We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post, which is at no additional cost to you. :)
Last Updated 2017
You’ve probably heard about the young woman from California who turned up after being kidnapped 18 years ago!!! Such a sad story in the first place, yet with a bittersweet, happy ending which so rarely happens. Hopefully our friends and families will never experience anything like this, but it is good to use it as a learning tool.
As grandparents, we need to first discuss with our adult kids how they are teaching our grandkids about strangers safety, etc. Then, within the context and boundaries they set up, we can “come alongside them” to back them up.
I’ve always been proactive at teaching my kids and my grandkids about stranger safety, appropriate touching, etc. Disney had a great non-threatening VHS video, Too Smart for Strangers with Winnie The Pooh, that can still be found used at Amazon and in some used stores. We used that in our homeschooling programs way back when. 🙂 Care Bears also had a good one. There’s a couple of others on DVDs that look interesting, though I would preview any and all, as some are more appropriate for older kids, while others do best with younger ones.
Here are some good reminders from an email newsletter from Make-A-Note, which I’ve enjoyed over the past few years:
They pointed out that, kids “should also know that no matter what was done or not done, that it wasn’t the victims’ fault. Tell your kids to use ANY phone to call 911. Tell them to go up to anyone, but especially someone in a public place and tell the person they’ve been kidnapped and to call 911. Tell them that sometimes the criminals that might hurt kids will try to pretend they are friends, but they are not. Tell them criminals will lie to them and not to trust them. And most of all, tell them that no matter what any criminal might tell them, that you love them, you always will love them no matter what bad things happen, and that you will never stop searching for them.”
I think that last statement is important information for our kids and grandkids to hear from all of us at all times. Not just in connection with stranger safety, but for life in general.
Make-A-Note also listed an excellent site with several good resources for families. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children is celebrating 25 years of working to help these young victims! There you will find many useful pamphlets, videos, and more. It’s definitely worth bookmarking!
And, of course, the most important weapon we have is God! Daily, constant prayer for our families and our friends, for all needs, including safety, is a powerful and wonderful privilege we as grandparents can joyfully take part in. While we’re praying for them, let’s also pray for this young woman and her family, and other victims – both the found ones and those who are still lost.
With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints!