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Touch to parts of our body: Teaching children about the People we Trust and feel safe with

By Vashty 21/01/20201

My goal is simple. I want to help children learn about personal safety. I obviously want to reach as many children as I can, however, even if my book only helps one child it will all be worth it!

An underlying message of Blossom Bunny’s secret is that it is not okay to touch someone else’s body without their permission. This is a message I want children to hear loud and clear. This happens to Blossom bunny in my book and she inevitably keeps it a secret- leading to her feeling worried and unsafe.

Children need to know that they are the boss of their body and that they should only let people touch their body if they trust and feel safe with that person.

Trust and Feel safe!

Trust and Feel Safe!

Trust and Feel Safe!

These are two very important terms. Please let the child in your care know about this.

It does not matter if we are talking about touching a public part or private part of the body, the same rules apply. I will clarify what I am referring to as a public body part.

Parts of the body that are generally acceptable to be seen by others: including but not limited to:

  • Arms

  • Legs

  • Hands

  • Foot

  • Elbow.

Private parts are generally covered up by our clothing and include but are not limited to:

  • Vagina

  • Vulva

  • Penis

  • Bottom

  • Testicles.

It is important to state that different cultures and religions have body parts that may be more private than public over others.

Children in my classes would often say to me that it is not okay for anyone to ever look at or touch your private parts, but your public parts like an arm or a leg for example was okay. I would make them all stop and have a think about this statement for a moment. We would brainstorm this query together and the children would soon discover that there are times when they might need assistance in bathing and dressing (hygiene practises) or they may need help when unwell or for check-ups by a doctor (keeping healthy). These activities may require the child to be seen or touched by an adult in a private area of their body. We would discover that there may in fact be times when this could possibly occur, but we should always remember those two important terms. People we Trust and feel safe with! It definitely would not feel safe to let someone that we are scared of or feel distrust towards to be looking at or touching our body, especially our private parts.

I would also let the children know that if we don’t want a public part of our body touched then we should speak up and let the person know that we don’t like what they are doing. In any of the mentioned circumstances be it public or private parts of our body Encourage the child to say, “Stop it I don’t like it”. An even better idea is to extend on this saying by letting the person know exactly what it is that they are doing that you do not like. For example:

“Stop it I don’t like it when you touch my arm” or, “stop it I don’t like it when you touch my bottom”.

My body is my body, and I am the boss of it!

I truly believe that Blossom bunny will help both children and adults alike navigate these sensitive waters. It demonstrates to young children the consequences of being touched inappropriately and the need to go and confide in a grown up you trust, it in order to get help. My book has been written in a way that this topic can be explored in a comfortable manner in the hope of educating as many children as possible. I really want anyone to be able to read my book to a child and get this message across. It has been purposely written to allow the reader to scaffold upon the message of inappropriate touch to suit their level of comfort. If you purchase Blossom bunny’s secret, you will receive a conversation starter sheet to accompany the book and act as a guide to explore each page. Until my next blog, stay safe and healthy.

Vashty and Blossom bunny

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