Stranger danger- a threat to the essence of childhood

Feb 29

We believe that our children are our treasures. So, we try to protect them from every single danger that they are likely to face. Some of us even give them mobile phones to be carried with them wherever they go, just to ensure that they are safe. One of the most instrumental thing to teach children is about “stranger danger”. It is always believed that “Precaution is better than cure” but we often forget to follow the same rule.

Let us understand what ‘Stranger Danger’ actually means?

“Stranger danger” is a term coined to tell about the existence of threats from unknown people. There have been several instances where strangers have posed threats to several kids. This does not mean that all the strangers that one encounters are bad. On the same footing not all the strangers that one meets are good. Therefore, parents have to take extra care and caution t ensure that their kids are safe.

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Teaching kids about Stranger Danger

Merely asking your kids to maintain a distance from strangers is not enough. You will have to train them about the potential dangers arising out of dangerous situations that involve strangers. Here are a few tips to help your kids understand the gravity of the situation too.

  • If your kids are alone at home, tell them not to open the door for anyone. Make a list of all the family friends and people with their telephone numbers. Tell your kids to seek help from any of them if needed.
  • If your kids have planned for an outing with friends or a movie plan has been cooked up, then all you can do is ask your children to stay in the group.
  • “No means No”. This is an important rule that you have to teach your children. Tell them that if any stranger forcefully tries to cause any harm, they can always say “No” loudly and try to run away from the stranger as soon as possible.
  • Teaching your kids about good and bad strangers is crucial. You can explain about it with the help of several examples.
  • Teaching cyber safety rules and the dangers that exist online can help them to identify the potential dangers and prevent them from engaging into anything unethical. For instance teaching kids about bullying and harassment can be helpful.
  • Ensure that your kids know your residential address, residential telephone number or your mobile phone numbers so that they can contact you when in danger. Preparing them for the worst situation sometimes can be fruitful. At the same time tell your kids not to reveal any personal information to strangers.
  • Instructing your kids not to accept any gifts, chocolates or money from strangers can be a good idea.
  • Alluring online games, offers and competitions can be extremely dangerous. Explain to them about the potential dangers of engaging in such activities.
  • Tell your children to believe in their own instinct and try too sense dangers. You can use many examples to make them understand this.

It’s time that we understand that we can save our own kids from dangerous situations and strangers by teaching them about ‘Stranger danger’.

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