Here are some safety tips for parents and caregivers from Darkness to Light
Talk openly with children.
- Talking about boundaries and sex forges a protective bond between parent and child, and instills knowledge that makes children and teens less vulnerable. Other adults in the child’s life can find ways to teach sexual and body safety as well.
- Talk with children when they are young, and use proper names for body parts.
- Tell children what sexual abuse is, and when age appropriate, about sex.
- Tell children what parts of the body others should not touch.
- Use examples with situations and people in their lives.
- Teach children that they have the right to tell any person “NO” to unwanted or uncomfortable touch.
- Tell children it is not OK for adults or older youth to use sexual words with them, or to act in a sexual way.
- Explain that secrets can be harmful, and if someone asks them to keep a secret, they should tell you about it.
- Teach children not to give out email or home addresses, phone numbers or other personal information while using the Internet or handheld devices.
- Ask children about their online experiences and learn about the sites and services they use.
- Explore with children who their trusted adults are in the settings they frequent.
- Speak and listen quietly and calmly. It’s important that children feel safe and loved in all of these discussions.
Things you can say to kids to help them stay safe!
- “No one should touch you where a bathing suit covers.”
- “Your whole body is private when you want it to be. You get to decide who touches you.”
- “Sometimes touch might just feel uncomfortable, even if you like the person. Whenever it’s uncomfortable, you can say no.”