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LawNinvest, Parent
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 20012
Experience:  Mother of two. I am an experienced mother and caregiver and former family law attorney
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What if my 7 year-old is asking about September 11th How ...

Customer Question

What if my 7 year-old is asking about September 11th? How do I best answer him? He is bright for his age and not fooled easily.
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  LawNinvest replied 11 years ago.

Your child is truly bright. At this age you need to tell him the truth. He is probably getting the information from friends or at school and wants to confirm with you.

Just tell your son that unfortunately there are bad people in the world who like to hurt others and that it is our goal that we grow up to be good people, to help people and to choose correct paths, because doing the right thing is greatly rewarded and recognized and will make him a proud human being to himself, his family and the community.

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to AMOM's Post: Here is how he obtained this info - he recently went to NYC with his mother & grandmother and they went the Museum of Arts/National History. I have not been there in many years but apparently they have information/exhibits there that speak to this horrible day. My wife would have guided him away from this as we are careful about watching the national news when the boys are around but he somehow ended up there with his grandmother (her mom) and the discussion/questions ensued. I don't want to tell him it was an accident because it wasn't, however the entire event is pretty complicated and he is not likely capable of understanding it all in complete context. I think it freaks him out a little to know that it likely wasn't an accident and that there are people in the world like this who are that crazy. Now that you know that this info was not obtained at school or from friends, all of whom we know pretty well, does it change/edit your answer? Obviously, the source of the information is from a historical perspective/source rather than friends' thoughts or an academic setting, which would be completely inappropriate for a 1st grader. Thx, Bob
Expert:  LawNinvest replied 11 years ago.
Bob, let me first tell you that I commend you for caring for your son, other parents would simply dismiss this issue or ignore their children when they ask. Hurray for you!!!

Your son is definitely bright and curious. My position does not change. A 7-year old does not need to know the entire history of this tragic event. A child this age will be to overwhealmed and scared with the history and will over-worry. A simple explanation of the truth is enough in my opinion. Being that your child is bright, he already knows the concept of what is bad and bad people our goal is to shift the focus on the importance of being good and a good role-model. You might want to purchase or borrow a book from the library focusing on all the heroes that helped that day or a general book on heroes to explain the good police, firemen, doctors, for us.

See if you can find a book that does not have pictures of that tragic event so he does not focus on that aspect, I think a general book on the subject of heroes might be better. I think maybe borrowing the book or returning it as soon as you are done explaining your point would be ideal, so your child does not keep looking at it and remembering what he has seen.

LawNinvest and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to AMOM's Post: Thanks. BTW, he turns 7 at the end of this month, so technically he isn't 7 just yet. If you know of a book off the top of your head, please recommend one. If not, I am happy to research on my own; it is not a problem.
Expert:  LawNinvest replied 11 years ago.
Sorry, I don't know one off the top of my head, but I have seen many children's books on the subject of heroes. You can also look for books on Fireman, Policeman, etc... for your son to get the ideal on the important roles these people play.