The List: Countering Tragedy with Information

7 years ago
This article was written by a member of the SheKnows Community. It has not been edited, vetted or reviewed by our editorial staff, and any opinions expressed herein are the writer’s own.
Making cakeletsBirthday Wishes

For our family, this week was a week of celebrating Darling 1's 5th Birthday; having fun with family in Texas and cross-country driving. We laughed and played and ate and soaked up the hot, dry heat. Even though the last leg of our trip home was a difficult one with all of us worn and wearied from our road trip adventures, we did not suffer any tragedies; we endured and we made it home safely.

Sadness Abounds

And yet, this week there were a number of headlines that deeply saddened me. Young lives were lost and put at risk due to misjudgment, ignorance or pure accident. Despite every precaution, thoughtful planning and protective measure taken, tragedies still do occur, but parents should continue do their best to educate themselves and their children about safety issues in order to reduce the risk associated with merely living life and growing up.

I have written past posts about the issues surrounding each of these tragedies. Please take a moment to refresh your memory and remind your kiddos of these safety measures regarding guns, becoming separated from a parent and leaving children unattended vehicles.

A Hot Topic

It's been exceedingly hot in numerous areas of the country lately. While you should never leave a child unattended in a vehicle for both health and safety reasons regardless of what the weather conditions are, it is particularly vital to be completely mindful of whether your child is in the vehicle during these scorching hot days. It takes only a matter of minutes for hot metal car out in the sun to become a hot metal oven.

In St. Louis, MO, this week a mother and two companions left a 5 month-old infant and 21 month-old twins in a hot car with one window partially down on a day when there was a high heat advisory issued. The trio left the kids in the car to go into a restaurant and place a t0 go order. All three sat and waited for their order, drinking soft drinks and eating an appetizer. Fortunately, witnesses quickly called authorities and these three screaming, dehydrated, sweat drenched kids were rescued.

Clearly, these people knew what they were doing, but didn't care or realize the consequences. Most often it's purely a slip of the mind that causes this kind of catastrophe.

Not Even for a Minute: Children Left Unattended in Vehicles

There but for the Grace of God, Go I: Tips and Websites for Keeping Your Child Safe In and Around Vehicles

Guns Kill

Guns in homes scare me; particularly when there are youngsters in a home. Whether it's your own home, your parents' home or a friend's home, if there are any guns in the home make sure they are all secured. By secure I mean unloaded and locked away in a case that cannot be accessed by little hands.

Also in St. Louis, Lilianna Moore, 3 year-old little girl, found a loaded gun between two mattresses in her home and accidentally shot and killed herself this week. Strangely enough, on the very same day, two other kids were also injured in separate instances, also in St. Louis. These shooting appear to be related to gang activity.

In my opinion, it's not worth the risk to have a gun in your home. I realize that some people don't have a choice, as in the case of law enforcement personnel, etc., but there are ways to ensure that accidental shootings do not happen in your home or anywhere your children are visiting or playing.

The Right to Bear Arms in Your Home: McDonald v. City of Chicago

The Cautious Approach to Life: Tips for Teaching Your Kids Gun Safety

A Parent's Greatest Fear

At what age a child is old enough to be on his or her own walking to a park, a community pool, a friend's house, or in the case of Leibby Kletzky, to meet his mother after leaving a day camp is a decision that each parent and child must determine for themselves, but it's certainly a question on the minds of many parents this week.

Little Leibby's story is almost unspeakable. I read one article that said the fact that we are all shocked about it is a good thing because that means it isn't something that happens often. In my opinion, if even one child is walking down a street, asks a stranger for help with directions and is then stolen away and murdered, as was the case with Leibby, then it is happening too often...period.

Regardless of whether your child becomes separated from you in a public place or doesn't arrive home at the designated time after school or from visiting a friend, etc., you and your child should know what to do in the case of being lost or separated. This is something to be practiced and talked about in a matter-of-fact manner often. This way, if you ever become separated, neither of you will overly panic {at least that is the hope} because you will both know what to do in such a circumstance; and you will know what your child will do, as well.

Holding on Tight: What to Do if Separated from Your Child

The Scoop

My heart breaks each time I hear such horribly sad stories as these. My prayers go out to each family involved in these tragedies. Let information be your sword and shield, and do your best to protect your family through informing and educating them. Over and out...


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