A big part of protecting our children from abuse is teaching them about healthy boundaries. We discuss good versus bad touches with our children, but we must go one step further in order to truly drive home the point that their bodies are their own- we ourselves must respect their wishes in relation to their bodies. Whether our children are setting a boundary during a game of tickles or goodbyes with grandparents, we must reinforce that no means no and that their boundaries deserve to be respected.
Examples: [During a tickle game] “You asked me to stop tickling you, so I’m stopping.” OR [during goodbyes] “You don’t want to give grandpa a kiss goodbye. You can choose to give him a high five or a handshake instead.”