How can I protect my child from sexual abuse?

Bonnie Lynn Wright, PhD
Geriatrics Nursing

Excellent question! Protecting our young children from bad experiences of any kind is critical to their future health and potential. In addition to the excellent answer already published by Ian Kerner, I would like to add two comments.

First, the most frequent sexual abusers of children are people known to them, like dad, mom, uncle, aunt, brother, sister, cousin. So pick out a 'trusted adult' carefully. Child abusers are not easily identified as such. If they were, children wouldn't have to protect themselves.

Second, it may not be possible to protect your child 100% and still give them the opportunities to explore their world enough to grow, flourish and be confident in themselves. There needs to be a balance between protection and positive social experiences. On occasion, this may lead to your protection being ineffective. No parent can be blamed for not protecting their child against absolutely every eventuality. Taking reasonable precautions is the best you can do to achieve that balance so your child can grow and not be stunted by unnecessary fear.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.