As hard as it is to say, there's really no way to make sure that your child will never be targeted by a predator. It could be a trusted friend or neighbor. It could be an aunt or uncle. It could be a beloved grandparent. Every predator has friends and relatives - they aren't just the loners who live high up on the hill. And everyone knows someone whose life has been forever changed by a predator.
But how can we prevent this from happening, and what can we do if it does happen? Right now, one in every four girls will be targeted, and one in every six boys. Those are staggering statistics. We can't lock our children away from the world, follow them everywhere they go, run background checks on all their friends ... as much as we would like to. They need to live some kind of normal life, but unfortunately, that normal life will have to include safety precautions and discussions that parents might be reluctant to have.
Some Secrets Hurt by Linda Garner is a book that will help you know what to say to your child. Written sensitively, it will tell your child what to watch out for, and what to do if they see it.