As a parent, it’s easy to start worrying about all the world’s dangers. You have your kids, and suddenly there they are, miniature human beings for whom you are responsible. You want to keep all the ugliness and threats away from them.
Every parent probably has some existential fears concerning their kids, but you can never protect them from those. It would be best if you spent your time focusing on the real dangers that exist that might threaten your child daily. You can be mindful without crossing the line into over-protectiveness.
6 Dangers from Which Parents Can Protect Their Children
Let’s review some of the common dangers and issues your children might face and how you can steer your youngsters away or talk to them about them.
Household Cleaning Products
You probably have household cleaning products somewhere in your home, and you don’t think twice about them till you have kids. At that point, you need to consider where you’re keeping them.
For instance, maybe you have bleach or Lysol. You might have a toilet or sink de-clogger. Many of them have bright colors that a toddler would find appealing. They may look as good as fruit punch to a thirsty kid.
If your child consumes a dangerous chemical, then you usually have up to two years to pursue a product liability lawsuit, but it’s doubtful that you’ll get anywhere with one if your child gets sick or dies. The manufacturer will argue that you didn’t do enough to keep the chemicals away from the child, and they would be right.
If you’ve got a spouse or partner, talk to them about a new place to keep the cleaning solutions. You might also get a lock for your cabinets if they’re at ground level.
Many people own guns. Some have them for protection, while others like to use them for hunting. Some like taking them to a target range and firing off a few rounds when they’re in the mood.
Gun ownership is fine, provided that you keep them away from your youngsters. It would be best if you keep your firearms in a locking safe or closet, somewhere where your child cannot access them. Keep the keys somewhere safe.
You might consider keeping your ammunition in a different place from where you keep the guns. That way, even if somehow your child gets access, they will not have both the guns and ammo at the same time.
Traffic is perhaps one of the greatest child dangers. Maybe you live on a busy thoroughfare, and there are constantly cars zooming past. You might live on a quiet side street, and traffic does not worry you as much.
Either way, you ought to make sure that you have a fence around your front yard if the children play there. If they play in the backyard, where there’s no traffic, you’ll probably feel better about that.
You can also speak to your kids about traffic. Teach them that they are to never cross the street before looking both ways.
You can teach them about crosswalks as well. You might institute a hand-holding rule, where they cannot cross the street unless you or another adult holds their hand.
You probably don’t ever want to consider child abductions. It’s not a pleasant thought that there are people out there who would welcome the chance to snatch a child and abscond with them.
When you go to a store with your child, remember to keep them in your sight at all times. You should also do that if you go to a busy playground.
You might think that nothing bad can ever happen to your child, but if you watch enough “Law and Order: SVU” episodes, you’d realize that someone can snatch your young one in a second and disappear with them. These things sometimes happen, and while they’re rare, you need to guard against them.
In the 80s, the Dare program was started to help children learn to say no to drugs. In schools, the teachers showed the kids videos about drug dealers lurking on playgrounds, just waiting to offer them a joint or something worse.
That probably doesn’t happen too often, but drugs are out there, and you should talk to your kids about them. You likely do not have to worry about anyone offering your toddler drugs, but when they start to get a little older, you should choose a time to speak to them about substances.
Keep an eye on their friends as well. You can’t necessarily spot a drug user immediately, but if you spend a little time with your child’s buddies, you can probably get an impression of whether or not they’re using anything or are likely to do so.
When your kids are older, you should have a sex talk with them too. Some parents don’t want to do it, and they think a religious figure or a teacher should do it instead.
If you do that, though, you don’t know if you’ll agree with what these other adults say. They might preach an abstinence-only methodology.
Abstinence is acceptable, but you should also realize that you can’t substitute it for an earnest talk about condoms, STDs, and pregnancy. You should be honest about your expectations regarding your child, and you should try not to either glamorize sex or stigmatize it. Keep in mind that it’s natural but that plenty of consequences can come from it.
Dangers from Which Parents Can Protect Their Kids
If you keep each of these potential dangers in mind as your child grows, then you’ll know that you’re doing your job as a parent. You can recall how your parents handled these various topics and situations.
If they did well, then you can follow in their footsteps. If you are an adult, you wish that they had handled certain situations differently and tried to do better with your kids. You don’t have to perpetuate a cycle with which you disagree.