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Keeping Your Kids Safe in a Scary World

Studies show parents have the greatest influence on whether a child engages in drug use and teenage sex. Are you parenting with this in mind?
Last Updated
March 22, 2023
posted on
November 16, 2016
Minute Read

Parents, it’s a scary world we live in today. There’s no denying it. The world your kids are growing up in is even scarier than it was for my kids when they were growing up. Technology, an over-sexualized culture, drugs, alcohol—all of these are real threats to your kids, no matter how old they are, no matter how good they are. Don’t believe me? Look at the facts:

One out of every four teens has an STD.

Over 40% of tenth-graders drink alcohol.

The average child spends between 7-10 hours a day in front of a screen.

Moms and dads have the greatest influence in a child's life.You are raising kids in a tech-sex-drug-filled world. I don’t say this to scare you though. In fact, I have a lot of hope in parents today. I believe you have the greatest influence in your child’s life and that you can help navigate them through the scary world of sex and drugs and the internet.

I’ve done a lot of research into what keeps kids safe in the world they live in today. I’ve come up with nine essentials that all parents must do and know in order to keep their kids safe. Can you guess what the first essential is?


Yep. A study done on over 90,000 kids showed that a strong parent-child relationship is the number one factor in keeping kids safe as they grow up. In research terms, this is called “parent connectedness.”

Parent connectedness happens when a child feels like his parent is available to him, when he feels loved by his parent and—pay attention to this—when a child feels like his parent has set clear guidelines. Kids want rules. They need rules. This is what makes them feel safe and loved. And when they feel safe and loved, they are much less likely to fall into the traps of sex, drugs and social media.

Today's kids are growing up in a tech, sex and drug-filled world.

Nothing can replace parent-connectedness. No after-school program or activity or club. A parent’s ability to connect with her child is still the most effective at keeping her child safe.

If you fear for your child as she tries to navigate this tech-sex-drug-filled world, begin by working on your relationship with her.

I share all 9 essentials you need to keep your kids safe in my online course,  How to Keep Your Kids Safe in a Tech-Sex-Drug-Filled World, which is available now!

Raising kids in the world today is scary, but you don’t have to do it alone.

Dr. Meg Meeker

Practicing pediatrician, parent, grandparent, coach, speaker, and author. Say hello on instagram: @MegMeekerMD or by email:

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