Listen And Be Proactive One reason that children get sucked into the world of trafficking is because they are looking for approval and support that they may not be getting at home. Childhood and adolescence can be a very trying time where children and teens struggle with peer pressure, bullying, and other types of social pressures and make questionable choices so that they can fit in. By creating an environment where your child can talk to you and ask questions without getting reprimanded, you are decreasing the possibility of vulnerability that may come with these situations.
Know What Your Child is Doing Review every text your child gets and sends by having them routed to your phone. Approve and understand every app that your child downloads and uses, and know every password to their phone and social media accounts. Don't forget about video games with online chat rooms. Predators have been increasingly targeting children via videos games such as Fortnite. By keeping tabs on everything that your child is doing on their phone, computer and video game console by utilizing monitoring and parental control apps, you are minimizing the possibility that they could be getting targeted by predators. Understand that when it comes to your child, safety comes before privacy. Monitoring and parental control apps are not optional.
Know It's OK To Say No Teach your child that it is okay to say no and that there is no situation that is bad enough where they cannot reach out to you for help. Start by leading by example and understand that it’s okay for you as a parent to say no to certain things, then you will be able to have conversations with your children to help them understand that they have the autonomy to make positive choices and that you are there to back them up. Set up a contact plan where your children can reach out to you to get out of negative situations without fearing repercussions.
Teach Your Child About Relationships Supplement the education that your child is receiving in school by providing appropriate and informative content. Have discussions where they can ask you questions and get their answers from a safe source. Understand that having an open dialogue with your child is crucial in circumventing them from finding their answers in places that may not be safe. By learning from you, they are learning about what meaningful relationships look like. Educate them on the difference between someone who is only interested in them for their body versus someone who is genuine and good.
Get Counseling If Needed If your child’s behavior is becoming disruptive, consider seeking help from a professional. Aggression, depression, and other concerning behaviors can be red flags that something might be going on in your child’s life that needs to be addressed. Additionally, dealing with those behaviors in a constructive way before they get worse can be a positive tool to avoid driving your child away and into seeking comfort from a stranger.
Text to Donate: Text V4CR1 to 44321
Mail Donations to: Veterans For Child Rescue, Inc. 7320 N La Cholla Blvd., Suite 154-302 Tucson, AZ 85741