My beautiful daughter HG came home the other day scared out of her mind. There had been an adult man taking pictures of her and following her. I showed her the right response, complimented her for hiding and running home and then I called the police. Unfortunately, we live in a “bad” neighborhood so the police didn’t do anything.
A couple of days later I read on the news that a 10 year old had been attacked but luckily she got away. The guy had apparently asked her and a friend to help him search for his dog. He showed them a picture of it on his phone so they went with him. The other girl had to go home soon after and the guy attacked the 10 year as soon as they were alone. That freaked the hell out of me!
I realized I had to teach her about stranger danger so I started looking around for some tips about how and what to say. After all, no child should experience this.
We’ve always told our HG that she should NEVER go with someone she doesn’t know and we’ve even made a “password” so if something happens and we need someone to get her, they have to tell her the password. I’m actually a bit concerned that she won’t remember to ask when/if the times comes. We’ve even thought about asking a friend of us, that she doesn’t know, to try.
We’ve also talked to her about this when we hear it on the news or something. Of course, in a kid friendly, not to scary way. We also discuss this every time we have see a kid on their own, at the airport, at the mall and basically everywhere we don’t think a child should be alone.
We’ve also talked a little (not enough) about stranger and her phone/ipad/computer. She’s not allowed to answer secret numbers/numbers she doesn’t know, or add someone as a friend in a game she’s playing.
We’ve also assured her that in these cases it’s okay to not answer, run away, yell or basically be rude.
At Free for kids I found a lot of good worksheets to teach this a little bit better and I really recommend it.
They point out that you should teach your kid to be on alert if they are not with an adult and..
- A stranger approaches and starts talking to them or asking questions
- they think they are being followed
- a vehicle stops and they are asked to get inside
- someone offers them candy/invites them to see his puppies…
- someone asks them to ignore your rules, asks them to keep a secret
After she experienced this she always has to keep her phone with her when she goes outside, she has to answer as soon as we call or call us if she notices a missed call.
What do you do with your kids about stranger danger?