What To Do If You Suspect Your Significant Other/Family Member of Sexually Abusing a Child

Here’s Part I of the promised follow-up post to help the many folks who have been emailing in and asking questions about what to do if you suspect someone close to you of molesting your child/a child. I did meet with a professional at a local office of Lutheran Community Services Northwest, as promised some months ago — LCS provides (among other things) advocacy and prevention for child sexual abuse.

I will be posting 31 times in the month of January, an average of a post per day, so this information will be broken up into short daily posts. If people generally find this shorter format better, then I’ll probably change over to that in time.

LCS has so much great material that you’ll find it worthwhile to look up a local office so you can visit the child sexual abuse page for that office. You’ll find lots of national resources listed on those pages.

Part I: Warning Signs of a Possible Child Sexual Abuser

  • Spends a lot of time with children outside of work.
  • Seems to know more about the “in” thing for kids than about adult trends.
  • Is someone whom other parents or children have made comments about to you. These comments will likely be nothing exact, but listen to them. “Mr. Smith is weird. I don’t like him,” said by a child, is something to listen to. “That piano teacher never allows parents to be present or even in the house during piano lessons, and my kids don’t want to go there” — said by another parent, that’s a big red flag. No, we don’t convict people on gossip or slander them. But absolutely do pay attention to comments, especially when you’re hearing a trend of comments about the same person.
  • Is someone children avoid and act uncomfortable around.
  • Is a relative whom family children don’t want to be left with. “Mom, I don’t want to go to Uncle George’s house” may just be a garden-variety complaint. So sit down with your child and ask questions. Better yet, make other arrangements. If your child’s caregiver is a family member whom your child cries, protests, complains or gets sick in order to avoid, that can be a big red flag too.
  • Subtly undermines your child’s trust in you and tries to transfer your child’s trust to himself/herself.
  • Regularly suggests trips alone with your child.

To be clear, none of these signs say a person is guilty of sexual abuse. But they are signs, and we as parents must pay attention.

There will be one more post today since it’s January 2 and I have a day of catching up to do, if I want to average a post every day for January. Hope you all had a good holiday season and that this new year will bring you good things.



2 Responses

  1. […] What To Do If You Suspect Your Significant Other/Family Member of Sexually Abusing a Child (rapeinfo.wordpress.com) Rate this: Share our journey:EmailFacebookPrintTwitterDiggStumbleUponLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  2. I write about overcoming child sexual abuse, answer tough questions from my readers as well. I appreciate the work you do. Stay connected! http://www.ressurrection.wordpress.com

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