Consider how to protect your children when one-on-one activities occur when you are not home or outside the home.
When two people are going out alone together:
- Ask them what their plans are before they leave – how does the adult or older child act? Do they provide specifics? Notice the adult or other child’s ability to be upfront and comfortable with you.
- If a child is going to a friend’s house to play, find out who is going to be home. Make sure you’ve met the parents, know who the siblings are and their ages.
- When they come back – notice the behavior of the child. Are they happy and talking about their trip? Ask them specifically what they did.
- Notice their demeanor. If something seems off – pursue it. Don’t just shrug it off that the child is being moody or wants to be left alone.
- Investigate. More often than not a child is too scared, confused, and ashamed to tell someone that they’ve been abused. Furthermore, most abused children will say “no” the first time they’re asked if they’ve been abused.
- Do right by the child and make sure that you feel 100% comfortable that everything is alright. If you suspect something inappropriate or abusive occurred, tell them it’s the right thing to tell you if something bad happened and that you won’t be mad. You’re here to protect them.
Sections on this page have been adapted from TheMamaBearEffect.