The media covers some or the other story on child molestation involving from teachers to celebrities. People are committing such crimes irrelevant to boundaries of race, class, culture, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality, affecting all types of communities; in ninety percent of the cases, the molester is either known to family or someone from child’s daily routine, cautions Rina, in the weekly column. A Different Truths exclusive.
Children today are around with more adults on a daily basis than ever before. From childcare to sports practices to dance classes, not to mention camps and after-school programs, children are meeting and interacting with many adults on a daily basis. This involvement of adults initiates much crime against children and the most horrifying is Paedophilia.
Paedophilia is a psychiatric disorder in which an adult or older adolescent experiences a primary or exclusive sexual attraction to prepubescent children; we all know it as child molestation. As a mother, it is difficult to assume anything like this happening to our child. The media covers some or the other story on child molestation involving from teachers to celebrities. People are committing such crimes irrelevant to boundaries of race, class, culture, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality, affecting all types of communities; in ninety percent of the cases, the molester is either known to family or someone from child’s daily routine. This is not something that our children can defend or have a choice but the only way to stop this from recurring is to accept the facts and identify if a child is showing any sign of molestation through physical or emotional disturbance.
How to Identify Paedophiles
Child molesters can be identified when we closely examine the alarming sighs usually shown by the molesters at large.
These criminals cannot control their feelings, particularly when a child is around and in a direct contact with them. As parent we can examine such behaviour such as fondling, kissing, touching, coercion, bribery, flattering to touch or kiss a child repeatedly, such a person can be anybody – a friend, aunt, uncle, stepparent, grandparent, teacher or just a grocery person; female child molesters are more likely to abuse boys than girls.
Modus Operandi of Paedophiles
Child molesters keep a close watch towards a child’s likes and dislikes; this can be anything like bringing child’s favourite candy or bringing things, that parents don’t allow child to have it because of age or risk attached to it; such gifts make children not to speak about the molestation as secrets are valuable to most kids as they feel grown up; parents should keep a close eye on things or on such behaviours.
Child molesters try to hook up with children of single parents, who aren’t available to provide as much supervision or they convince the parent that they are nice enough people to supervise without them. Child molesters look for children who are having lack of emotional support or not getting enough attention at home or will try to convince the parents their children are safe with them.
Child molester will often use a range of games, tricks, activities, and language to gain trust or deceive a child, this can be sexually suggestive behaviour, exposing a child to pornographic material, or making them indulge, through affection, care or love; these tactics are ultimately used to isolate and confuse your child.
Child pornography is famous and available from underground world to web world; even some countries gather these offenders as positive tourists, while child pornography is used in many ways from private sexual gratification or trading with other collectors, to preparing children for sexual abuse as part of the child grooming process. Molesters as viewers of child pornography are often obsessive about collecting, categorising, organising and labelling their child pornography collections.
Prevalence of Paedophilia in Women
There are reports that women with strong sexual fantasies and urges towards children are paedophiles. Most sexual offenders against children are male; but the true number of female child molesters may be underrepresented, for reasons including a “societal tendency to dismiss the negative impact of sexual relationships between young boys and adult women and women’s greater access to very young children who cannot report their abuse,” among other explanations.
Sex Drive and Sex Fantasy in Paedophiles
Sex drive and sex fantasy are often confused in child molesters’ consideration as medically you can reduce the sex drive of a molester but sex fantasy is about creating a thought and to act quickly on that thought. A molester may enjoy his activities by torturing a child or any other way, than sex; reducing sex drive may not be a solution in most cases.
How to Save Your Child
The best way to avoid anything like this, parents should spend as much time as they can with their children, accompanying to games, practices, and rehearsals and spend time getting to know the adults in your child’s life. This will create a sense of comfort for the child to share daily activities. Children’s need involved parents to understand them and their surroundings as a present parent.
Extend your care through the hidden camera when you have small children and teenagers, a hidden camera or two about the house can be very useful. When children are small, it helps to ensure that they are protected from babysitters and nannies that might try to molest them. Many sitters and nannies feel that it is okay to abuse children to get them to behave.
The internet is a great tool for kids. They can use it to play games, read and learn. But the online world is also full of challenges. As soon as your kids start using a tablet, computer or mobile phone, teach them how to behave and stay safe online. Have regular and open discussions about their online activities and what sort of information they’re sharing about themselves, explain them the importance to protect their privacy and identity and what steps they can take to stay safe. Make them understand and to remember that, not everyone online is who they say they are.
Listen to what children say and acknowledge their feelings. This helps children to identify emotions and understand how they work. Being supported in this way helps children work out how to manage their emotions. Help children develop their skills for managing problems, by coming out of emotional barriers and how to safeguard themselves by asking help or to think in a different way that they could respond. Set limits on inappropriate behaviour by others so that children understand that inappropriate is not okay. Your child should know that you’re always willing to talk and they can tell you anything.
Good Touch, Bad Touch, and Secret Touch
Good touch, bad touch, secret touch and safe body rule methods are helpful in a way to make children understand “inappropriate touching”. A good touch can be explained as a way for people to show they care for each other and help each other. Examples you can give include hugging, holding hands, or a parent changing a baby’s diaper. A bad touch can be explained as the kind you don’t like and would want to stop right away, such as hitting, kicking or touching private parts. A secret touch can be explained as when an adult does something and then tells them to keep it as a secret, they should tell you immediately. Safe body rule teaches them it is not okay for anyone to touch their private parts, or what is covered by their swimsuits. Giving children specific examples like these will help them feel more empowered to act if necessary. It is easier for a child to follow a rule and they will more immediately recognise a “bad touch” if they have this guideline in mind.
Listen to Your Child
Inappropriate touching, especially by a trusted adult can be very confusing to a child. They are taught to trust adults and can feel conflicted, scared and confused when this trust is breached. Molester will attempt to step in as the “parent” figure for the child; parents need to tell their children that he or she has the right to say “no” to any “bad touch” by an adult. Constantly reinforce the idea that their body is their own and they can protect it and take care of it. Never dismiss a child’s claims because the adult in question is a valued member of society or appears incapable of such things.
A paedophile would defend a child for “love” but nobody has the right to take advantage of a child like that, a child growing under such things can never find trust or peace among other people as it wasn’t created and weakness to defend with all anger may become hatred towards one or all. Later in life, a child may have no sexual morals and probably become some sort of a sexual predator themselves.
Interact with Other Parents and Children
Involve other parents or family members who are at after-school events or gatherings. Discuss the subject with children, remain open to their thoughts, questions, and concern, and tell them that they should always speak up, ask questions and keep on talking until someone listens. The key to prevention is knowledge. That’s why it is so important for parents to talk with their children as early as four years of age, about inappropriate touching. And children even younger can begin to learn about their bodies.
For a safer tomorrow, talk to your children today.
Visuals from the author
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Rina is an accomplished graphic designer with a strong knowledge of Adobe software, visual communication, multimedia scripting, human-computer interface, and also the knowledge of 3D animation and production techniques. Creative, resourceful and flexible, able to adapt to changing priorities and maintain a positive attitude and strong work ethic. Passionate about art, not only practicing it but also spreading, appreciating, and learning it. She is currently situated in Singapore.