These days, it’s nearly impossible not to have a conversation with your children about terrorism. They’re seeing it on television and talking about it with their friends. It’s a conversation we must have with our children so our families can be prepared in an emergency situation. What would your family do if there was a terrorist attack or an active shooter situation in your town or even at your child’s school? Being prepared in a high-stress situation is the best defense to ensure your safety and that of your family. Here are some steps you can take to keep your family safe.
1. Buy a gun for your home and carry it when you’re out.
Perhaps your best defense for protecting yourself and your family during an attack or home invasion is exercising your 2nd Amendment rights. Unarmed individuals can’t defend themselves if the attacker has a gun.
2. Take courses in self-defense and medical aid.
The whole family can take classes in self-defense, learning how to react in stressful situations and also learning maneuvers for fending off attacks. Many people freeze as a result of fear, and these classes will help you to overcome that emotion. First aid is also critical in case of an injury to yourself or others around you.
3. Make sure your children listen and mind you.
If you have unruly children who don’t want to listen and take direction from you or other adults, now is the time to get a handle on that. It is crucial in an emergency situation that your children listen to you and follow directions.
4. Prepare a backpack filled with supplies.
In case of an emergency situation in which you and your family must evacuate, have a backpack handy filled with things you may need, such as water, ready-to-eat food, a small medical kit, power cords for phones, a flashlight, etc.
5. Know your surroundings and exits at all times.
Whenever you and your family attend events and outings together, be aware of your surroundings. Familiarize yourself with all of the exits so that if a situation arises, you can get to those exists without hesitation. Practice this with your children when you are out running errands around town so they get used to being observant.
6. Run, if there is an opportunity.
I have told my children this many times. If there is ever a situation where they are not with me and there is a shooter, look for the closest escape and run. Getting as far away from the situation as possible creates the best chance for survival.
7. If you can’t run, hide.
If there is not an opportunity to get you and your family to an exit, find a place to hide. Talk with your children ahead of time and practice this.
8. Have a family code word for danger.
Have a code word that only your family understands to mean that there’s danger and it’s time to leave immediately. “Code Red,” “danger,” and “emergency” are all words you could use to alert your family.
9. If you see something, say something.
Too often, people don’t want to get involved when they see something odd for fear of persecution, so they remain silent. This could be one of the worst decisions you make. If you see something suspicious, say something. Even if it turns out to be nothing, the police will almost always tell you “better safe than sorry.”
10. Don’t let fear run your life.
After 9/11, authorities told the public to not live in fear. The best thing to do was to go back to our normal lives. Terrorists want you to be afraid. Go out and do your normal activities; don’t let fear paralyze you and your family.
What would you and your family do in an emergency situation? Leave us a comment and let us know.