Dd aged 7 has been invited to spend a day at the beach and a funfair with a friend and two or three other children.
I'm not entirely comfortable with this - but dd is super keen to go.
Yesterday I raised the subject of keeping safe: not wandering off, who to approach if she gets separated from her friends, and then what to do if someone approaches her (scream and kick). I feel I have to raise these points.
Dd burst into tears and said she was now afraid of going.
I've really blown it. I wanted to give her information and now I've traumatised her. Help! What should I say now?
I was terrified of strangers when I was little- the Stranger Danger message was drummed into us and we even had a picture book about it! But it hasn't scarred me for life, and I still went places and had fun.
The thing is, what you're warning her of is a scary thing- there are no grey areas really, she needs to know how important it is to be on her guard. If that means she is upset for a little while in the mean time as the message sinks in, I don't think that's a bad thing. Much better that she get upset now and know the dangers than be blissfully ignorant.
Thanks for support. In this case I don't think ignorance is bliss. Nonetheless I still feel bad telling her if she gets lost to ask a lady with children for help, not a man by himself. Feels like I'm tarring half the human race with an unpleasant brush.
I always say someone in a uniform like a policeman/women, or someone who works at the place we're at (I said this when we were at Dreyton Manor a while ago, it was insanely busy and iI shows ds's the DM logo and said if they got lost to ask someone with that logo on their t shirt).
I hadn't thought of saying about someone with a pushchair, thanks purple I'll use that one
Agree with the approach a family tip as well - uniforms, shop assistants and families. Does she have an ID bracelet? We bought some from an online company a while back, little plastic wristbands you can write name/phone number on the inside. As she won't know your friend's mobile number, perhaps they could take a pen and write it on the inside of her wrist or somewhere so they can be quickly reunited if she gets lost? Just remind her to get it re-done if it starts to wash off.
I've tried over and over to have the stranger danger chat with DD. She is a really friendly confident little girl and will talk to anybody. Yesterday, I took her and two friends to a theme park. I was concerned about losing them and copied the mobile phone on arm idea from a child I saw. We never got seperated but the mum of the two other girls wanted to know why I'd drawn on their arms .