Yes, You CAN Be Too Careful

Am I the only one noticing an increase of warnings on Facebook, along the lines of “I SAW A CREEPY PERSON AND I’M POSITIVE HE/SHE WAS TRYING TO HURT ME”  ?

Maybe it’s just a coincidence. Or maybe the alarmist stories have been around a long time, and I’m just now paying attention.

Here’s an example from 2015:

 

And from 2016:

 

And one posted three days ago:

 

And let’s not forget the bad guys giving away free samples at Walmart, or the bad guys drugging people at Dillard’s, or the bad guys taking kids out of theme parks,  or the bad guy pulling people into white vans, or the bad guys posing as plumbers, or the bad guys posing at teen-employers...

Also, don’t accept candy.

And don’t accept business cards.

And even if someone SAYS they’re a kidnapper, you should still be suspicious.

 

 

In other words, trust no one. Then, when you have your own harrowing story of life-or-death (and you will!), make sure you share it with the world.

This was the near-miss I posted about today.

 

Now that I’m thinking about this, perhaps all of us should be especially distrustful of someone who worries about everything?

I mean, even if there isn’t a “bad guy” in the store–what if there’s a jumpy person nearby who thinks I’M the bad guy?

Women should carry pepper spray and handbags filled with rocks just in case.

If the stranger next to you spends too much time reading scary warnings on social media…and if you try to hand her a piece of gum or a business card…well, you see where I’m going with this.

You can’t be too careful!

Also–beware of a new scam. Psych professionals are diagnosing people with something called “paranoid personality disorder.”

Don’t fall for it.

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12 thoughts on “Yes, You CAN Be Too Careful

  1. Gene

    Paranoia should be avoided, I agree haha, but there are more sickos it seems these days than before. Although I feel safe running alone, my husband bought me pepper spray to carry and he’s talking of getting a little gun for me too. I laughed at the idea before, but now my stomping grounds run right next to an interstate and a forest. Prayer is my biggest defense, but a little lead might get the job done if needed 🙂 I see what you’re saying, though. There’s a tipping point between discernment and intuition, and paranoia.

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    1. mrsmcmommy Post author

      I was actually inspired by a real-life friend of mine, who wrote this status a couple of days ago:

      “Ok…I bit the bullet and went to Walmart by myself this evening. ..not again…a couple sitting in their car wanted me to come listen to a noise in their car…really !? It’s not like I’m a cute young thing…I’m a Grandma ! Pretty unnerving. ..people are scary. .😨..please ladies be aware of your surroundings!!”

      At first, I couldn’t tell if she was being serious. But, as I scrolled through her timeline, I saw post after post after post of “be careful about THIS,” and most of them had been confirmed false stories.

      What we meditate on becomes our reality. There are many statistics which seem to indicate there aren’t more sickos than there used to be. We’re simply more aware of them now AND it’s much easier for us to make up and share stories that didn’t even happen at all.

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    2. mrsmcmommy Post author

      (Oh, I should mention, many of the lady’s friends commented with things like, “SCARY!” and “I hope you have a gun!” …now, my family is armed. But, when the lady’s husband says, “aim and shoot!” because someone asked about a car noise, I’m afraid things have gotten out of hand.)

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      1. Gene

        Lol, That is a bit extreme. Maybe they thought they had something wrong with their car and they wanted another opinion? I definitely know what you’re talking about though, if I dwell on being attacked, I’m more likely to cross over to paranoia and be suspicious of everyone. I grew up in the country, my parents let us cross the highway for goodness sake. It wasn’t until the past couple years that my dear father has been watching too much news on TV and worries about me, then there’s my over-protective husband (most of my borrowed trouble is projected on me, haha) Sometimes I just run with a “grr” face to scare away any potential threats, lol, intimidating right? I find if I say hello to everyone I pass it’s much more pleasant for everybody. But anyway…I’m glad you wrote about this. It’s wise to be aware of your surroundings, but where there is evil, good always triumphs. Even in tragedy, eventually. Living in constant fear like that is dishonoring to God; lack of trust in His power and supremacy over creation.

        quite the gift of satire, you have! hahaha

        Liked by 1 person

      2. mrsmcmommy Post author

        I appreciate the compliments! 🙂

        And, yes, what you said about tragedy is spot-on, too. If something terrible were to happen, I’m sure I would want to beat myself up about it. It’s human to go through all the “would have/should have” scenarios. But, I hope I’d eventually come to realize that worrying doesn’t add a day to our lives. Even if I think I’m being productive and protective, I’m probably making my life miserable. (I might as well be chained in some creepy man’s basement, if I’m constantly worrying about creepy men NOW.)

        I wrote a new post just a few minutes ago about my daughter getting lost in my parents’ neighborhood. It turns out, there’s at least one nice person who lives in that area. 🙂

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  2. Jasmine Ruigrok

    Whilst wisdom can cross into paranoia, I think the people who share these stories have a point. It only takes a split second of inattention at the wrong place, at the wrong time for someone to take advantage. Whilst I would consider some of these responses simply to be (un)common sense, not many young parents I see are very attentive to their kids, or very responsible for where they are allowed to wander. Again, both extremes, but if a lax parent runs across one of these stories and gets a wake up call like, “you know, maybe I shouldn’t let my thirteen year old wander around the mall car park at 11:30 at night”, then it’s only a good thing for the child.

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    1. mrsmcmommy Post author

      It’s definitely a fine line between being aware/responsible…and borrowing trouble. 🙂

      Above thread, I wrote the real-life status update from a Facebook acquaintance which inspired this post. I think I would be a little more sympathetic if we were sharing stories of “cautionary tales” which HAD ACTUALLY ENDED TRAGICALLY, rather than all of these cases of people getting “bad feelings” about someone and automatically turning them into a sexual predator in their minds, without further evidence…

      I danno.

      But I meant what I said about being almost more afraid of the increasing Stranger Danger culture than I am of the “bad guys.” I think I’m much more likely to have the police called on me by a nosy neighbor who doesn’t like my parenting than to have one of my kids taken. :/

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  3. Wally Fry

    This really amused me. On our recent trip to Israel we saw something that really shocked many of the folks on the tour. In the old city of Jerusalem, there were small children just walking by themselves to school everywhere. Some were probably kindergarten age, yet they were weaving their way through throngs of people like they didn’t have a care in the world, and didn’t seem a bit scared. I thought some of the Americans were going to have strokes! I found it funny that children in a place we think is so horribly dangerous can walk to school with little fear, and most of us would not let our kids walk to the corner alone here in our “safe” country.

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    1. mrsmcmommy Post author

      I agree.
      Maybe it’s time for me to write about my recent parenting fail. (My almost-six-year-old was walking to her friends’ house–FOUR HOUSES AWAY–as she has done a thousand times. But, apparently, she decided to cross the street that time and got lost.)

      It was pretty terrifying when a strange woman brought her home. I felt like a terrible mother, for not realizing my baby was crying in a stranger’s arms, and I didn’t even know it.

      But it occurred to me: something bad “could have” happened, BUT IT DIDN’T. The strange woman turned out to be another caring mother, who looked out for my daughter when she saw her scared. And there are LOTS of strangers exactly like that…wanting to help… like friends we haven’t met yet…

      Yeah, I totally understand the desire to wrap our kids in plastic. (We’ve changed the way we handle “walking to her friends’ house” for awhile. lol.) But I think this was a learning experience rather than something to regret forever. And I certainly didn’t write a post warning everyone against making the same “mistake.” 🙂 I don’t think it was a mistake! We learned there are some great people in my parents’ neighborhood.

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      1. Wally Fry

        You have made a really good point there. I actually do believe there are more people who would help a child in distress than harm one. I happen to feel very protective towards the people in my life, but it’s also true that sometimes the best way to protect them…is let them learn how to protect themselves.

        What I did notice as I watched these kids was that people were watching them, as they walked by. I suspect that if somebody had behaved badly, that some adult would have stepped in, and Mom would have been informed in minutes.

        Maybe that is what’s wrong with us; we have stopped looking out for each other.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Parenting Fail: A Stranger Found My Child | Cultures at War

  5. Pingback: Parenting Fail: A Stranger Found My Child | Cultures at War

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