It’s so important for parents to be vigilant in keeping kids close in public places but also, to be extra careful when leaving them at home even with trusted relatives or friends.
Because unimaginable tragedies can happen in a matter of seconds, even in broad daylight.
Just recently, a 63-year-old grandfather in Pagadian City, Zamboanga del sur was arrested for child molestation.
One of his victims, a 7-year-old girl whose identity has been kept anonymous, came to her mother crying and saying she had been molested. She also positively identified the man as the one who molested her and one of her playmates.
You can watch the full report here.
The important thing for parents to remember is that child molesters or rapists can be anyone, more often than not, it’s the person you least expect.
Constantly remind your kids of these things.
A predator may seem nice and generous
They may be a superior or well-respected member of society. So remind your kids that just because someone does not look scary, it doesn’t mean that person means them no harm.
Even if the stranger is say, a kind old, woman, it doesn’t mean that this person is harmless. They can easily be an accomplice used by the actual predator
The ‘Bathing Suit’ Method
Remind your kids of the difference between good touch and bad touch. Anything that makes them uncomfortable, even if it’s done by a relative or a trusted friend, should be considered ‘bad touch’.
In order for kids to remember what can’t be touched, teach them that what is covered up while wearing a bathing suit is absolutely off limits.
If someone does touch them in that area, remind them to tell you immediately.
Do not be scared, but be careful
It’s also important to reassure children that not all grown-ups who aren’t their parents mean them harm.
This is vital to their development because they should also learn to trust other people but it should be a knowledgeable kind of trust.
READ: Protect your child from being raped in her classroom, at home and more!
On the next page, find out how to teach kids to protect themselves when in public
The case of a 3-year-old girl who was raped and killed in early 2015 sheds light on the dangers of public places even during the day.
Reports say that the suspect found the little girl wandering alone in the public market. The victim’s mother, Marivic, 33, told police that they had gone to an eatery in the market for breakfast.
She went to the comfort room for a while but when she came out, her daughter was nowhere to be found.
After she quickly told her husband and reported her child missing to the police, witnesses claimed they had last seen the little girl with a known drug addict, Ramelo Hawgin.
Hawgin later admitted to the heinous crime, and after a medico-legal examination confirmed it, he was charged with rape and homicide.
When in public places, kids should remember these things.
Keep little ones close, not just in view
Even if you are walking only a few steps behind or ahead of your little one, it’s so easy for them to be snatched or led away into a crowd in the blink of an eye.
So it’s important to walk alongside, holding hands.
Take them everywhere with you (even the rest room)
It doesn’t matter if you have to go to the rest room or the changing room, your little one has to be with you at all times. Even if you can see their little feet outside the stall door, they can easily wander off and you can’t chase after them immediately.
Encourage their curiosity but teach them to be alert
Kids get easily distracted especially when they’re in a new place. So teach them to remain focused even as they explore their surroundings. Hold their hands, pay close attention, answer their questions no matter how silly.
This won’t just be a way to keep them safe, but a way to bond with them as well.
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