Teaching about safety to your kids
Safety is major concern for parents worldwide, not only because of external threats but also due to intrinsic dangers inside home. Even when the risk level varies from one place to another, certainly kids, especially the little ones are in danger almost constantly and even when parents would like to be there all the time to minimize risks, that's not always possible, thus teaching about safety to your kids from the very beginning it's a clever way to be with them even when you are not present on a given moment.
Of course you won't teach self defense to a little baby, but while your kids grow up, it's possible to teach them several safety topics they may handle at a given age; in fact, if by the age of 10 your kid knows the basics about safety, the chances of suffering an accident or being involved on risky behaviours declines dramatically.
Next you'll find a brief guideline to teach your kids about safety on a daily basis.
1. Confidence. Your kids must trust on you; no matter the situation or how tired you are; if your kid comes to you worried about any security or safety topic, you must always pay attention and try to resolve the issue. Your kids must be aware you are always available in cases of threats, no matter how serious it is.
2. Don't turn yourself on a menace. Many times kids don't tell their parents about a potential risky situation because they are afraid of parent's complaints or punishments, especially if the situation arises from kids' responsibility, thus first thing to do is to provide support and once things get better, talk about the consequences.
3. Listen to your kids. More than 60% of external threats come from someone the family knows, a close relative or a friend. So if your little kids says something about a suspect behaviour from someone close to the family, keep your eyes wide open! Probably it's true.
4. Encourage your kids to tell you if they are abused by anyone. Most of times kids are afraid of consequences or have been menaced by the abuser with even worse consequences if they tell anyone what happened. Your kids must be sure they count on you no matter how bad the situation looks; so they have to be able to communicate all kind of abuses, from verbal up to physical without being afraid you won't believe them.
5. Pay attention to abuse signals. On an ideal world the above item would be enough to cover this topic, but on real life kids won't say nothing many times if they are abused, especially when the abuse come from school partners (bullying), so pay attention to any behavioural or physical signs of abuse in order to identify the problem soon. On a next post we'll be talking about these signs.
As you may see there's too much to do regarding safety, this first part is focused on what we could name as "passive" safety measures; on a next post we'll talk about "active" prevention of risks; meanwhile try to identify all potential risks close to your family in order to minimize them as much as possible.