Is stranger really a danger?

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Let’s talk about child safety today. I stumbled upon this article and felt it was important to share it with you. I never really thought about it this way. And yet, yes, our kids shouldn’t be afraid of all strangers, you never know when they might need help and will be afraid to ask. And who is a stranger? It is hard to explain, and it is even harder for a little kid to practice when someone comes up, introduces himself/herself, and they are not strangers anymore. You’d be surprised how easy it is for an adult to cross this”stranger” line and win a child’s trust. Continue reading

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Children are the owners of their bodies

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This is another subject that might puzzle some parents but it is a very SERIOUS issue that we all need to think about. What is more important, your child’s future well-being and ability to respect his/her own body or your relative/friend’s temporarily hurt feelings? I know I pick my children’s side on this. No forced hugs, kisses or other physical displays of affection that have no meaning, it is much better to let your kids decide when and how they want to express their love for others. Continue reading

Obedience should not be the goal

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Do you believe in strict discipline? Do you use physical punishment at home? Do you make your children fear you? Would they be looking for emotional support elsewhere because they do not get it at home? Even at the price of their own bodily autonomy? Would they trust you enough to tell you that they have been sexually abused? Would you like to prevent that from happening to your child??? Think about these questions and research gentle discipline.

This article discusses sexual abuse and here is a short preview:
http://www.coe.int/t/dg3/children/1in5/Source/PublicationSexualViolence/Hitrec.pdf

“Having good communication with children is of key importance. It implies openness, determination, straightforwardness and a friendly, non-intimidating atmosphere. It can facilitate giving children clear guidelines to ensure their safety and teaching them how to recognise potential dangers. This is the only way for adults to pave the way for children to speak openly about their concerns and doubts, or disclose sexual abuse. Continue reading

Reasons not to hit your child

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Spanking is wrong. That is all I will say for now. Find out more from the article for yourself, and you will see why I feel this way.
I tried to offer a preview of most important points, but the whole article is much more informative:
http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/discipline-behavior/spanking/10-reasons-not-hit-your-child

“10 Reasons Not to Hit Your Child

1. HITTING MODELS HITTING
There is a classic story about the mother who believed in spanking as a necessary part of discipline until one day she observed her three- year-old daughter hitting her one-year-old son. When confronted, her daughter said, “I’m just playing mommy.” This mother never spanked another child.Children love to imitate, especially people whom they love and respect. They perceive that it’s okay for them to do whatever you do. Parents, remember, you are bringing up someone else’s mother or father, and wife or husband. The same discipline techniques you employ with your children are the ones they are most likely to carry on in their own parenting. The family is a training camp for teaching children how to handle conflicts. Studies show that children from spanking families are more likely to use aggression to handle conflicts when they become adults.
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Teaching children about abduction

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I know some people think we shouldn’t scare children and shouldn’t make them think all strangers are bad. I know that such abductions are rare and fail in comparison to other violent crimes against children. But you know what? They do happen, and they do take innocent lives.
I also think there is a difference between scaring children needlessly and teaching them to recognize dangerous behavior, and equipping them with important information that could potentially help save their life.
I am trying to introduce the concept to my 3 y/o by mentioning some things when we are out in public: explaining that sometimes mommy might not be there when something happens, and whom she could approach for help, or what she should NOT do if asked by someone she doesn’t know, or even someone she thinks she knows. Or what to do if she gets lost in a store. Things like that. I am planning to keep adding relevant information as she gets older, not to overwhelm her all at once with a scary concept and too much complicated advice.
Because it is better to be safe than sorry. And it is better to know I have tried to give her the tools to protect herself if I am not around. Now, let’s hope it never happens to you or anyone you know, of course.

I am going to copy the whole article here, because I just don’t think I can cut any information out this time:
http://www.denvercac.org/PreventAbduction.html

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Protect your children from predators

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I think we all established that tickling should be done very carefully, and should be stopped as soon as a child either asks for it to stop or shows that it is not pleasant anymore.
I am sure loving and respectful parents will know exactly when not to cross the line. But how about non-parents who try to tickle your children? What do you do and how should you respond?

This is a VERY important article for all parents to read at least once in their life. You can never know enough to prevent abuse until you learn how it happens and what signs to look for: http://www.renegadepopo.com/how-pedophiles-groom.php

“How Pedophiles Seduce Children:

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To tickle or not to tickle?

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Tickling is such a touchy subject, I know some will disagree but hopefully this will help some of you to look at it from a different angle. All I know is that I personally hate tickling, I have bad memories about it from my childhood, I can’t stand anyone even hinting at trying to tickle me. Do I want my kids to have the same memories in the future? Definitely not, so we don’t abuse tickling in our house and only do it for a short while if kids ask for it. There are other wonderful alternatives to family bonding like this great article from HandinHand Parenting explains. Continue reading