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Resources and information for parents.

WHAT DO I TELL MY CHILDREN

The following are some sample statements you can use when explaining to your children what has happened and what may happen next. (Copyright jointly held by Gateway Battered Women's Shelter and Project Pave)

What Do I Tell My Children About The Violence:

  • What is happening in not your fault.
  • People are not for hitting.
  • Hitting is one way of being mean. Hurting someone's feelings (name calling, threats, ignoring someone) is mean too.
  • When adults hit each other, it is not OK and they need to help to stop.
  • It is not OK to hit or yell at people or animals.
  • I care about myself and you to much to let someone keep hurting me.
  • It is important that you feel safe, and you're not safe if you get in the middle of our fights.
  • If you don't feel safe here, you can go to a neighbor's house for help.
  • I love Daddy, but I won't let him keep hurting me and scaring you.
  • I don't want you to feel that it is OK to hit when you are angry of feeling bad.
  • I am afraid when I get hit and I don't want to always be afraid.
  • In order to get help to stop the hitting, we need to ask for help from the police, our family, counselors, our friends, the court; and sometimes that means the person who hits has to go away.

What Do I Tell My Children About The Police at our House:

  • The police were called because I (or a friend or relative) was afraid that I would keep getting hurt if someone didn't stop the hitting.
  • I was afraid when the police came, but I was more afraid of being hurt.
  • People you hit don't stop by themselves and sometimes the police are needed to stop them.
  • The police came to our house to help us. We needed their help and Daddy needed their help to stop hurting me and making you scared.

What Do I Tell My Children About Going to Jail:

  • The police felt that Daddy would hurt me again if they left.
  • I felt that Daddy would hurt me again if the police left.
  • For us to be safe tonight, it is important for Daddy to go to jail.
  • Daddy needed time alone to calm down and think about why he hurts and scares us.
  • People in a family have the right to feel safe, and sometimes a family member has to leave so the family can feel safe.

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