There has never been a time when protecting children was not important. Most would agree, however, that today things are quite different. Children, including adolescents are exposed to so much today from peers, television
and, of course, the internet. This recent episode of the Dr. Phil show provides a glimpse into the reality of the times in which we live. (Click Here)
Hearing stories about young girls running away with adult men who are nothing but predators makes us all pause. Its no wonder this has spawned a whole new industry of electronic surveillance tools, manuals and more designed to help households and professionals better serve the young. How do we help as parents and as communities?
Well, speak to anyone – whether its your religious leader or psychologists who specialize in serving children – and they all agree that the two primary components for success in protecting children are observation and communication.
Teachers can observe for sudden changes in a child’s behavior, especially if that child has become suddenly withdrawn. This could indicate trauma. Parents can be quick to listen without offering prompt, harsh judgments so a child knows they have a confidante, regardless of the sensitivity of the subject.
Finally parents have to be alert to social media and other online activity involving your children. A mature balance between privacy and parental supervision must be struck if children are to be truly protected. A PARENT IS FIRST AND FOREMOST A “PROTECTOR”. Children need rules and examples. With these rules comes consequences for breaking them. It gives life structure for the future.
Its a different world, but with love and strategy, we can continue to rear positive, well-adjusted children, shielded as much as possible from dangerous people and situations
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