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Locals snapping pictures of my children?

  1. #33
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    nicolejoy, i think your case is an exception and i too, would be very protective of my extra-special child. in that, i am completely with you....

    the "facts" provided are urban legends with no substantiation whatsoever.

    that said, i did experience something myself (not hearsay)

    hubby and i took our two kids to snoopy land in shatin. my local hubby overheard two women discussing how much they could "get" for my kids over the boarder.

    what did we do? took our kids somewhere else to play.


    in 16+ years here, i've only heard of a handful of cases of kidnapping of children in hk....when i think about it, it wasn't so much kidnapping as it was a "special" boy letting go of his mum's hand in the mtr and getting lost. last he was seen, was over the border... how he managed that without ID or passport is beyond me....but that was probably 10+ years ago.

  2. #34
    Anne1212 is offline Registered User
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    If u think HK is bad try living in mainland China! Babies (Chinese and more for get lots and lots of attentions, welcomed or not. Chinese

  3. #35
    Anne1212 is offline Registered User
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    If u think HK is bad try living in mainland China! Babies (Chinese and more for western) get lots and lots of attentions, welcomed or not. They genuinely enjoy seeing kids and playing with them. (having said that not when they have their driving cap on as most don't give way to pushchairs...). Sometimes I miss plane trips to/from china as all those aunties keep my son entertained! (having said that I don't miss the criticisms thrown my way about my son being too thin or not wearing enough clothes...)

    We as parents have to be careful but I reckon can't be too worried about everything or else we wouldn't be able to eat or sleep or live a life!

    I don't think there is a serious problem of kidnapping in HK. It is a big problem in china though esp in rural areas. There have been many reportings of cases and recent crackdowns. Beijing was not too bad but I was a bit more careful after a very excited fellow diner in a restaurant just picked up my baby from the pushchair and ran down a couple of tables to show her family! Scared the hell out of me but I could tell (afterwards) she was just too excited and lost sense. Unacceptable but not meant bad...

    A bit off topic but I used to be quite shocked how many people would like to take a picture WITH my over 6 foot English husband everywhere in china. they've just never seen anything like that before! He told me when he was in I think Tibet years ago an old lady was giving him a 360 degree stare and he just smiled back. After both side gestured goodwill she actually pulled the hair on his arm!! She must thought 'what a hairy strange looking man!'. Ever since our son was born however all stares and attention were transferred. Most people would stare at him and then me (up and down and up) and then our son, and then smile and then keep staring... Just imagine the stares we have...

  4. #36
    bonita is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for clearing those urban legends / false e-mail circulations. I was skeptical when I read them myself, but as a parent, I do make mental notes on how things like these might happen.
    There were times when strangers were waving & signaling my 20-month-old daughter to go to them or attempted to hold her hand, so I can't be too careful, right?

  5. #37
    howardcoombs is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by bonita View Post
    Thanks for clearing those urban legends / false e-mail circulations.
    You're welcome. I take pleasure in stomping out urban legends, especially ones that give parents needless worry.
    I was skeptical when I read them myself, but as a parent, I do make mental notes on how things like these might happen.
    If you were skeptical, why did you report them as fact?
    You brought them to peoples attention by saying "There were many incidents of mainlanders snatching kids in HK"; thats not being skeptical, thats being alarmist. Please stop it, it doesn't do anyone any good.
    There were times when strangers were waving & signaling my 20-month-old daughter to go to them or attempted to hold her hand, so I can't be too careful, right?
    If strangers were doing that to my child, in public, while I was present, I would think to myself "What nice people. They like my child and want to play with her"
    What is the first thought that comes to your mind in that situation?

  6. #38
    carang's Avatar
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    if i am standing with my child, then i think exactly the same as howard.

  7. #39
    Frenchy is offline Registered User
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    Apart from understanding the cultural side of this behaviour, you also have to consider the acceptance level of the parent. Some days I would let go, some days not at all, because i'm in a hurry, because it's the 10th time in an hour etc...
    Also, someone asking gently to take a picture is ok, someone grabbing my son and pulling him away from me without even looking at me is NO.
    If we go to the beach and one lady comes to take a picture, it's ok, having 10 people around us is NO !
    If we go to a quiet beach to go away from the crowd and have a guy taking 20 shots of my son who is playing naked in the sand, it's a NO NO and NO !
    If we are in a plane and someone wants to hold my baby (after asking), it's ok, touching my son's head while he is sleeping and waking him up, it's NO !!

    It's not only us who have to accept these differences and gently smile at whoever wants to take a picture or grab our kids, they also have to consider OUR acceptance level, many people take pictures without even giving a look at the parents, so there is nothing wrong with refusing.

  8. #40
    howardcoombs is offline Registered User
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    No one can tell you to accept things you are not comfortable with. Your family, your rules. You decide on your boundaries.

    However, one must accept that we are living in Hong Kong and it is part of China (we are not in Europe nor in North America). Over here, it is very normal for people to take pictures of kids, touch them, cuddle them etc etc.
    This is not strange, they are not pedophiles, they are not trying to kidnap the kids. They are just normal people treating children the way children are treated in this part of the world.
    If these things bother you and stresses you, then its best to stay at home as this will happen all over Hong Kong as well as China along with rest of the Orient.

    Getting all bothered, yelling at people "NO NO NO" will just add more to your stress levels and will not solve the issue; after one person leaves, another whole family will show up and your stress levels will go up even more.

    Personally, when I came to Hong Kong, I accepted this to be the norm, told my kids to enjoy it and it didnt bother any one of us at all. Its your family and its your choice.
    You can just accept it or you can choose to fight it and take the stress that comes with it....

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