Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Preparing Your Family For A Terrorist Attack

Today I cried. Again! Over the awful terrifying horror of yet another terrorist attack.

Last June, packed for our holidays (three days later) I saw the horrific news breaking of Tunisia's Terror Attack 38 people we're shot on the beach and throughout the hotel in June 2015, this was not the first attack in the popular tourist destination but sadly it brought an end to Tunisia's tourist trade. UK holiday company's have cancelled all flights until then end of the 2016 summer season. We had to tell our children that we couldn't go and give them a brief but honest ( we try not to tell fibs) reason why not.

That is when the fear started, we have 3 YOUNG children! How do you protect them through the chaos and the carnage, they don't run fast, they are kids they scare easily. How the hell would we have survived. But you try not to think too much about the fear , or honestly I may never leave the house!

Then this year we had to talk to them about terrorism when Peanut was worried that her wee pal had been in Paris when simultaneous co-ordinated terror attacks killed 130 and left hundreds wounded. She was scared that her pal had only gone to see the Disney people but something awful could have happened. I hate that I have to talk to my 7 year old about why someone would want to kill people!

And so the worry gets stronger, the world is an awful scary dangerous place and I don't want my baby's in danger.

Then yesterday in a country I love and have travelled to numerous times, a country with a special place in my heart because my Great Nana loved it too, more than 30 people were killed by multiple attacks at the airport and on the Metro. Now I've been to Brussels airport and I'll tell you security has always been tight. I'm always searched (yes I'm the one who always sets off the buzzer!) So for this to happen is shocking and the images of pushchairs standing amid the wreckage have had me in pieces.

I know I worry more than most and if I'm honest I could let fear take hold of me just leaving the house because there really is danger everywhere if you let your mind wander. But my husband and I decided that for our peace of mind we need to talk to the kids about public emergencies, what to do if there is a fire or (we didn't give them these examples) an explosion or gunfire

When I was chatting on Facebook to a friend about Brussels and I mentioned it sickens me that my husband and I had planned a chat about this with the kids, her pal from Paris said she had similar conversations with her child and that a video had been shown in schools there, it turns out our government has made one to with the key points for a weapons attack being RUN HIDE TELL. 

The husband and I talked about being aware of our surrounding, knowing where the exits are and the importamce of knowing whats normal for where you are, without being paranoid, are there unattended parcels or bags, are people blocking the exits are the exits clear and available.

For the kids we explained that in public spaces and when we are away from home we need them to be listening and staying nearby, if there is a commotion with loud noises and screaming they are to

  • Hold on to one of us (we in turn will shout to ensure the other knows that all children are accounted for) 
  • That they are to do what we say with no questions if we tell them we are in emergency evacuation, and (and this is the bit that tears me up) 
  • If Mammy and Daddy can not move to help them they must go immediately to the safety of a uniform. 

Don't get me wrong the idea of my kids fending for themselves makes me sick and I know they could get confused and awful things could happen but we needed some kind of plan in place so they and we know that we have to try to stick together and get out.

I will end by saying that as fearful as I am to travel any time soon, we must have trust that security will get tighter and tighter and that we can not live in fear we can't stop our lives because this is terrifying and there are families torn apart because of these attacks but we must just be cautious 

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