Wednesday, March 25, 2009

So what does a stranger look like?

This was the topic of tonight's karate class. And boy did the mommies & daddies learn some interesting things!
Sifu Helana asked the children "So what does a stranger look like?"
  • Someone who wears a black shirt & a black hat.
  • Someone who wears a black mask.
  • What's a stranger?
  • I don't know.

Yikes! These answers were from the elementary school aged children. The middle schoolers gave appropriate answers. Thank G-d.

There have been some pretty bad things going on around the country with strange people driving through neighborhoods & adults in schools doing inappropriate things. These are definitely scary times. Erin is not allowed to play outside without an adult being present. Period. Don't ask. In fact, don't even think about asking. Yes. I've put my foot down on this topic.

Unfortunately, the "bad things" aren't happening just around town. They're happening in our neighborhoods, at the stores & in the schools. The children played a game with Sifu where she asked if an action was "okay" or "not okay." I'm worried by how many actions the children got wrong. And, yes, Erin got too many wrong for me to take this sitting down. We'll be having a talk with her in the next day or two.

When I was about 8 or 9, there were some bad things going down in the town I lived in. And this was back in the 70s! I can clearly remember my mom asking me what I would do if someone came upto me & asked for help or what I would do if someone drove up & asked me for "directions." I think that was the turning point for my mom. She finally realized just how naive I was & made sure that I knew better from that point on.

One of the things that we use is a code word. When someone is picking Erin up from school or camp, they are required to have the code word. And I didn't make it easy either!

PLEASE! Don't wait for something to G-d forbid happen. Cut it off before it even starts. Have that talk with your child(ren) today.


Sandra said...

This is so scary. You know that I had that talk with the girls a couple of days ago and I will have it again in the next few days to come....

Vivian M said...

We were just having this conversation with Kerri a few days ago! She has a few books on safety, one is all about not talking to strangers. And we warned her about someone in a car or telling her they have candy or need help finding their puppy. It is so sad we have to corrupt her innocence with talk about "bad guys" but I would rather be safe than sorry.
When I was 10, a volunteer firefighter than worked just down the block from where I lived in Sunrise tried to molest me. I was so innocent I had no idea what he was talking about. Thank goodness my sister, who was jealous he would not let her "play" with us, tattled and my father confronted the young man. He never showed his face in our neighborhood again, and I was none the wiser to what almost happened. But it scared my parents, who were as naive as I was, or thought we were in a "safe" neighborhood and did not have to talk to us about things.
And just because a pedophile wears a GPS tracking device does not mean s/he is monitored 24/7 live. Don't have a false sense of security, even if you live in a gated community! (Gates do not keep people out).

Monica said...

Hi, thanks for stopping by my blog. I enjoyed reading yours!!! Yes, you can't start to early with stranger danger!!! I think of the little girl in Florida Haleigh who was abducted right out of her bed. I won't be letting our son play outside by himself either, even though we have a fenced yard, we live in the middle of town too. take care-Monica @

PIPO said...

I still have some time before I let my girl out of my sight but it already makes me nervous to think about.

Candy said...

Wonderful topic. Yes, it is so important to have these conversations with your children. I have even talked a little to Rachel, who is only 3. I had this talk with my daughter Rebecca and even as an adult, while she was away at college, I still talked to her about it. Better to be safe than sorry.

Super Mommy said...

We've been watching a stranger safety (Safe Side) which has been helpful. I'm a little on the overprotective side myself and will not allow my girls out without proper supervision. You are smart to start teaching Erin now!

Love Letters To China said...

Completely terrifies me! We have spoken to Natalie about this on numerous times but I have a feeling the wrong answers would still come out of her mouth if we asked her today. I truly saddens me that we have to discuss these topics to our children!

The video "Safe Side" that was mentioned in another comment is a great one to watch. I purchased that when Natalie was a couple of years old knowing the day would eventually come that we would need to watch it. It's worth looking into.

Dawn said...

Words to live by.

and oddly enough my word verifcation was "codeb"