When Jodie Norton found herself doubled-over in pain in the shower one morning last year, she knew she had to get to the hospital. Her hurdle to help was a common one: She has four children, and two needed to get to school that morning.
Her solution, she thought, would be a pretty foolproof one. She drove to the local hospital with all four children in tow, organising for a neighbour to come and pick up the two eldest boys and take them to school from there.
Instead, what transpired was an alarming potential abduction scenario that was avoided only because her sons remembered a lesson she had taught them only weeks earlier: the “tricky person” concept.
As the US mum details on her blog Time Well Spent, her 10-year-old CJ and her 8-year-old T-Dawg waited patiently outside the hospital for their neighbour to arrive in what they assumed would be a five minute wait. It turned out to be 40.
“In that 40 minutes of obedient sitting and waiting, my two boys experienced their first real-world experience with the freaky, perverted strangers they’ve been intermittently warned about,” she wrote.
“While on that bench, they were approached by an adult female and two punk males who asked them if they’d ‘help them out by going into the bathroom where her boyfriend was hiding from the doctor and see if they could convince him to come out and get treated’. Yes, I’m serious that’s what they said. Even after CJ replied, “No, thank you” they kept at them.”
She went on to explain that the three adults pushed for some time for the boys to go inside the hospital bathroom until they finally let up in an experience she says made her feel “simultaneously sick and grateful”.
It wasn’t until the boys returned home from school that afternoon that she learned of what happened.