That’s what a man told 1st K today as he offered my child an ice cream. “Breath!” I told myself as I imagined all the what-ifs, could-haves and would-haves when 1st K told me about his trip home. Oh the horror. It was chess today so he did the whole public transport thing again. To those of you who read Unwrapping the Cottonwool, you’ll know how difficult it was for me to let go and my resolve to do the unwrapping.
For all I know, the nameless, faceless stranger could easily have been someone doing a random act of kindness but I somehow doubt that. Every normal adult knows not to hand kids treats at random. At least that’s how my mind works. I could be wrong but we teach our kids not to talk to strangers so obviously as a stranger you won’t just go offering a random kid something.
Fortunately my son knows the drill and briefly declined before marching off. *Then I exhaled* Followed by a prayer of thanksgiving for God’s grace. He got home safe and sound. *Make mental note to self* “Don’t worry about the what-ifs, could-haves and would-haves. You’ve reached a mommy-stone and there’s no going back”
I’ve been teaching my kids about safety since even before they could understand what safety was. I’ll never forget how ‘Middle K’ used to frown at strangers and tell them: “Don looka me! My mommy say I nocka talka stangers” when she was little. She was a very cute toddler (like really cute) with fat rosie cheeks. People were drawn to her and would want to talk to and touch her (much to my annoyance because I didn’t know whether they’d washed their hands after they used the bathroom). There were a few occasions that I was approached by kid modelling agency scouts too. Yes she was that cute and she’s my daughter so I just had to say it again 🙂
While I’m sure I’ll never stop worrying about my kids safety, I know that I’m doing the best I can to prepare them for the world out there. A few of my safety lessons/tips are:
1) Stranger Danger
2) Setting boudaries with people we do know as well (because most molestors are usually people you know like relatives, teachers, neighbours…)
3) Fear factor – Trust your gut. Yes kids have that too and you know “If it walks like a duck…” Kids yelp for help and run, run, run.
4) Do not answer the telephone. Although I must admit this one never seemed to work because my brood dashes to the phone at the first ring and answers mid second ring so I’ve changed it to “Do not give any personal information”. That worked much better.
5) Do not open the door to strangers.
6) Ensure that they know telephone numbers (parents as well as emergency numbers like 107).
7) Do not remove plugs from electrical sockets but if you do (because kids, at least mine, don’t always listen) flick the switch off first.
8) Do not touch electrical appliances that’s plugged in when your hands and or feet are wet.
9) Do not play with fire/ hot water.
10) Pedestrian safety. Look right, left and Right again for oncoming traffic.
What safety tips do you teach your kids?