Education

Adverse childhood experiences (A.C.E.'s) are linked to every major chronic illness and social problem that our society faces.  http://www.acestudy.org/  A.C.E.'s can interrupt important developmental processes and keep children from growing and developing emotionally during this particularly vulnerable time.  One of the most devastating A.C.E. is that of child sexual abuse.  Child sexual abuse robs children of their childhood and creates a loss of trust, feelings of guilt and self-abusive behavior.  It can often lead to depression, anti-social behavior and other serious emotional problems.  Additionally, these children are more likely to experience low academic achievement and be arrested as juveniles.

 

The Numbers are Startling:

  • 1 out of 4 girls and 1 out of 6 boys admit being sexually molested before the age of 18.
  • 1 in 10 child victims never tell anyone.
  • When asked, 80% of victims will deny abuse or hesitate to disclose.
  • 90% of sexual abuse is perpetrated by someone that is known and trusted by the child and his or her family.

We have taught them to run away and tell someone when someone wants to do bad things to them.
We have taught them to be of certain situations.
We have taught ourselves how to deal with children and teens disclosing abuse.
As parents, grandparents, guardians and teachers, we need to keep doing that.

But it is not enough.

Alert Adults s devoted to eliminating child sexual abuse through adult prevention education.  We facilitate innovative child sexual abuse prevention programs that train adults to identify and intervene in potentially risky situations before abuse occurs. We believe that treatment is vital.  Reporting is critical.  However, PREVENTION is the only "cure."

It's time to put the job of protecting children in the hands of the adults who love them.

Disclosures

No one ever wants to have to hear a child disclose an instance of child sexual abuse, but when it occurs, it is important to know what to do.

First
    Protect the child from further abuse
Second
    Stop the perpetrator from abusing this or any other child
Third
    Address the child's physical, emotional, and psychological need, and the harm done to the family and, when applicable, the community

Three critical steps, but there is more to it

What else should I do?

  • Don't panic or express shock
  • Find a private place to listen -Do not question the child about what happened. Just listen to what the child has to say
  • Express your belief in the child
  • Let children know they are not at fault
  • Assure the child that telling was the right thing to do
  • Report the abuse and address the immediate needs of the child

REMEMBER THAT YOUR JOB IS TO LISTEN AND SUPPORT THE CHILD - NOT INVESTIGATE THE ALLEGATIONS.

  • Tell the child what will happen next
  • Don't be surprised if your child reports to someone outside the family