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Protecting the Gift - Ch 1 & 2 discussion - Page 2

post #21 of 43
Thread Starter 
Did this bother anyone else? Not much.

Should we exclude men from being babysitters because of this stereotype? Generally speaking, being female is a requirement for the babysitters that we hire.

Are they automatically more suspect than women if someone is being sexually abused? Since they're far more likely to be the opnes doing it, I would say yes.

And if so is this appropriate considering our goals of wanting dads to be more involved with their children? That's a hard question to answer. For myself, I can say that I feel like I know my dh well enough to trust him implicitly with our children. I can't think of any other men that I know that well.
post #22 of 43
Thread Starter 
Here's the thread for ch. 3:

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...4#post12954354
post #23 of 43
Hey all. I just realized that this is better fitting in the Media/Books forum. So I'm going to move it over there.
post #24 of 43
Just found this thread via Phathi5's sig! So thanks! I just finished reading this book, and it was life changing.

I loved, loved how he talks about mothers instincts and that is a innate survival mechanism for our species. It has really helped me feel more "normal" for being so paranoid about the safety of my children and always being highly aware of potentially dangerous situations or people. I'm *supposed* to be like that, I'm not crazy!! So I've started honoring that part of my personality and being proud of my motherly instincts instead of being annoyed at myself for always being worried.

It also took me through a lot emotionally; in reading the book I re-lived several situations in which I regrettably did NOT listen when my instincts were screaming "danger!!" , and I put my kids in the care of some individuals who were definitely sketchy. I am so scared to think of what could have happened to my precious children, and it's hard to forgive myself. Never again!!
post #25 of 43
Thread Starter 
Can this be moved to the Book Club forum with the other thread?
post #26 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowMom View Post
I read this book a few years ago and re-read Chapters 1 and 2 for this discussion.

There is one thing that bothers me upon re-reading which I would like to bring up, and that is his focus on men as perpetrators of violence.

I think that with the way the book portrays things, you would get the impression that women hardly ever commit acts of violence, it's men.

I am not sure that I totally buy that. Women may commit violent acts less often, but there's a story in the news pretty much every day about a female doing something violent - killing a child, killing a spouse, etc. Part of this is probably overreporting because it's not as usual (possibly).

However, overall I have to say that I was a bit bothered by this tone of the book. While I do agree that obviously women seem to be targets more often than men, does that justify the harmful generalizations?

Did this bother anyone else? If not, where does it stop? Should we exclude men from being babysitters because of this stereotype? Are they automatically more suspect than women if someone is being sexually abused? And if so is this appropriate considering our goals of wanting dads to be more involved with their children?

Would like to hear some other thoughts on this.
I think one of the important points in the first chapter is that we do trust people all the time with our kids and that it's about intuition. I don't worry about my kid when leaving her with her father (beyond that she'll miss me). I don't do it to be PC in spite of some concerns that I'm minimizing. But I knew my partner for years before we had a child. There's already a lot of trust in that relationship. BUT I wouldn't hire a man for a babysitter (though I'd consider hiring a couple). I don't feel comfortable leaving my child with a man alone. However, provided that I was completely confident that nursery/preschool/daycare was set up so that my child would never be with a male caregiver alone, I wouldn't mind (and might actually like) having a male on staff.
post #27 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowMom View Post
There is one thing that bothers me upon re-reading which I would like to bring up, and that is his focus on men as perpetrators of violence.

I think that with the way the book portrays things, you would get the impression that women hardly ever commit acts of violence, it's men.

When you look at his point of what is most likely to be a danger to your children, I think he is being very accurate. He has made his living by being outstanding in predicting risk. I wouldn't want him to water down his book to be PC. He is writing about where the most likely risk to our children is likely to be.

Additionally, the way he became so very good at assessing risk, is that he and his sister were frequently abused by their drug addicted mom.


However, overall I have to say that I was a bit bothered by this tone of the book. While I do agree that obviously women seem to be targets more often than men, does that justify the harmful generalizations?

Yes, given the topic and point of his book, and he isn't going by generalizations, he's going by statistics.

Did this bother anyone else? That it is true, yes, that he wrote the truth, no.
If not, where does it stop?
It stops where the defineable risk ends
Should we exclude men from being babysitters because of this stereotype? I will

Are they automatically more suspect than women if someone is being sexually abused? Statistically yes, it is more likely.
And if so is this appropriate considering our goals of wanting dads to be more involved with their children?
Not sure how this is exactly pertinent. A father has a vested interest in his children. Not that that is a be all end all, but I think it is a reason to encourage fathers to be all that they are able to contribute to the raising of their offspring. But that doesn't mean I want someone else's dad keeping my kids.
Sorry for being rather short with answers, but limited time.
post #28 of 43
Moving you all to Book Clubs
post #29 of 43
Thread Starter 
Thanks, AM.
post #30 of 43
Thread Starter 
post #31 of 43
Hi, I hope it is okay to ask this here... I have not read this book yet but have heard a lot of recommendations for it. I am hesitant to read it. I feel that I am pretty aware of the dangers that my children face and of how to protect them. I am maybe a bit on the overprotective side though I don't think too extreme. Will this book scare me and make me worse? I worry so much already about all the bad stuff out there. I have such an overactive imagination that goes in its own direction - I don't want to have anything more to feed it with...
post #32 of 43
I actually think it might relad you a bit!

It helped me realize that some of the things I'm paranoid about are really uncommon and it helped me be more aware of signs so I don't have to just be worried all the time.
post #33 of 43
I just ordered this book yesterday. I wish I would have ordered it before, but I think my own past left me hesitant to do so. I can't explain why though.
post #34 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amberoxy View Post
Hi, I hope it is okay to ask this here... I have not read this book yet but have heard a lot of recommendations for it. I am hesitant to read it. I feel that I am pretty aware of the dangers that my children face and of how to protect them. I am maybe a bit on the overprotective side though I don't think too extreme. Will this book scare me and make me worse? I worry so much already about all the bad stuff out there. I have such an overactive imagination that goes in its own direction - I don't want to have anything more to feed it with...
No,I don't *think* it will scare you. It helps evaluate what fears are valid and what are unlikely and how to teach your kids useful things instead of just being afraid.
HTH!
post #35 of 43
Thanks for all the feedback! I have gone ahead and ordered the book. Hopefully I will be able to read it in time to participate in this discussion.
post #36 of 43

score one for the Gift

My dd has been carpooling to an activity with a dear friend of mine, someone I've known and trusted for years, whose ds's are in the same activity.

Something was off with my friend recently, and I couldn't understand it or quite put my finger on it. I could have ignored or rationalized the signals I was getting, but thinking of my responsibilities as a parent in light of this book discussion, I didn't. I changed the carpool arrangement, despite some awkwardness, and got my dd out of traveling with my friend two weeks ago.

My friend had a car accident this week (first in her life, no one hurt, thank God). She told me she's been on some new meds for an ongoing physical health issue that she now realizes were interfering with her thinking and her ability to drive. She's getting help for that.

Potential catastrophe averted. My kid stayed safe. I protected her from danger :
post #37 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post
My dd has been carpooling to an activity with a dear friend of mine, someone I've known and trusted for years, whose ds's are in the same activity.

Something was off with my friend recently, and I couldn't understand it or quite put my finger on it. I could have ignored or rationalized the signals I was getting, but thinking of my responsibilities as a parent in light of this book discussion, I didn't. I changed the carpool arrangement, despite some awkwardness, and got my dd out of traveling with my friend two weeks ago.

My friend had a car accident this week (first in her life, no one hurt, thank God). She told me she's been on some new meds for an ongoing physical health issue that she now realizes were interfering with her thinking and her ability to drive. She's getting help for that.

Potential catastrophe averted. My kid stayed safe. I protected her from danger :
: That is AWESOME!! My mom got the book back. Unfortunately, people at work only either glanced at it or didn't bother to read it at all because they were too busy..so unfortunate...no wonder we all have such trouble learning to trust our instincts. So I am going to reread chapters 1 and 2 and then come back to answer the questions.
post #38 of 43
Ok..I reread the first two chapters...

Ch.1
Holly initially felt uncomfortable walking to her car. Why do you think she declined the ride from another mom?

She felt embarassed and that she would be making a big deal out of nothing. She ignored her fear signals by telling herself she was being silly.

DeBecker says that fear took over when Holly and the man got to her car. How did fear help her in this situation?

At that point there was no more reason for excuse making. The man was there and her worst fear had come true, that he wanted to hurt her, and worse, her daughter so her fear helped her fight with all she had to protect her child. Her wild brain took over because she was doing things without even realizing it like honking her horn and gouging his eyes.

On page 16, he offers some startling facts about sexual abuse(when talking about denial). Are these a surprise to you? Do they change anything you had thought about sexual abuse and children?

No, because I knew that sexual abuse happens more often with people kids know then with strangers, however, the strong denial of obvious signals was surprising.

Ch. 2

What are ways that intuition communicates with us? Can you share an example of a time your intuition told you something about protecting your children?

When my soon-to-be-ex husband threatened to kill his child and my mother and me I took it seriously. His family acted as if it were all talk and I should let it go but he had been acting weird before that and I wasn't taking the chance so I got a pfa. Also, about a year ago I was considering taking him back as he hadn't done or said anything violent in 5 years. We agreed he would move back in soon but half the night I couldn't sleep even though nothing scary had happened...I just had a nagging feeling that I couldn't ignore. I told him I wasn't ready yet and we at least need to see a therapist first. His rage over my decision proved my intuition was correct.

On p.29, Jane asks "Your sitter is a good driver, right?" Do you think that anyone would have said, "No, she isn't?" What do you think of the ways she used denial to soothe her feelings about the babysitter's driving?

I think she knew her friend was going to say yes she is because otherwise she wouldn't be letting her drive her kids around, she was denying by asking her friend...she also probably didn't want to offend her friend by questioning her judgment of the sitter so she told herself many excuses, even that she herself speeds at times.

At the bottom of p.39, he asks a very interesting question: which is sillier: waiting a moment for the next elevator, or placing her child and herself into a soundproof steel chamber with someone she is afraid of? Are you able to look at situations like he does?

I am trying to be better at this. I am naturally a shy person who also tries very hard to be polite..so I have to trust my intuition more. My daughter is also extremely polite so I am trying to teach her to honor her intuition at a young age and I am very pleased when she asks about funny feelings and all that.

How do we deal with wanting to be polite to people, while honoring our intuition when we feel uncomfortable?

Oops, I was starting to say that with the last question..sorry...well, I think, as I said, it is hard because I feel so many people are rude and I don't want to live my life distrusting people and teaching my daughter to be like that. I guess it is a matter of your gut...we have to learn to trust it..God gave us these instincts for a reason..and I know later in the book he gives specific things someone will do so I would go by that..like if a man wont accept my firm no then too bad, I am protecting my child.

Off to re-read chapter 3...
post #39 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Will this book scare me and make me worse?
It's made me worry less, actually.
post #40 of 43
My son got lost in a public place this week, and I feel like the book really helped me feel so much better about it. I wasn't panicked, although of course I was worried and am still thinking about what could have happened. (actually he was with someone else when he got lost, and I only found out about it after the fact!!) He wandered away from his group accidentally, and some security guards found him and the adult he was with immediately reported it and called security and eventually they got back together. He wasn't fazed by it one bit.

I found that I wasn't that scared to death after reading PTG, because the likelihood of a pedophile just *happening* to be in the random location he wandered into, with a plan to kidnap, was just so remote. Just reading about how incredibly unlikely it is for your child to be kidnapped by a stranger, and about how molestors operate, was actually comforting to me.
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