I’m a survivor – not a victim. For many years, I felt ashamed. I felt like a victim. I’ve come to the point in my life where I am no longer ashamed. I did not do anything wrong. I am strong. I am courageous. I am a survivor!
Pedophiles are very cunning, and very messed up. They meticulously manipulate their victims and the victim’s families. They have two sides – the one that looks angelic, sweet and “good with children,” and the other cold and calculating. Pedophiles gain your trust, then strike when you are most vulnerable. Then they threaten you and shame you into secrecy.
Sexual abuse profoundly affects a child’s self image, self esteem and trust. Unfortunately, it is not a rare occurence. Statistics say that as many as 1 in 4 girls will be sexually abused by the age of 18 – and 1 in 7 boys. The attackers are not usually strangers. Pedophiles are most often a person that the child knows and trusts.
There are some very important things that you must tell your children in order to protect them. There are signs that parents can look for in their children that will alert you to signs of abuse for early intervention. If you have been abused yourself, there is hope. Healing is not a fast fix, but something really worth the effort.
In my book, Hope for Healing from the Effects of Childhood Sexual Abuse, I share what I have learned from my own experience. I talk about what has helped me the most. If you or someone you love has been sexually abused, please check it out. If you want to better protect your children from predators, it can be very helpful.