Sexual Abuse – A WakeUp Call for Parents!


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Omar Mateen Allahwala

Omer Mateen Allahwala is a businessman and a board member of “Orange Tree Foundation”.

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This piece of information is specially for those who send their children to schools with drivers and servants; those who send their children alone to Madrassas and tuitions; those who leave their children behind alone with servants and teachers; and those who let their adult friends play with their children alone; or at times, even let them take them for a drive. Please note- abuse is not restricted to girls only.

Sexual Harassment is an epidemic that is still widely unattended. It is committed every day in several places of Pakistan. Even the Western world is not spared of this heinous act.

Every two hours somewhere a child is sexually molested in Pakistan. This statistic is based on the few cases that are actually reported by hospitals. These cases are so disturbing that none could be penned here. Most of the cases go on unreported.

When that force is immediate, of short duration, or infrequent, it is called “Sexual Assault”. The offender is referred to as “Sexual Abuser” or “Molester”. Molestation is defined as the touching or fondling of the private parts of a child; or asking a child to touch or fondle an adult’s private parts.

A child is “Sexually Abused” when they are forced, or persuaded to take part in sexual activities.This doesn’t have to be physical contact, and it can happen online- which is extremely common these days. Most of the time, the child won’t even understand that he/she is being abused.They may not even understand that it’s wrong. Most of the victims are very young, and cannot understand, or even remember in the future.

Mostly, abuse begins with innocent physical contact. A needy adult then makes this a routine. Once a routine is developed, it is not uncommon to progress to intercourse. The most common perpetrators of sexual abuse are: a family member, a servant, or a close friend of the family.

Sexual abuse by a stranger is quite uncommon; it commonly comes to light when the child discloses the incident of sexual contact to a trusted adult.

Historically, a child’s word was not taken seriously. Mostly, children realize when they become mature enough, that they have been abused.

The molesters have no age barriers. They are found in all age brackets. The most innocent looking weak elderly can be a horrifying molester. It can be termed as a psychological abnormality. We must educate ourselves and our children about sexual abuse. This topic is not discussed enough; hence, millions of innocent children fall prey to sexual harassment every single day. It is our responsibility to protect our children.There is a scary amount of data which could be shared, but it may disturb many people, especially children. Every now and then, we come across soul wrenching events of sexual abuse that involve children’s own family members. After hearing such incidents, one starts to wonder who could be trusted. Most common events take place with teachers, uncles, servants and drivers.

Children must not be left alone with servants, uncles and male teachers. Their clothes must not be too revealing or too tight.

Frustrated and needy people are everywhere; there is no need to dress up children in enticing outfits. If one wants to learn how common sexual abuse is, a visit to a government hospital emergency ward, and a short discussion with the staff may suffice the need. People couldn’t sleep for days after hearing the horrible stories.

It is difficult to manage keeping an eye on children at all times, but parenting is a challenging job. Parents need to make sure their children are properly protected. They need to make smart and careful decisions. It is a known fact that children who experience the trauma of sexual abuse are scarred for life. Parent’s responsibility is to protect their children from all potential threats.

 

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