98% , a goosebump raising statistic; one that should make you stop in your tracks and reconsider everything you thought you knew about sexual abuse against children. According to the article below by Amy Coyne Bredeson 98% of these crimes are committed by someone the child/family knows. These predators are out there smiling in our faces, offering condolences, helping with the yard work and misusing the trust of our children and ourselves. Each of us has the right and obligation to ask questions of the people we allow into our lives and into close proximity with our children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
We think nothing of swapping emails, addresses and phone numbers. We should also think nothing of asking for specific information before we swap our kids. Just because your son’s best friend’s uncle is the greatest guy on earth does not mean you should let him take off with your kid without first checking your facts and your gut instincts. Compile a list of things you should know about people before you let them take off with your kids and make this a regular part of your routine. Encourage your friends to do the same.
These people are good at what they do which is why we have to be aware, informed and ready to make that call to CPS. Your call can be anonymous (800) 422-4453
(The following is an excerpt, you can find the link to the full article at the end.)
Be your child’s advocate to prevent sexual abuse
BE YOUR CHILD’S ADVOCATE
So, how do we protect our children from the people we trust without living in constant fear? Most people are not sex offenders. Capps doesn’t advocate living in fear of every family member and friend, but she does advise that parents be proactive and educate their children about sexual abuse. If your child wants to hang out with his uncle, find out what they will be doing, where they’ll be going and whether anyone else will be around. “You’re not asking these questions because you think Uncle Joe is going to perpetrate on your child,” Capps said. “You just want to know the details. You are an interested parent. When an offender comes across a parent that asks questions, they know that their chances are less in terms of perpetrating.” She said to make sure you can drop by any time to see your child. If anyone says to call ahead, that is a red flag. There should always be an open-door policy, where parents are welcome at any time without any notice. “Don’t be afraid of confronting the issues,” Capps said. “Understand that the dangers are out there. Sometimes we’re so concerned about not offending people that we put our children as second priority.”
“This can happen to any child, including mine,” Capps said. “If you’re the kind of parent that sticks your head in the sand and says, ‘This can never happen to my child,’ then you are more at risk because then you’re less likely to be proactive. It’s just denial.”