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“WHEN presented with the question, ‘what would you do if you find out that your spouse or child’s father has molested your child?’, many mothers’ instinctive response is ‘I would kill him!’ — instinctive because a protective mother hen can’t fathom the loss of her child’s innocence in that brutish way. But in reality, and when faced with the actual situation, this promise is rarely acted out. In fact, some mothers live in silent denial, others resent the child, some choose to blame the child, and depending on the age, the mother may even put the child out of the household. Still others will simply accept it.”

“She told me not to tell anyone and that she felt it was her fault because she did not get up when he was doing it, even though she told him to stop and turned away. That broke my heart. Here she was, struggling with the guilt and not talking to anyone about it.”

“Daddy touch me there”  from the Jamaican Observer is one of the best and most powerful articles I’ve read from across the region addressing child sexual abuse, particularly by a parent or someone in a parent role. More information is needed-more interventions-to encourage children to speak up about being abused. We need to let our children know that it’s safe to speak up, and that doing so is best for everyone. My main critique of the article is that the abuse survivors were mainly females. As much as there is stigma about child sexual abuse among out islands, there is much more concerning the abuse of young boys. Let’s encourage more reporters to focus on this area and to write the stories of young people–male or female–who oftentimes lack a voice.

The full article is available at : http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/magazines/allwoman/Daddy-touched-me-there_9046634#ixzz1RNagXKL8

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