Keep Your Kids Protected- Experts Provide Five Recommendations For Safe Sleepovers

( – As children grow up and make friends, they like to spend time hanging out with them. Sometimes, they decide to ask their parents if they can have a sleepover. What was once a great way to foster a deeper bond between one or more children has now turned into something that experts are cautioning people about.

Not All Sleepovers Are Safe

The sad reality is that while you want to trust other children’s parents, not everyone is worth that faith. That was on display last August when Michael Meyden was arrested in Oregon for drugging his 12-year-old daughter’s friends who were spending the night for a sleepover. One of the kids was suspicious, didn’t drink the smoothie he gave her, and was able to alert her mom to come pick her up. He was later indicted on nine charges and there are countless other tales just like this.

Protecting Your Children

That’s not to say you shouldn’t ever let your child attend a sleepover. However, if you do, there are a few critical steps you can and should take.

First, make sure you know the parents of the child hosting the sleepover and that you have their contact information. Having a relationship can help foster a sense of security and trust, so always trust your instincts. If something feels off, don’t let your child stay over.

Teach your children about boundaries, and have them define what’s acceptable and what’s not when it comes to touching or even speech. In the same vein, make your own boundaries known with the other kid’s parents. Describe what they are and aren’t allowed to watch and whether or not they can use the internet while at home.

Make sure your child knows they can text or call you at any time. If you want to be more discreet, have a safe code word that wouldn’t stand out, such as a food item, and can easily be woven into regular conversation to avoid rousing suspicion. Also, make sure they are aware of things that can happen and what types of behaviors to look out for. Educating your children means equipping them, and there’s no more important time for them to know this than when they’re away from home.

Get all of the details about the sleepover. Who will be home? Who will be at the sleepover or even just hanging out at the house while your child is there? It’s not unreasonable to ask these questions. Your child’s safety literally depends on it.

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