Just a quick break from the Mom-tionary to ask you a question: does your child know what to do if he/she gets lost? Taken? Merely separated from you in a crowd or store?
I'm going to tell you what I do. I'm not saying that you have to do what I do, but please have some sort of talk with your children.
First off, I've told Monkey Son #1 to never, EVER go with a stranger. Not if they offer him candy. Not if they want him to help them find a lost puppy. Do.not.go. If they try to take him, kick, scratch, fight, bite, and scream until he gets away.
Second, I've told him that if he were to get lost, stay put. Look around and see if he can find a police officer, but don't wander off and look. Only move his head. If he doesn't see one, find a lady and tell her you are lost.
Third, I've taught him what I call the address song. I use the tune "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star." So for example,
Twinkle, twinkle little star
John Doe lives at 555
How I wonder what you are.
Any Street, Anytown.
Then I repeat the tune again, saying, "His mommy's phone is..." followed by my 10-digit cell number.
None of us want to talk about this. It's a scary thing to think about for a parent or child. But what does my heart good is to see Monkey Son #1 really remembering this. The other day, we were at Target, when Husband and Monkey Son #2 got separated from Monkey Son #1 and I.
"We lost Daddy," I said.
Monkey Son #1 quickly replied, "I don't see a police officer, so find a lady."