“Don’t Talk to Strangers and Other Parenting Myths”
by Alyssa Dver
No doubt, parenting is tricky. Parenting information changes all the time plus everyone feels compelled to give their personal, often contradicting, opinions. Unfortunately, even some of the basic “rules” of parenting can’t be trusted. Here we discuss four such myths that can make life or death differences.
I am a careful, watchful parent and my kids are well behaved so they will never get lost.
It happens to virtually everyone: 7 out of 10 children will experience being lost at least once in their lives. 90% of families will be impacted and the traumatic memories of these incidents will forever remain in the minds of both the parent and child. We teach our children to be curious and independent but then we scold then for getting accidentally lost. Therefore, it is actually good parents that realize this is a common situation. They proactively teach their children that getting lost can be dangerous and they all know what to if it happens. While most incidents result in safe returns, both children and adults often retain traumatic memories for the rest of their lives.
Don’t talk to strangers.
Don’t put identification outside of your child’s clothing.
Safe identification includes a cell phone number that is visible and easily accessible on a child. If the child is lost, another person can quickly call to reunite the onsite caregiver. Do not hide the information in a shoe or in the child’s clothing. You do not want a stranger undressing your child to find such a clue. Even if your child knows their home phone number, you don’t want to continuously be dialling your home voicemail to see if there is any information about your lost child.
Many parents worry about having a child’s name visible. Even though most children will willingly give a stranger their name, there are dozens of other ways that a predator can lure your child away. However, putting the child’s address is actually very dangerous because in the wrong hands, your home can become a target. Whether going to a mall, to a ballgame, or to school, young children should always have safe identification visibly on them.
My entire family dresses in the same color when we go to a crowded place.
These four parenting myths are just some of the unfortunate bad parenting advice that has been passed down for generations and not been updated given new technology and information. Realize that these myths can be very harmful to your child and be a smart parent by preparing yourself and your family. With less effort than it takes to put on a seatbelt, teach your children not to get lost and what to do in case it happens.
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