What will I tell my girls?

July 15, 2016

I worry that they may never experience the innocence that I experienced as a child

Another attack… more lives lost… it’s been a heavy last few weeks around the world and each time something happens, a little part of me dies.

This morning I woke to the news of the attack in Nice (France) by a crazed individual ploughing through a huge crowd of innocent people celebrating Bastille Day.

Last week it was the news of an innocent African-American man shot multiple times in front of his four-year old daughter for trying to pull out his licence as requested by the police officer who shot him.

How do I explain this to my kids?

What advice could I possibly impart on them to prepare them for stuff like this?

How could I ever possibly begin to explain why humans are so shit to each other when I don’t know the answer myself?

There is no denying that that there have always been problems, but I realise now that growing up I was incredibly lucky to have been brought up in a relatively peaceful time where I didn’t have to worry about the threat of terrorist attacks, cyber bullying, and other ‘now’ threats.

A sad but realistic realisation

I’ve also come to realise that you really are lucky where you are born, and that sadly the colour of your skin, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs or the level of physical and/or mental ability/function can and will determine whether or not you are subjected to certain type of treatment, be it positive or negative.

How do I explain that to my kids? That some people are treated different to others dependent on those factors…

The worry of a mother

It sometimes overwhelms and frightens me the world my girls are going to grow up in, and I worry that they may never experience the innocence that I experienced as a child.

My two beautiful girls
My two beautiful girls

But then I see all the beauty that there is out there and it restores my faith in humanity again and I have renewed hope.

I see people standing up to these tragedies in unity and as a peaceful force, standing together in solidarity and shining a light in the darkest of times.

So what will I tell my girls?

I will tell them to believe in the good in people despite the terrible things that happen.

I will tell them not to be naive and believe every person is good-hearted or that everyone will treat them right, but to live a life full of curiosity and passion in spite of it.

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Myjanne Jensen
Myjanne Jensen is the mother of two little girls; a freelance journalist who works full-time at Griffith University as the Placement Officer for the Journalism & PR Internship Program; writes for Scenestr.com.au; and, is a Community Correspondent for 612 ABC Brisbane.

Myjanne has a strong interest in a variety of different issues ranging from women’s rights, social justice, health and wellbeing, multiculturalism, human behaviour, music and the arts.

Connect with Myjanne on Facebook, Twitter or read some of her other published work on her blog.