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Madhuri Banerjee
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 13 : 44

How grave a matter is child sexual abuse


Child sexual abuse is a grave matter. Being a parent myself, I find that my one mission in life is to save my child from pedophiles. While all parents understand this, they may not know what to do about it. Aamir Khan the actor had an episode on his new show Satyamev Jayate on this subject. With this telecast many parents and children became aware of the dangers of child sexual abuse. Hopefully a law will come out to punish the perpetrators and parents will become more protective.

I can sincerely pray that no child is subjected to such torture ever. In the meantime, all I can do is make a video to support the cause, spread awareness and speak as much as I can to all parents about it.

(It was done on skype so please excuse any bad lighting.)

There is far more than I can comprehend about this subject but the basics are the following:

Things that parents can do:

1.Be vigilant. Try not to leave kids alone with 1 person, no matter how close he or she is. Not at home, not on a vacation. Never.

2.Do not insist that the kid hugs or kisses an elder even if the elder has given a present to the child. A simple "Thank you" from the child should suffice as good manners.

3.Explain to the child that while it's ok to respect elders, it needs to be earned. They don't need to "obey" everyone or "be nice" to people.

4.Explain the concept of strangers. They are not allowed to talk to or take candy from strangers. They are not allowed to go off without telling you.

5.Trust the child. They came from you. They have your genes. You need to love them first.

6.Explain to them about the bad touch and bad looks from people. Do this every few months. Teach the names of the body parts.

7.Teach them to defend themselves. Scream if scared. Hit if angry. It's ok to do so on an elder who has touched the body part.

8.Create a bond. Be their friend. Tell them to tell you everything. Talk to them on a daily basis about people they like and don't like. Ask them why.

9.Check the school, play ground and day care regularly. Get to know the people interacting with your child. Don't blindly trust anyone.

10.If a child is in his pre-teens or teens, explain the concept of rape, date drugs, HIV, pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Tell him not to be fooled by anyone's advances.

11.Do not post pictures on any social networking sites of your child with no clothes on. The internet is a dangerous place and the first place predators look. Do not put location next to the picture either!

12.If such a thing has occurred, do not panic. Eliminate the person from both your lives immediately. Do this in front of the child if possible. Say to the person, "You are no longer welcome here. Come near my child again and I will file a report against you." Then take the child to a counselor and go for collective sessions.

13.Don't leave the child alone to manage or handle it by herself/himself. Make sure you're there most of the time for them.

14.Give him time to heal. Give yourself time as well. Don't beat yourself as well. Be proactive in solving it.

15.Make sure you give enough love to the child and not make them feel bad if anything has happened. Remind them that they're "not bad people" and it's not their fault. Be supportive.


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More about Madhuri Banerjee

Madhuri is a comprehensive media professional, having worked in all forms of the visual medium -as a Senior Producer with Zoom TV, advertisements with White Light Motion Pictures, Director in her own production house Gray Matter Solution, documentaries as a freelancer with PSBT and commercial Bollywood films as an Assistant Director. She has worked with stalwarts like Subhash Ghai, Kaizad Gustad and Rohan Sippy, and music director Anu Malik. Madhuri graduated from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi with a Bachelor’s degree in English Honours. She continued her education acquiring a Master’s in Mass Communication and Films from Jamia Millia Islamia. Her thesis film, 'Between Dualities' won her the National Award for best documentary on women’s issues. She is an avid reader, world traveler, and film watcher. She gives relationship advice in a column called Love Guru in the Asian Age/Deccan Chronicle every alternate Monday. She has currently finished working on a commercial film script. Her debut book 'Losing My Virginity And Other Dumb Ideas' sold over 40,000 copies in the first year of its release and was on the best seller list for over 10 weeks. Her second novel 'Mistakes Like Love And Sex' is a sequel and was released in November 2012. It’s already on the best seller list. She has her own website www.madhuribanerjee.com is active on Twitter as @Madhuribanerjee, has a Facebook page for Losing My Virginity and Other Dumb Ideas, writes for the CNN-IBN blog called Chastity Belt and has her own blog www.madhuribanerjee.blogspot.com which already has over 1,44,000 views.