Everyday in the news you hear the horrific details of how a child lost his/her innocence and even worse how they were murdered. During my twenty-five (25) years as a Special Agent, I’ve had an opportunity to investigate and look into the eyes of many sexual predators. Unfortunately, sexual abuse is quite common. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, one in four girls and one in six boys will be abused before they turn 18. Who are the predators? – 90% are relatives of victims or acquaintances such as neighbors, friends, teachers, coaches, etc. A position of trust! Also, it’s important to understand the predator’s goal is to gain the trust of a parent to gain access.
Switched On Red Flags:
- Listen to your instincts concerning anyone who wishes to spend time with your child…overly eager to help.
- A child tells you that he/she doesn’t want to be around a particular person or take part in certain activities.
- Signs of physical abuse: urinary infections, redness or swelling in the genital area or wrists and ankles.
- Sexual comments or inappropriate sexual behavior.
Switching On Children:
Between the ages of 2 – 4 start providing the necessary age appropriate information relating to what’s private and who are the only persons to touch your body. These conversations MUST happen throughout adolescence. Children must know that they own their bodies and they have the power to say “no” to touch even from outwardly “nice” people. Kids must be given the power to tell and seek refuge.
Please share this information, you may just save a life!
Remember, Always stay “Switched On”.