Parenting is hard. I think most of my fears in life boil down to something happening to my kids. Whether it's me getting cancer and dying while leaving my kids mom-less or my kids getting cancer and having to watch them suffer through it. I worry about their hearts and souls so much. I know worrying is wrong, and honestly I am a lot better, but every once in a while that fear creeps back in big time.
A few weeks ago I wrote about learning about someone in ministry making some very bad choices and hurting lots and lots of families and children along the way. His sin is gross and disgusting and makes my stomach turn with fear. We have had numerous talks with our boys about what is not okay and is okay with their private parts. Are those conversations uncomfortable? Yes. Is it weird to talk to your boys about people touching them? Yes. Do I feel as though I'm hurting their innocence by trying to prepare them? Yes. But I refuse to sit back and let sin creep into my families life without me putting up a fight first. I'm determined to prepare my boys (and Story when she's a bit older) for the worst. Do I hate that we as parents even have to think about this? YES. YES. YES
As far as I know molestation has never affected anyone in my family, and I pray it stays that way. I pray somehow my children can be guarded from this ever affecting them. I will do my best to instill in them what is okay and not okay. We don't keep secrets from mommy and daddy. One time someone was telling my kids something and said in front of me that it was a secret and they couldn't tell me. I kindly said that we don't have secrets from mommy and daddy. I never want my kids to think that they can have secrets from us, because they have the ability to tell us everything and it will be okay.
When thinking through ways to guard our kids a few years ago, Aaron and I talked about possibly making a commitment to not leave our kids alone with a man to babysit them. At first we thought this was a little strange and weird, because I'm about 110% that anyone we would leave them with would never ever harm them, but the more we thought about it we just felt like this rule would help us if we ever had to make a hard choice with someone we didn't know very well offering to help us out with the kids. We thought about when our kids were older and the opportunity might arise to go somewhere alone with a coach or someone else and the thought of already having that rule in place was reassuring to us. We just want to guard against any form of sinful behavior manifesting itself in our home with someone.
So, we talk to our kids, we don't keep secrets, we pray diligently for them, and we don't have boy babysitters. What else could we be doing? Send me your thoughts and ideas. What do you do with your kids to help prepare them for this and guard their hearts, bodies and minds from this.