptible to trouble if they are too afraid to ask for advice because they feel intimidated to talk to their parents.
When teaching children about how to protect themselves, it is important for parents to teach them about these matters without scaring them. Instead of instilling fear, parents should instill readiness and decisiveness should unfortunate situations arise. Parents must teach their children to not worry, but rather to know what to do (van der Zande, n.d.). Fear may cause panic. The more a person panics, the lesser their logical reasoning becomes. It would mean great danger if that happens.
Bad And Safe Strangers
The most common threat to children and parents alike are strangers. To children, strangers are people whom their family does not know well or not at all. Strangers are capable of harming children and for this reason, children should be taught to be wary of strangers. However, it should also be taught that not all strangers are bad. Children should know the difference between bad and safe strangers and that not all bad strangers are look scary but even appealing. US citizens can check people with suspicious behavior in their neighborhood. Parents should teach children how to recognize safe strangers that they may approach should emergency situations arise. These strangers may be police, teachers, principals, or other types of strangers familiar to the child (National Crime Prevention Council, n.d.).
Sixty percent of abusers are family friends, thirty percent are their own family, and ten percent are strangers. Parents who wish to educate their children about sexual abuse and how to protect themselves from it must be open and approachable to their children. Children must be comfortable talking to their parents so that they may be able to voice out their anxiety and other uncomfortable feelings they may have. Children must be taught to speak up if they feel uncomfortable about the way a certain person is behaving towards them and that it is okay to say “no”. Parents are to teach their children about different body parts, and how they as children should not be touched just by anyone.
Teach Your Children To Protect Themselves Online
Nowadays, children are exposed to online media. They register to online games and social networking. Parents must protect and at the same time teach their children to protect themselves online. Parents must encourage their children to keep their passwords secret. Children must be told not to divulge their passwords to anyone and that as much as possible to not use public computers to reduce chances of hacking. Parents must be wary of the websites being accessed by their child and should educate their children on which sites are safe and which are not.
Establish rules regarding age limit, who they communicate with (avoid contact with strangers), and privacy matters. Parents must teach their children never to share personal information online and should there come a time that children disregard too much rules laid out by parents, they should know when to delete their children’s accounts (Microsoft Safety & Security Center, n.d.).
Children Must Know How To….
One of the most important lessons parents must teach their children is how to handle dangerous situations. Parents must teach their children how to recognize suspicious behavior and how to react to them. Children must know who and where to run to in case of an emergency. Children must be wary of a crime and if a crime is being committed. They must know what they must do if they were accosted. Parents must teach their children how to avoid getting themselves into those kinds of situations. Running to safety and calling for help are the basics.
The world today is full of crime. Unfortunately, the innocent often fall prey to it more than others. Adults are obligated to educate the young to protect themselves and to preserve these young lives for the better. It is imperative that children should know how to protect themselves and that they should know that life is not a cakewalk.