- Invite friends and family into a conversation about keeping kids safe from child sexual abuse. Each person has his or her own communication style, but here are a couple of ice-breakers to consider:
- Let people know you went to a Parenting Safe Children workshop and why you’ve decided to invite all of the adults in your child’s life onto your prevention team.
- Hang your body safety-rules poster in a prominent location, like the Stiever Family poster to the right, and let your family members and friends know about the rules and why they are important.
- Consider giving a friend or family member Off Limits: A Parent’s Guide to Keeping Kids Safe from Sexual Abuse, with a personal inscription about why it’s important to you.
- Bring up body safety just as you would any other safety topic – e.g. “I’m so glad you got a car seat with all those safety components. Can I tell you about our latest safety measure?”
- As children go off to play, remind both the children and the adults about your family’s four body-safety practices:
- Everyone plays with their clothes on.
- No one touches private parts.
- We don’t keep secrets.
- If you feel unsafe in any way, come tell a trusted adult.
By communicating these safety practices in front of other adults, you are modeling prevention and opening the door for conversation.
- The holidays are a time of greetings and affection, so it’s particularly important to remember that children and teens are safer when they get to choose when and with whom to show affection. If a family member or friend wants to greet your child with a hug or kiss, and your child does not want to, then you are being presented with a wonderful teachable moment and an opportunity to stand up for your child.
Grandma: “Oh, it’s so good to see you. Give grandma a hug.”
Mom or Dad: “I know you’re a hugger Mom, but we’ve taught Ben that he gets to choose when he shows affection and it looks like he doesn’t want to hug right now.”