A New Zealand mom is crediting a clip she saw on TikTok with helping her find her lost child.
In January 2021, the unnamed woman told her story to the New Zealand Herald and now the child-finding “hack” is going viral.
Little boy lost…and found
The woman was shopping at a Kmart along with her 2-year-old son and her friend on a weekend when the little boy suddenly disappeared. The mom called it the “scariest 10 minutes of my life.”
Thinking quickly, her friend ran to the front of the store and alerted staff not to let any child matching his description out of the store, even if he was accompanied by an adult.
The news source cited the mother’s unlinked Facebook post for the story, in which she explained she first began searching for him “silently,” looking under clothes racks before calling out his name every now and then.
Then, she remembered some good advice she saw somewhere.
“Yes, TikTok,” she admitted.
Shout it out
The trick was posted by parenting blogger Jess Martini, who shared her tips to the platform back in November 2020.
And the most important part:
“Do not start silently looking, you wanna look loudly, and what I mean by that is you start shouting their description while you look.”
Following Martini’s advice, the mom began shouting a description of her little boy while she looked for him in the store, thereby enlisting those within earshot:
“I’m missing a little boy, he’s wearing a yellow shirt and has brown hair. He’s two years old and his name is Nathan,” she yelled to anyone within earshot.”
Luckily, she soon heard a man say the relieving words: “he’s here.”
“I turned back the way I came and there he was. A man had walked past him after hearing me calling out,” the woman wrote.
What a relief!
And the woman gave Martini’s video all the credit. In it, the TikTok’r explains:
“To all parents out there, if your child goes missing, do not search in silence or just call out their name. Shout out loud and clear. Say they’re missing, give a description and repeat, repeat, repeat!”
This keeps parents from looking for their children without help and draws attention to anyone who might be attempting to abscond with them.
“Everyone will be on alert, and if someone is trying to take off with your kid, it will decrease the chances of them getting away,” Martini said.
And the New Zealander wasn’t the only one aided by the video. TikTok user @kells_classroom_chaos shared her success with the technique in a video. She shouted out his clothing description in the parking lot in the hopes that folks would look for him.
He was found safely as well.
Martini said that parents may feel stupid while they’re shouting out this information, but this is certainly one of those cases when it’s really everyone’s best interest to look silly for a moment.
We think it’s a great hack!
Be sure to scroll down below to see Martini’s original video for yourself.
Please SHARE this with your friends and family.
@jesmartiniPSA that I feel can save kids and I’ve used- if your child goes missing in public #momsoftiktok #PSA #nojudgement #fyp #4up #besafe #parentsoftiktok♬ original sound – Jess martini