Originally Posted by yellowpansy
These are very valid fears of which you write but statistically they are also very rare occurrences. I feel it is also very important for children to play outside and that cannot always be attended 100%. And, children need to do things on their own, without us near them 100%. We cannot succomb to the fears around us and limit our children's life experiences to the point where they don't get much outdoor time. To me, that would be a real tragedy.
As parents, it does behoove us to monitor our children and safeguard them. But, we cannot protect our children from every possibility. We have to make choices. There has to be balance; we have to balance our fears with the freedom to let our children grow.
We are all entitled to our own opinions and parenting styles of course... but I fail to see how "1 in 3" is as you put it, statistically a rare occurrence.
I agree that it is very important that children play outside and that they do things on their own. I do not limit my dd's life experiences so she doesn't get much outdoor time. At not quite 2 she recognizes the call of a chickadee, has pointed out a bald eagle to us, finds buds on branches etc. And sometimes she just wanders and plays. We have succeeded in doing this despite the fact that we live in an apt bldg with no outdoor space to play. Like I said in my original post, you can monitor - from a distance or even from inside if you have a home - so that the child still feels like they are on their own.
And I don't see how when we soon have a house, my letting her play outside while I peer thru the window, sitting by it, or sit in the other corner of the yard reading, is not letting her have her space or is teaching her fear. I think it's just a good precaution.
Also telling kids names for their body parts etc is a good thing - but not a preventative measure. That just helps so that maybe if something happens, then maybe they will know how to tell you. But when the perpetrator tells them it is their fault and don't tell your mommy or daddy even if they told you it's ok because you were bad and thats' why this happened or if you tell mommy and daddy then I will hurt them too -ad infinitum - most very young children will live in fear and believe that. And those *are* the kinds of things said to children who are molested.
One in 3 *is* a high statistic - and it spans urban, rural, poor, middle class and wealthy. I will do all I can to protect my dd, not in a paranoid way and telling her that every person might hurt her etc, but I will keep her in my sight until she is much older and able to follow simple instructions such as "come get mommy if someone comes in the yard". That kind of simple instruction does not bring fear with it -and I will prob say something like "I'ts important that mommy knows right away when we have guests so that I can greet them myself and make them feel welcome" or something.
Just my opinion...