Child Holding head in their hands

Link – Childhood Sexual Abuse: ‘Preparation and Response’ Instead of ‘Prevention’

Liz Briggs thinks the way we approach child sexual abuse is broken. I tend to agree, to a degree. Yes, it’s important that we have children who understand who they can turn to and get support if they find themselves in a situation where someone has tried to touch them. Yes it’s important that we maintain open dialog with kids. Yes, teaching kids that strangers are dangerous, but other adults should be trusted and not questioned is a bad idea.

Clearly, there are too many kids out there being abused, who do not feel like they can tell anyone, or have tried to tell and not been believed. If we can’t fix that, teaching them prevention will never get us where we want to go.

“There is a basic need in our society to change the approach to how we prepare our children for possible sexual assault or abuse. It is wrong for us to teach “sexual assault prevention” to young children, perpetuating this awful suggestion that a small child has ANY capacity whatsoever to prevent his/her own abuse. Instead we need to teach healthy attitudes toward sexuality, and to prepare our children for interactions with “tricky people.””

What do you think of her ideas?

Photo by Tjook

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