Make It Stop: Talking to My Son About Violence

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  1. 01. Sue Coletta

    Wow, Colette. I don’t think there is a right or wrong answer here. God forbid the day ever comes when your son is put in such a horrendous situation, it will be his gut instinct–all the years from watching you and husband, all of what you’ve taught him, that inherent instinct will take over. His true character will shine through anything you could possibly say to him now. Just trust in the fact that you’ve provided him with a good home and have been solid role models. There’s really not much more you can do, IMHO. I have no doubt from what I know about you, from what I’ve read here on your site, that you’ve been open and honest. Trust in that. Above all, trust in him.

  2. 02. colette

    Thanks, Sue, for your support. I so appreciate it. I hesitated to even post this since it’s so specific to my own insecurities and concerns.

  3. 03. Philip DiGiacomo

    Colette, Don’t think for a minute that you are alone in your insecurities and concerns. I have friends and family with young children in Italy, France, South Africa and all across the U.S. who are attempting to make sense of our violent world. As a New Yorker, I might have been too distrustful of others as a young adult, but being hyper aware of my surroundings kept me out of harm’s way more times than I can count, and it still does here in Los Angeles. I think that all kids take comfort from seeing their parents deal with problems in a calm and controlled manner and will mimic that behavior when they are out on their own. Smart, confident kids tend to make the right choices despite what their peers may be doing. Now I admit, I don’t have kids of my own, but I sure as hell remember being one!

  4. 04. colette

    I think you’re right: Smart, confident kids make good choices. Calm confidence without arrogance is what I’m trying to foster in my own kid, and I’m trying to do it through is example–which isn’t always easy, especially since I don’t tend to be particularly calm. 🙂 But my husband and I both try to stress to our kid that he needs to have faith in his own abilities to make good decisions. It also helps that he goes to a school that teaches him to think outside himself about the good of a larger community. What scares me is that the larger community is comprised of so many people who are so angry and so willing to harm others in the name of their own self righteous rage. I don’t know how to teach my son to deal with that reality, except to teach him to show courage and good judgment if ever faced with such individuals.

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