Parents have always grappled with harsh realities to protect their children. But our culture poses risks that are difficult to navigate, because they aren’t obviously dangerous. In fact, we take them for granted because they’re so much a part of our busy lives.
The greatest dangers to our kids may not be the ones we worry most about, the ones that make the evening news, like abduction and child molestation. Random abductions by strangers are relatively rare in the U.S., approximately 200 annually, and molestation is almost always perpetrated by someone the child knows. Most parents can reduce these risks dramatically with attentive parenting.
Stress researchers now believe that the greatest risk for many children is the stress of the way we live. Stress has an actual biological impact which causes physical, emotional and brain changes. Stress makes all humans, young and old, more vulnerable to dangers from anxiety to depression, and from obesity to substance abuse.
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