X-Plan: Giving Your Child A Way Out

Apr 18, 2017

We’ve all had those moments. Uncomfortable. Awkward. A pit of dread in your stomach.

You’re in a situation that you’d rather not be in. Can’t I wish myself away from this?, you think. Now – imagine that you’re 14 years old. Consider for a moment how utterly embarrassed, trapped and confused you may feel. When I was 14, the last thing I wanted to do was be ostracized from my peers. But, in all honesty, there were many times when I found myself in situations that I wish I had been smarter to find my way out of.

Roots of the X-Plan

As a kid, unpopularity sounds like THE WORST thing that could possibly happen to you. But what if there were a way to exit a scenario without losing face?

That’s what Bert Fulks, author of the now famed “X-Plan” came up with for his family. For those sticky situations that arise, all Bert’s son had to do was text an “X” to a member of his family and they’d call with a “family emergency.”

This is a way for kids to quickly and safely leave a situation without looking like a “dweeb”, “loser” or “narc” and thus, committing social suicide. Beyond the vanity of looking uncool among peers, the X-Plan also offers another benefit: trust between child and parents.


Why This Is Good For Kids

Yes, saving face is important when you’re a tween or teen. But also, knowing that you’re mature enough to read the situation and ask for help is a big deal. Not just for your own safety, but also in your parent’s eyes. Their number one job is to make sure you’re safe.

Because this plan only requires you to text one letter, you can do it quickly & without peers noticing. Plus, it’s easy to remember.

Why This Is Good For Parents

Peace of mind. Open communication. Building of trust. The list goes on and on. What goes along with this plan, though, is the unwritten rule that parents should not grill their child about why they used the “X-Plan” in a given situation.

In order to keep the communication open and truly two-way, kids need to know there is no judgement or repercussions. Let them know they can share as much – or as little – as they want about why they used the plan.

Build your own family’s X-Plan with our printable version here