The news of paedophile Richard Huckle has recently rocked Malaysia. But in all honesty, it is not the only case going on. There are tonnes of predators of children, whether sexual abusers or kidnappers or even torturers and murderers.
Before I became a parent, stories like this sickened me. But now that I am a mother, it more than disgusts me. It grips me to the core and reminds me that I have to do all I can to protect my child. I came across this video of a social experiment a few years ago, and it left a strong imprint on me – on how easy it is for someone to get hold of a child.
I have also heard of horror stories from friends, one being a friend’s friend who held a full moon party for her baby at a restaurant, and as usual, the baby was being passed around to be carried by guests. Should be safe right? I mean, all those who were there were friends and family. But at the end of the party, the baby was no where to be found. The baby was gone.
Sometimes stories like this make me feel so paranoid. On one hand, I really do not want to be a paranoid mom. I want to be relaxed and chill and give my child(ren) space. Yet at the same time, I can’t help but feel that the world is becoming such a scary place, and that it is better to be safe than sorry.
But I can’t be there for Amy forever. When she’s older, I need to equip her with the ability to protect and fend for herself from people like Richard Huckle. How do I do it?
This is another video, recently produced by The Star’s R.AGE journalists. It sent chills through me! In this world of social media, our girls are even more vulnerable to predators. We cannot change the fact that our kids will grow under the influence of social media.
I do not believe that taking away or restricting their freedom is the answer, because, admit it, you and I were kids once, and we know all too well how to go behind our parents’ backs if we wanted to. Plus, the rebellious streak in us would probably push us to do even more foolish things.
I pray that I will be able to build such a strong relationship with my kid(s), that I would be able to teach them and equip them well to face the world. At the same time, I pray that I will also be able to raise my child(ren) to respect others and treat people with dignity and love.