Things To Never Say To A Child About Nuclear War

With Russia placing its nuclear stockpile on high alert, many are comparing today’s political climate with that of the Cold War. When your child inevitably comes to you with questions about nuclear war, here are things you should never say.

“See? This is what happens when you don’t make your bed.”

“See? This is what happens when you don’t make your bed.”

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You already used that one when their hamster died.

“I’m good friends with Mikhail Gorbachev, and he promised me that it would never happen.”

“I’m good friends with Mikhail Gorbachev, and he promised me that it would never happen.”

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Every child knows that Gorbachev has not been in a position to influence Russian nuclear policy since 1991.

“The access code for our fallout shelter is 54983.”

“The access code for our fallout shelter is 54983.”

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Children will never learn how to be resilient if everything is given to them.

“It’s no big deal unless you want to live to be an adult.”

“It’s no big deal unless you want to live to be an adult.”

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Don’t tell a child that the only people who need to worry are those who want to grow up, go to college, get married, and start a family someday.

“You can still visit Dad’s fallout shelter every other weekend”

“You can still visit Dad’s fallout shelter every other weekend”

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It’s probably wise to refrain from mentioning your divorce and the resulting trauma they already have.

“If they drop a bomb, it’s every man for themselves.”

“If they drop a bomb, it’s every man for themselves.”

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At least give them the hope you’d try and carry them to safety.

“I know it’s awkward, but all kids have to go through nuclear war.”

“I know it’s awkward, but all kids have to go through nuclear war.”

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This is just patently false.

“Nuclear war could beat up Daddy, easy.”

“Nuclear war could beat up Daddy, easy.”

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No child wants to hear their dad is anything less than a superman with the hardiness of a cockroach.

“Your magic blanket won’t do shit.”

“Your magic blanket won’t do shit.”

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True, but just let them have the blanket, for fuck’s sake.

“If it came down to it and we didn’t have enough room in the bomb shelter, I’d save your brother.”

“If it came down to it and we didn’t have enough room in the bomb shelter, I’d save your brother.”

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It’s better to leave this surprise for the moment.

“It definitely won’t happen before your math test on Friday, I can tell you that much.”

“It definitely won’t happen before your math test on Friday, I can tell you that much.”

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Oh, sure, go ahead and ruin the one potentially good thing that could stem from nuclear war.

“Any safety drills you do in school are empty theater.”

“Any safety drills you do in school are empty theater.”

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What’s to be gained by telling a child their desk is an absolute joke of a barricade?

“The idea of ​​nuclear war isn’t all that scary when you realize climate forecasts don’t give us long anyway.”

“The idea of ​​nuclear war isn’t all that scary when you realize climate forecasts don’t give us long anyway.”

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Oh God, you’re scaring them even more.

“The lucky ones die immediately.”

“The lucky ones die immediately.”

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Don’t tell a child it’s better to be vaporized than to die slowly from burns or radiation poisoning.

“If you were at the table, the negotiations would look different.”

“If you were at the table, the negotiations would look different.”

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As a child, they simply do not have the international relations expertise to make a difference.

“The pure of heart will all survive”

“The pure of heart will all survive”

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All this does is shift children’s worry from whether they will live or die to whether they’re good enough to live or die.

​“The good news is that millions of children on the other side will die too.”

​“The good news is that millions of children on the other side will die too.”

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A child won’t be comforted by knowing their own death will be matched by another 5-year-old’s in Moscow.

“Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.”

“Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.”

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Seriously, can’t you lay off the Manhattan Project references for one day?

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