Ryan is at the age where we've had serious discussions with him about "stranger safety."
And I hate it.
I know these are talks we need to have to keep our kids safe.
But I hate it because Ryan is inquisitive. And he's not satisfied with just having the knowledge that he should only fully trust Mom, Dad, Grandparents, and select relatives and close family friends.
He wants to know why.
Why should he never accept toys or candy from strangers? Why would they try and give him those things if they were mean? Why would any stranger try to get him into their car? Why would someone lie to him, or tell him that Mommy said he is supposed to go with them? What would they do to him?
I try and explain in the most age-appropriate way possible, but it's tough.
I want to protect him. To do that he needs to be armed with the knowledge that he should only trust a select few loving adults.
I hate it that to give him that knowledge, I'm also giving him cause to worry, and imagine all the bad things that bad people might want to do. I know my baby - and I know his imagination is pretty much going at full speed all the time.
I wish he could stay innocent to these scary things for just a little longer.
Lubbock readers: We received word from Ryan's school yesterday that an older Hispanic male in a 4 door green sedan has been seen near neighborhood schools/parks attempting to lure children into his car with toys and candy.
I have so much to say! Unfortunately, I have no time. Check out this web site you may already know about it, but it is a great site tons of info.
I know its tough, but you are doing the right thing educating you child.
Okay, what's really sad is that when I read this, I felt this sense of relief because we really DON'T have to worry so much about that here, Starr. I'm not being an America-basher, but that stuff just doesn't happen in Japan. (When abductions do happen here, which is rarely anyways, 99% of them are parent-abductions.) When we go to the mall, it's okay to let them out of our site for a few minutes to play on the playground--I don't have to watch them like a HAWK like I do in the States. It's okay to let them go to the bathroom on their own at the food court on base. Nobody's gonna steal them or hurt them.
But then I remembered that we'll be in America for two months this summer, and I'm going to HAVE to deal with this. I've never had this kind of talk with my kids, and I'm not really looking forward to it. Yikes.