Monday, December 01, 2008

Shield Children From Our Fears

From TODAY, Voices

Thursday November 27, 2008

 

By Dr James Dobson

 

It never has been easy to raise children, but the environment in which they’re growing up today has become much more dangerous.

 

Yesterday’s families didn’t have to worry about drugs, sexual molesters and kidnappers. When I was a child in the 1950s, my folks were more concerned about a disease called “polio”. As a 10-year-old, I moved freely around my hometown. If I was half-and-hour late coming home to dinner, the Dobson household was not seized by panic.

 

But how things have changed. Now, we worry about our children playing in the void deck. What concerns me is how we’re forced to tell our children about it. What does it do to the emotional apparatus of children to be warned about unspeakably horrible monsters that lurk in their neighbourhoods, waiting to kill or molest them or drag them away from their parents forever? It’ll be years before we know the answer to that question, but common sense tells us that the effects can be catastrophic.

 

My advice to parents is to say only what is necessary to teach a child basic safety precautions and then increase the surveillance and protection provided beyond his or her perception. We must shield them not only from the dangers in their world, but also from the fears that haunt us.

 

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