More Tips for Parents

  1. Safe touch and unsafe touch can be a difficult topic for adults to speak about with their kids. Introducing this concept at a young age helps children to develop protective capacities at an early age.
  2. The idea of “good touch/bad touch” may be confusing to children as all touch may be meant to feel good. Safe touch and unsafe touch are terms that are easier for children to grasp.
  3. Develop a code word or phrase with your child so they can communicate with you privately if they are feeling unsafe. This code word or phrase can be anything your child chooses and can remember. If your child tells you the code word you should remove him/her from the situation and ask them why they were feeling unsafe.
  4. Many victims report that they did not disclose the abuse to their parents because they did not think they would be believed. Let your children know you believe them right away.
  5. The vast majority of sexual abuse is not perpetrated by a stranger but by a trusted individual. Because of this a child often fears that he or she will not be believed. Show your child that you trust them through communication and support.
  6. If your child reports sexual abuse, tell them you believe them and notify the police and your local Children Youth and Families Department. After making the calls ask your child if there is anything you can do for them. Often times children will have a need that we failed to think of, like the replacement of clothing items or sheets. Sometimes they just ask for comfort. Do not destroy materials that police may need.
  7. Frequently check in with children about their safety. After a sleep over or other event ask your child “Did you feel safe?”.
  8. Remember, sexual abuse is never the victim’s fault.

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