As parents, we are very careful when it comes to our kids. All of us want our children to be safe and pray for their well-being. We teach them everything they must know for their safety. But have you had a conversation with your child about child molestation? According to a 2016 NCRB data, 19765 cases were registered in India under the POCSO act which deals with child abuse. What is even more shocking is the fact that 94.8% of these rape cases were of children being raped by someone they knew. It becomes important in such cases to talk to your child about it so that your child is protected from child molestation or any form of abuse.
Child molestation is a type of child abuse in which a particular child is abused sexually by any individual either physically or by showing pornography to the kid.
There are various ways through which child molestation can be avoided:
Educate your child about child abuse. It is not a topic that needs to be hidden from children. Teach them the warning signs. You can also teach them a secret code word that they can use when they are in trouble or whenever they feel uncomfortable, so that they can easily give the signal to you.
Spend some time with your child regularly, know about their daily activities and the people they are spending time with. This will not only make you aware of their surroundings but will also maintain a strong bond between the two of you.
Make your child comfortable with you when it comes to serious taboo topics like these. Often the culprit gives threats to the child to not speak a word about these wrong-doings. Maintain a loving and safe environment for your child, so that they feel comfortable to talk about uncomfortable situations.
Teach your children the proper names for their private parts like vagina/penis or buttocks instead of ‘bottom’. Knowing their body parts will give them the ability to talk about it properly and describe their experiences better. Don’t hesitate to talk to your child about, it can save them from a lot of trauma.
Also read: 6 Warning Signs That Your Child Is A Bully
Do not classify touch as good or bad, as it is normally taught. Tell them about private touch and what comes under it. All of the private touches might not hurt or feel bad. Kids might not classify an uncomfortable touch as a bad touch but they will classify it as a private touch.
Make your child aware of boundaries. Let them know that no one has the right to make them uncomfortable or touch them when they do not want to be touched, not even their relatives. Even they must not touch someone else’s private part as the perpetrator might ask them to touch them. Give them the right to say “NO”, even to you, their parents.
Ask your child to inform you immediately if someone takes a picture of their private parts. Tell them that no one should see them naked apart from their parents or caregivers that you wholeheartedly trust.
Also read: How To Teach Your Child To Deal With A Bully
Tell your kid that secrets about their body are not okay especially if kept from parents. More often than not, the culprits use this tactic and convert this into a game for the child in which they need to keep the abuse a secret from their parents.
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