CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION PARENT RESOURCES
Warning Signs of Sexual Abuse in Children:
- Anxiety, chronic stomach pain, or headaches may occur.
- "Too perfect" behavior, withdrawal, fear, depression, unexplained anger, and rebellion.
- Nightmares, bed-wetting, falling grades, cruelty to animals, bullying, being bullied, bullying, fire setting, runaway, and self-harm of any kind.
- Sexual behavior and language that are not age-appropriate.
- Use of alcohol or drugs at an early age.
- Could have bruising, bleeding, redness and bumps, or scabs around the mouth, genitals, or anus. Children may complain of pain when they use the restroom or may be incontinent as a result of urinary tract infections, STDs, and abnormal discharges.
How to Report Abuse:
All residents of the State of Oklahoma are considered Mandated Reporters by law, meaning that if you have any suspicion of abuse of any nature to a child, it is your responsibility to report it immediately. You do not need proof that abuse if occurring to make a report, only reasonable suspicion. Reporting child sexual abuse is key in preventing and intervening in abuse, potentially years of trauma for a child or even saving their lives.
If a child discloses abuse to you:
- Give attention, compassion, and belief.
- Listen calmly and openly.
- Don't fill in gaps.
- Don't ask leading questions about the details.
- Ask open-ended questions like, "What happened next?"
- Don't overreact.
- Say, "I believe you" and "what happened is not your fault."
The Facts about Child Sexual Abuse
- 1 in 10 children are sexually abused before their 18th birthday.
- 42 million adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse are walking among us.
- In 90% of cases, the child knows and trusts the abuser.
- Children are victims of 70% of all reported sexual assaults.
- 40% of sexual abused children are abused by an older or larger child.
- Survivors of child sexual abuse have a higher likelihood of psychological disorders, excessive drug and alcohol use, eating disorders, suicidal tendencies, and violence.
YOU CAN JOIN THE MOVEMENT. PROTECT A CHILD. Stewards of Children® is a prevention training program that teaches adults how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. The program is designed for individuals concerned about the safety of children, as well as organizations that serve youth. The online version allows individuals to take the training at any time or place, at a pace of their choosing.
The Stewards Of Children Online Training Will Provide You With The Following:
- Increased awareness of the prevalence, consequences and circumstances of child sexual abuse.
- New skills for adults to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.
- Proactive, positive change to organizational policies and procedures.
- Individual commitment to action via a personal prevention plan.
5 Steps to Protecting Our Children
The Stewards of Children® online training, will teach you five steps to help you become a protector of children’s safety, through guidance on:
STEP 1: LEARN THE FACTS
Over 90% of sexually abused children are abused by someone known by the child or family.
STEP 2: MINIMIZE OPPORTUNITY
If you eliminate or reduce potential for children to be in isolated, one-on-one situations with adults or other youth, you dramatically reduce risk.
STEP 3: TALK ABOUT IT
Children often keep abuse a secret, but barriers can be broken down by talking openly about topics like body safety, sex, and boundaries.
STEP 4: RECOGNIZE THE SIGNS
Emotional or behavioral signals are more common, and may range from “too perfect behavior” to anger and rebellion. The most common symptoms of child sexual abuse are emotional or behavioral changes.
STEP 5: REACT RESPONSIBLY
Disclosure, discovery, and suspicions of sexual abuse provide opportunities to intervene on behalf of a child.