Two weekends ago my husband and I attended a workshop called Parenting Safe Children. It has taken me many days to process everything I learned and a few more days to think about this blog. This workshop was taught by Feather Berkower, a licensed clinical social worker and a leader in child sexual abuse prevention. (I’m sure you already have an idea of what this workshop was about). It is important as the owner of Kiddie Up Nannies and a parent, to stay up to date with parenting trends and parenting philosophies. Although we are in the business of placing nannies, our priority, above all, is to keep children safe.
I heard about Parenting Safe Children from a friend of mine and also an associate who is a child physiologist. After learning more about it, I decided to attend myself prior to hosting a workshop for Kiddie Up nannies and clients. I’m going to be honest- these 4 hours on a Saturday morning were intense. Very, very intense. As the over-the-top parent I already am, my mind was filled with horrible thoughts and scary concerns. Even though it wasn’t a good feeling, it helped me emphasize more with my clients. It’s hard to leave our kids. It’s even worse when you are afraid to leave them. How are we supposed to know as parents our caregivers won’t harm our child?
First and foremost let me give my disclaimer- I am not a professional in this field. It is evident Feather has done her research and devoted her life to prevent child abuse. I am not going to pretend I have the answers so take the class! Give up a few hours and soak up all you can! I will tell you a couple highlights I took form the workshop.
#1. Be uncomfortable so your child doesn’t have to. Have the super uncomfortable conversation with your caregiver or fellow parents about body safety rules. Yes it will be awkward but important. You know when parents say, I would do anything to take away all the hurt. Now is your chance! If you do the right things as parents, the likelihood of abuse is significantly lower.
#2. Follow your gut. This is my favorite! This is what we tell all our clients. If the nanny says all the right things but you still just don’t feel comfortable- follow your instincts! This is one of the coolest things about being a parent- somewhere during those 9 months we were given this little, tiny, invisible characteristic. I don’t know about you but I didn’t have this type of intuition before my kids were born! I was so happy to hear Feather talk about this and confirm our feelings all along.
Are you intrigued yet? I hope so! I would highly suggest attending one of the workshops and perhaps even hosting it if you’re interested! This topic is extremely difficult to talk about. Even as I’m writing this, I feel at a loss for words (which NEVER happens). I can tell you I feel better after going. Like I mentioned earlier, it has taken some time to process all the information. I do feel more informed and educated. I’m confident to say Kiddie Up Nannies is taking the correct
steps to elude abuse. We are now well-versed and informed and will continue to educate ourselves. I hope you will do the same!
If you would like to learn more about Parenting Safe Children, Feather Berkower’s book or services please visit www.ParentingSafeChildren.com.