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An Australian mum has spoken out about her and her husband’s ‘family rule’ that bans any male from being left to supervise their daughters – including friends and family.
In an opinion piece for Daily Life, mum-of-two Kasey Edwards explains how the rule was created when her first daughter was born. Eight years and the birth of a second daughter later, the couple are still sure this is the right decision for their family and have never been tempted to waver from it.
To ensure their safety, both Kasey and her husband have banned their children from attending extra-curricular activities supervised by only men and they won’t let them attend sleepovers if there’s a chance they could be left alone with any males.
Kasey explained the precautions she goes to: ‘Group slumber parties are also out. When there is a group of excited children it is far too easy for one of them to be lured away by a father or older brother without being noticed.
‘When my daughter goes on play dates I make sure that she will be supervised by a woman at all times. So far she has only slept at one friend’s house.
‘Beforehand I spoke to my friend about our rule and clarified that if she’s going to pop out to shops for example and intends to leave our daughter in the care of her husband or another man then the sleepover cannot happen.’
The mum reflects that this isn’t a conversation that would go down well with everyone.
‘As you can imagine, this was not an easy conversation to have. To my
friend’s credit she respected our family policy even though she doesn’t
have the same rules herself.
‘I am dreading the day when I have to have the same conversation with someone who will not be as understanding.’
Explaining the reasons behind her rule, Kasey continues, ‘Child sexual abuse is so prevalent that I won’t back down on my no-male-babysitters policy.
‘Child abuse by men is so common that taking precautions to keep my daughters safe is a no-brainer.’
Despite clearly having a strong opinion on the subject, Kasey reiterates that she isn’t suggesting all men are a risk to her children.
‘To be clear, I’m not saying that all men are sexual predators. Nor do I
think that men harbour predatory instincts that lie dormant only to
spring forth at the first opportunity.
‘The blanket rule against allowing our daughters to be in the care of
lone male adults means that we do not have to make a moral assessment of every man.
‘My husband and I do not want to delve into the characters of every man that we know and assess whether or not they are potential sexual predators, so we apply our rule to all men to avoid casting aspersions on people.’
Although Kasey suspects she will be branded as a ‘man hater’ she has encouraged readers to see her rule as a ‘straight forward risk analysis’.
‘When I look at my daughter’s class lining up on assembly and think that
statistically between one and nine of them are going to be sexually abused before they reach adulthood, I am determined to do everything I can to make sure my daughter is not going to be one of them.
‘My husband and my decision is based on straightforward risk analysis: a cold, hard, unemotional reading of the statistical data.’
Would you consider a male babysitter ban? Tell us in the comment box!