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Men are bad ladies are good

(133 Posts)
Joiningthegang Thu 04-Oct-12 20:16:05

My 3dc had a school assembly where they talked about what to do if you get lost.

Please bear in mind this is the translated by the kids version.

If they get lost they should find a lady - preferably who has children, then other ladies, then men, because they arcane be bad.

Aibu to be cross that my boys aged 6 and 4 are being given negative messages about being male. I am also cross that this sounds like "stranger danger" again when children are far more at risk from non-strangers.

Sooooo - aibu to send an email to the head (and suggestions of how to say it much appreciated.

Sirzy Thu 04-Oct-12 20:17:52

I have no problem with them being taught stranger danger, but the mixed messages about the sexes wouldn't sit well with me either.

Nigglenaggle Thu 04-Oct-12 20:18:23

Go and have a chat. As you say it is kid translated and it will be harder to strike the right tone with an e-mail.

PilchardsonToast Thu 04-Oct-12 20:19:46

I agree the message can be a little hard to reconcile with your own views about equality but that aside I would strongly prefer if dd found herself lost for her to find a mummy with children rather than approaching a man on his own.
Flame me I probably deserve it but that how I feel!

GoSakuramachi Thu 04-Oct-12 20:20:04

I wouldn't take their word for it exactly, but its not bad advice. Thats what I tell my children, if you are lost or in trouble, ask a woman with children. Because they are more likely to help, and statistically they are less risky.

It isn't unfair bias when it is true.

Gentleness Thu 04-Oct-12 20:21:23

I don't know either way, but am starting to talk to my 3yo more about what to do if he gets lost etc. So out of interest what alternative better advice would you give to looking for a mum with kids?

phantomnamechanger Thu 04-Oct-12 20:22:00

I agree with what the school said actually.

In the past there was too much emphasis on "strangers" and kids were led to fear all adults they did not know. There was also the danger of course of thinking conversely that all people you know are therefore safe.

we know there are exceptions (think Myra Hindley etc) but if a child needs to know in an emergency that you CAN ask a stranger for help, then a mum with kids is a "safer" option. Better do do that and ask for help than wander further off trying to find their parent or their way home!

I also wonder if the child has added themselves that you ask a lady because men can be bad - I am sure the school would not have gone that far

Nagoo Thu 04-Oct-12 20:22:04

I know what you are getting at, but I would still say that a DC should approach a woman with a family over a lone male if they are lost. I don't think that is unreasonable.

The whole point of stranger danger is to ensure that DC make the best choices, and when you have to simplify it down that far, the message does distill like that.

I know that is unfortunate but I couldn't think what different message I would want them to get.

Sirzy Thu 04-Oct-12 20:28:38

Serious question - why a woman with a family over a man with a family?

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 04-Oct-12 20:31:11

I think, anyone with kids, on the basis that they might have some vague clue what to do.

Himalaya Thu 04-Oct-12 20:32:08

Took me a while to work out the thread title - "men are bad ladies..." confused grin

This is basically the advice I would give my kids too -if you get lost ask someone nearby in uniform, or a mum with children. I wouldn't say ladies good, men bad though.

I don't think there is any need to dwell on the "men can be bad" part. 99% of the time the bad outcome of a kid getting lost is them getting upset, wandering further, taking longer to find. I don't think in this situation you need to tell them scary tales - just what they need to know: "don't panic.don't go far. Ask someone in uniform or a mum"

You could go and have a word with school to clarify - not their advice is wrong, but maybe the way they are giving it is alarmist.

honeytea Thu 04-Oct-12 20:32:58

I think maybe it would be better to say look for a mummy or daddy with children because they will know how to help children better than someone who isn't a mummy or daddy.

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Thu 04-Oct-12 20:33:02

There's no reason they couldn't have said to look for a person with children, and they could have played down the woman before man thing. I don't think they should eliminate it completely, because personally I would prefer my ds's to ask a woman, but if it was done sensitively there is no need for it to send a negative message about males. It doesn't send a negative message about the general public when we tell our children to ask a staff member/someone in uniform or a police officer, so if its done properly it doesn't have to send a negative message about men.

kim147 Thu 04-Oct-12 20:33:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Celticlassie Thu 04-Oct-12 20:33:46

I suppose a man is less likely to be the sole adult with his family. Although, I know there are still loads of men out with their kids, it's still less likely.

Sirzy Thu 04-Oct-12 20:40:18

Why does it matter which is more likely though?

Why not just tell children to find someone in uniform or a someone with children with them?

nannynick Thu 04-Oct-12 20:43:04

Person with children sounds a better way to phrase it.

As a bloke, if I am on my own I would be very hesitent about getting involved with a lost child situation - an I'm a childrens worker. Society today seems to tag men with the bad label.

bumperella Thu 04-Oct-12 20:44:37

kim147, I had an older lady smile at my baby then look stricken and apologise to me in case I thought she was "up to no good". I felt dreadful as I don't think I glowered at her and definitely didn't mean to - but lots of people clearly are scared of approaching children.

Anyhow. I agree with OP that it isn't great to be telling <paraphrase!> kids that men might be bad but ladies are always good. Also misleading!
I'd say:
a) Someone in uniform (ignoring the dodgy-security-gaurd potential!)
b) Grown-up with children
c) Grown-ups in a group of men and ladies (I just think they're less likely to run into a group of predators hanging out together than one on his/her own).

IneedAsockamnesty Thu 04-Oct-12 20:46:48

i do think mums wont fret so much about helping when dads may but in the intrests of equality i think we should send our lost children to find homeless people hanging around probation offices grin

KitCat26 Thu 04-Oct-12 20:54:44

Someone with children would be ideal.

But, when I discussed this with DD1 (3) the other day in town I simplified it to find a mummy with a buggy. She is has just started a phase of being more aware of strangers and is particularly shy round men.

kim147 Thu 04-Oct-12 20:57:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Himalaya Thu 04-Oct-12 20:59:35

Yeah, that's kind of the picture in my head too Kitcat - mummy-with-buggy or person-in-uniform both easy archetypes for a child to remember when they are panicking.

I don't think there is a need to be totally equal-opportunities about this. Just no need to plant the men-are-bad idea though. Aman who offers to help shouldn't freak them out.

Joiningthegang Thu 04-Oct-12 21:00:34

Sirzy - that's what I thought

A- someone with children
B-,I always say if in a shop go to the till, or outside someone in uniform

What irks me is that it seems almost irrelevant what the school actually said, my boys "heard" that ladies are nice and men aren't.

I just feel uncomfortable that negative stereotypes regarding men are being perpetuated in our schools - incidentally the head, doing the assembly, is male!

BruisedFanjo Thu 04-Oct-12 21:02:09

We've always told SS (DD too little to understand) that if he gets lost, to go in a shop, and ask the person at the till to ring the police as he is lost and stay right by the till until the police or daddy/me come. The reasoning for this was shops are everywhere, and usually mean CCTV, and multiple adults with access to a phone etc. If he stays right by the till with an assistant until the police come, it saves him wandering the streets until he finds someone that fits one of the descriptions of "safe".

He does also know that if its a daddy day, he can't go with anyone who's not daddy or nana, n if its a mummy dad to wait for mummy or grandad (this is due to custody arrangements although I suppose would prevent him going off with someone he sort of knew who said it was ok) .

Of course the ideal would be for everyone in the world to be kind and safe and any random person on the street should be fine but, its not like that sad

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Thu 04-Oct-12 21:03:16

Sorry...t is hard. BUt most people would tell their child to find a Mother with children,

Statistically it is safer.

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