Pedophiles are predators and as such focus on the weakest link in their “hunt”. It is much easier for them to attract a shy, frightened, nervous and alert child, who acts like a victim in advance.
They don’t want to get involved with a child who will voice their opinion. They are unlikely to harass a child who is unwilling or unable to be so easily manipulated.
“Let’s not victimize children unknowingly by teaching them to be afraid in advance. Let’s try to equip them with skills that are not attractive to predators,” coach Mia Von Scha advises on her blog.
What should we children learn as parents?
How to behave with confidence
How does your child feel, see themselves? Teach him self-confidence by allowing him to do things on his own, give him his independence, recognize his achievements without giving him too much praise. Recognize his problems without helping him right away, allow him to make decisions.
Make sure your child gets their daily dose of love and attention – hugs, kisses, kind words and time together. A child whose needs are not met is much more vulnerable.
The inviolability of one’s own body
Children need to know that their body belongs to them and no one has anything to do with it without their consent. As parents, sometimes we should step back and know how often we give them the opposite signal – we stress how and when to wash, how to comb our hair, how to dress, and how and when to greet or kiss on the cheek.
“We have to start respecting the child’s right to reject these things. It’s hard for parents to accept and it’s not always easy to believe that our offspring won’t grow up to be a dirty adult without an education. But the The relationship to their body and to themselves must begin at home. If we don’t respect this, we are inadvertently preparing the child for others to do the same,” explains the counsellor.
How to trust your instincts
The human brain receives a lot more information at an unconscious level than we realize. We’ve all had a moment sometimes when we just felt like something was wrong, and in the end, it turned out that it really was. We can’t explain how we knew, it just happened. It is the ability to respond to subtle stimuli from the unconscious.
“We need to teach kids to connect and trust that wisdom. We do that best by listening to them when they say they don’t want anything. We respect when they don’t want to be with someone,” describes another important expert skill.
Being able to express your opinion
Children need to know that ‘no’ means ‘no’. The only way to teach them is to let them say it and respect them when they say it.
They also need to know that their voice is as important, relevant and respected as the voice of adults. They learn by having the opportunity to talk, to participate in family decisions and to listen to them.
Raising a child with a strong will is very difficult. But this feature, which we often don’t like, is the one that may one day save their lives, experts say.
What to do in an emergency
Rather than avoiding danger, try to teach your child how to behave in different situations. For example, what if you get lost in a mall? “My strategy, for example, was to find a mother with a pram or a smaller child and ask for help”, gives the example of Mia Von Scha.
And what to do when a foreign adult approaches them and offers them to go see the puppies? In this case, the first step is always to consult your mother.
What should I do if someone touches a child without your permission? Talk to an adult, call for help, etc. “The best way to teach children similar skills is through play. Let them come up with their own ideas on how to solve the problem. Also, in our daily lives, we often mistakenly believe that shouting and making a scene is never appropriate. But sometimes it’s necessary, and they need to know,” he adds.
How to defend yourself
“I sincerely believe that every child should have at least a basic training in martial arts or self-defense. Knowing how to handle difficult situations adds self-confidence, which is very uncomfortable for predators. It also gives children another advantage in that they will have the advantage of having a moment of surprise in an unpleasant situation, ”explains the expert.
One can only hope that your children won’t have to use similar skills in these situations, but once that happens, it’s better to have defensive skills than none.
“Of course, we must also mitigate our own fear so that our children do not feel our nervousness and the belief that the world is fundamentally in the wrong place. Of course, as parents, we must be alert and vigilant about possible dangers. , but we are also realistic about our concerns,” concludes the expert.