Last month I had done a post on teaching your kid the difference between right and wrong touch and today I will be discussing about recognising the signs that indicate that your child is being sexually abused. Since April is the month of Child Sexual Abuse awareness, I decided to write on this topic that disturbs all of us parents.
With the onset of nuclear families and both the parents working, it sometimes become difficult to keep an eye on children’s day to day activities and hence they become victim to sexual abuse. However, before we go further let’s see what is child sexual abuse? Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) means inappropriate touching of child’s genitals or showing him or her adult videos, or films. There are numerous ways a child can be sexually abused and he or she may not be able to talk to you about it but there are signs, which if you look out for can indicate out that something is not normal in your kid’s life.
Sudden drop in grades: If an otherwise intelligent student starts getting average or below average marks then it’s a sure cause of worry and it could be that he or she is being troubled by something or someone. The world of child sexual abuse is dark, dirty and secretive and the adults involved in sexual abuse of children threaten them with dire consequences, hence the kids remain quiet and keep suffering. However, as parents we need to be more compassionate and talk to the child in calming tones and with loads of love and affection. Chances are that they will give you all the clues or they will talk to you directly about a certain adult misbehaving with them.
Reverting to child-like behaviours: When your child is properly toilet trained and quite capable of holding his bladder, but starts bed-wetting during the night then it is surely a cause of concern. Generally bed wetting happens because the child is feeling insecure, scared and doesn’t know how to handle his or her emotions. In such cases don’t scold the child; instead talk to him about his problem and believe me, the child will open up.
Playing with toys in a sexually explicit way: If you find your child playing with his toys in a way that is not appropriate for his age then it’s a cause of worry and this is the time to talk to him lovingly. Remember they need your love and support and if you scold them you may end up losing them forever. So be gentle with them and tell them that you are there for them.