Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: orbiting the earth
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I have the same issue with my dd, who is also four. She was not a late talker, though - she was advanced verbally and has been striking up conversations with starngers for as long as I can remember.
Keep in mind that telling a child not to talk to strangers does not really help - they are not sure what a stranger is, and they actually see you talk to "strangers" all the time - on the supermarket checkout line, in the park, etc., and you may even encourage them to speak to these people as well.
I've told my daughter that she is not allowed to tell anyone her name without asking me first, and I've noticed that when we are in a playground (just about the only public place at this point that she might be out of my sight for a few minutes - I keep an eye, but I don't follow her around), she has been actually running over to me just to say, "Can i introduce myself to that boy's mommy over there?" I'm actually thinking of adding a new rule - she has to introduce ME first.
At this age, with them under almost constant supervision, there isn't too much to worry about, but it is a good idea to start planting the seeds of safety now. Oh, and speaking of playgrounds, now that dd is at an age where I DON'T follow her around, I only go to playgrounds that are fairly small, fenced in, without too many exit gates.