How To Spot Sexual Predators?

As parents, we need to look for proactive measures that will prevent sexual predators from harming our kids. According to Lynda Savage, LMFT, “A sexual predator is not only the one who acts out sexual deeds. It is also the one who allows sexual stimulation to occupy thoughts and speech. Males and females can and do perpetrate these thoughts if not actions, which appear innocent toward each other.” There’s a need to educate ourselves on identifying the common characteristics of these offenders. We need to use it to secure our family from the danger that these individuals may bring. And because no technological advancement can separate these sexual predators from ordinary people, we need to know what makes them different from the others. If we want to keep them away from having involvement in our lives, we should learn what to look for so we can act accordingly.

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Characteristics Of A Sexual Offender

  • Sexual predators engage in repeated unnoticeable acts of physical contact with adolescents or young adults. Some examples of their actions are tickling or roughhousing. Though some people consider it normal at some point, it triggers a desire for these individuals.
  • An awkward physical contact with individuals that tend to go against their will becomes exciting for sexual predators. Inflicting humiliation and pain reflects their nonempathetic characteristic. They get excited by the idea of challenge in sexual contact.
  • Watching or participating acts of violence on a regular basis is one of sexual predators’ habit. They also like to watch others engaging in sexual activities secretly. Sometimes, even watching someone undressing becomes exhilarating for them as well. This practice is called voyeurism.
  • Sexual offenders take zero precautions when addressing public areas. Meaning, most of them enjoy being seen by others as they attempt to endanger or molest someone. They also find satisfaction in seeing images of people’s private parts. They find stimulation on the visual representation that somehow keeps them aroused.
  • These individuals lack empathy for their victims. Sexual offenders don’t see remorse on their actions and consider the practice valid for specific reasons. These include telling the victim they deserve the sexual abuse due to wearing revealing clothes.
  • Sexual offenders find happiness discussing sexual activities. They see it amusing when someone is sharing stories about sexual interactions.
  • Most sexual predators are likable. That is what makes them good at hiding their acts for so long. They are good at lying, manipulating, and convincing young adults to become part of their lives. According to Kathryn Brohl, LMFT, “The majority of sexual offenders know their victims.”
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Sexual predators know what they are doing because they have a focused mindset. They practice the art of grooming where they gain the trust of their victim or his or her family to be able to start a sexual relationship in secret. It goes to a process that allows predators to fulfill their devious desires.

Methods Used By Sexual Predators

Identifying Their Victims – Sexual predators pick their targets based on the preferred age and looks. Sometimes, it could be the victim’s vulnerable traits. In many instances, the fulfillment of the act is due to parents not being around, the target has low self-esteem, or just trying to use friendship as a stepping stone for building up a sexual relationship. There are many different ways and reasons to identify their victims.

Gaining Access And Trust – It is the most crucial part of identifying a sexual predator because no one can see it coming. Since people get easily attached to someone who is helpful and likable, they tend to give out trust. However, the problem lies in the process of how sex offenders see the advantage of the situation. They will try to do small things that seem typical in people’s relationship with others in a way to gain trust. It is not something that victims or their family notice right away.

Becoming An Important Person – One of the most convincing methods of sexual predators is being a significant person in the family. It makes them hold the situation in their hands because their participation becomes needed. They use it as an advantage not to lose sight of their target and genuinely create a bond to keep them around.

Start Isolating The Target – Most sexual predators invest in a tight relationship with the victims and their families. However, when it is the time to engage in the sexual act, they begin to isolate their target. Meaning, they find ways to set up scenarios where they can remove the people away from the child’s parameter. It is the most advantageous state because victims are vulnerable in that particular situation.

The Infliction Of Fear – Sexual offenders inflict fear on their victims. Sometimes, they threatened to harm young adults or maybe someone they love. It becomes a perfect way to control the target so they won’t be able to seek for help.

Sexualizing The Relationship – Even the smallest thing that contains any physical contact brings gratification to most sexual offenders. These include putting an arm in the victim’s shoulder, rubbing someone on their back, placing a hand on the knee, and linking arms while walking together. From there, the feeling grows and becomes a sexual desire that predators take that way. According to Licia Freeman, LMFT, “A sex predator can be a sex addict, but it does not mean that every sex predator is a sex addict.”

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It’s true that not everyone will go through the same stages of these acts because everyone’s process is going to be different with everybody else. However, as parents, we need to stay alert and cautious for our family and children’s sake.

How To Help An Abused Child

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There are several forms of abuse that a child may be subjected to. According to licensed psychotherapist Annie Wright, “Any kind of treatment that intentionally or unintentionally undermines and puts at risk a child’s health, welfare, or dignity is, in my professional opinion, a kind of abuse.” Each type may have a particular effect on the mental health of the person involved, which is why it is essential to be careful when dealing with a child who has a history of abuse. You must be mindful of all your actions and words so that you can avoid triggering some factors that can worsen the situation of the abused individual. At the same time, you must know how to act correctly to ensure that you can find ways on how to help the said unwilling victim.

In this article, we are going to provide you with a list of ideas on how to help a young individual who has already become a victim of emotional, physical or psychological abuse. Here are the guidelines to observe:

Be Sensitive

As early as this point, it is essential to emphasize the fact that you a child abuse victim can be easily offended, which is why you need to be extra careful in what you will do and say. Be sensitive enough to remember the child’s needs so that you can have a better understanding of what is happening. Never make any assumptions because you might get it wrong.

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Offer Guidance And Assistance

Make sure to assure the child that you are willing to support him in any way possible. Let him know that you are available for any discussion or conversation. Make the individual feel that you do not have any reservations or ill motives in extending your help. Remember that this person may not be trusted, which is you must exert more efforts to make them believe that you are a right person.

Avoid Asking Too Many Questions

Take note that the said child may suffer from a traumatic experience because of the abuse that he received from his parents or others. For this reason, it is imperative on your part to be patient in waiting for him to open up. Do not rush the child as it can trigger some hurtful memories to come back in his life. Never force him to speak up as it may lead to some other serious troubles. According to Fran Walfish, PsyD, “Kids who’ve been abused may become mute, or refuse to speak.”

Call Authorities

According to Catherine McCall, LMFT, “Taking that next step – reporting the abuse – frightens many people.” If you think that the guardians or the parents of a child continue to abuse him in any manner, be sure to get in touch with the proper authorities as soon as possible. Take note that you need to act fast to prevent any aggression or threat that may come from the abusive individual. If possible, you can already interfere as long as it is for the promotion of the welfare or well-being of the child.

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Conclusion

Dealing with an individual who has a rough past can be challenging. You need to take into consideration several factors to ensure that you will not say or do anything that can offend the child involved. Feel free to get help from some adults who might be willing to support an individual with no parents or relatives.

Keeping The Faith According To A Therapist

It may be a shock to many, but yes, sexual exploitation by church workers actually happens. According to Linda K. Oxford, LMFT, “Many churches naively assume that their church is a safe haven where abuse and exploitation of vulnerable others would never take place. Until it does.” No matter how hard the church covers up for the wrong acts of their priests, ministers, and other workers, the truth will still find its way out.

There are many issues nowadays about church workers who sexually abuse kids, and often the abuse takes place right in the house of worship. “There are a lot of myths and misperceptions right now,” says Bill Mochon, PsyD, a Los Angeles psychologist who facilitates group sessions for priests. There has been news about these things in the past, but after a day or two, the reports would die down.

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But for a person who has heard it, and somehow believed it, how can he listen to a pastor or a parish priest’s message after hearing news about their dreadful sexual corruption of children? Plus the sad truth is that the higher-ups are covering these issues so not to ruin the image of the church.

This sexually abusing of children happens not only in the U.S. but around the world.  For some, justice has been delivered, but for many, they are still at loss as to what will happen to their cases.  What morality are we going to teach our kids especially those who are victims of abuse if justice will not be served to them?  Continue reading Keeping The Faith According To A Therapist

How To Respond When A Sexually Abused Child Opens Up To You According To Psychiatrist

According to Melissa Goldberg, PsyD, “Recent reports highlight the alarming prevalence of child sexual abuse.” It is hard for a sexually abused child to open up about her bad experience, whether to her parent, her sibling, or her friend.   There is fear that no one will believe her, especially if the perpetrator is manipulating her. According to Jessica Lang, LMFT, “The #1 reason children do not disclose ongoing sexual abuse is fear! They are afraid they wont be believed, that they or you will be harmed, or they will be blamed for the abuse.” Sometimes, she doesn’t want to create misunderstanding if the person who did the wrong thing to her is close to the family or a member of the family.

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It takes a lot of courage on the child’s part before she can really say something or even give a hint that something bad had happened or keeps on happening to her.

So as a parent, a grandparent, an aunt, or an older adult whom a child trusts enough to make her open up to you, you must be aware of how you should react.  Of course, it would be a shock, but still, you have to maintain your composure not to look judgmental, instead talk calmly and encouragingly so that she will be encouraged to speak with you more about it.  According to Fran Walfish, PsyD, “Kids who’ve been abused may become mute, or refuse to speak.” Continue reading How To Respond When A Sexually Abused Child Opens Up To You According To Psychiatrist

How Online Therapy Helps Heal The Pain Of Verbal Abuse In Children

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There are quite a number of passages in the Bible about how a parent-child relationship should be.  One is that a child should obey his parents for it is the right thing to do.  In fact, this is the first commandment with a promise added to it, a promise of a prosperous and long life.

But the passage doesn’t end there. In fact as I said earlier, it’s a relationship between the parents and child, so there’s also something for the parent to take note of, that they should not provoke their children.  Parents should avoid doing things that can make their children angry or provoke them to do more wrong deeds. Continue reading How Online Therapy Helps Heal The Pain Of Verbal Abuse In Children

Things You Need to Do Before Deciding To Leave Your Child In Daycare

Parents are willing to do and sacrifice just about anything to ensure the wellness of their children. They work hard to be able to secure their children’s future. But not all parents have the luxury of time to spend with their children. Some need to be elsewhere to make a living.

Continue reading Things You Need to Do Before Deciding To Leave Your Child In Daycare

Is Someone Grooming My Child Online?

The 3 Important Concerns Parents Have About Online Grooming Addressed

For every bright side of a particular innovation, there’s always a dark side. The internet may be a vast source of almost anything; it can also be a dangerous place for our children. According to Michael Nuccitelli, PsyD, “With the advent of the Internet, a new environment now exists for the cyberstalkers and online predator.” In it, people can assume fake names, put in pictures in their profiles that are not theirs and adopt counterfeit personalities all to victimize someone, most likely children. Assuming a false identity online with the intent of sexually abusing a minor is commonly known as online grooming.

Continue reading Is Someone Grooming My Child Online?

Parents Talk: 4 Things You Can Do To Protect Your Child From Sexual Abuse

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Sexual abuse…it’s something we dread and hope will never happen to our children.  

However, if we follow the current news events, politicians, Hollywood VIPs, even priests, and teachers – people that we think we could trust with our kids – are guilty of being child abuse perpetrators.  Continue reading Parents Talk: 4 Things You Can Do To Protect Your Child From Sexual Abuse

5 Child Abuse Myths Debunked

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Marion and his younger sister came from a well-to-do family. Marion had the typical American life complete with the white picket fence and the dog. Both his parents worked in the local government, attended church and were very involved in their children’s school. So it was a shock to everyone in the community when news about Marion’s abuse came out. Turned out, the father had a mean streak and would take it on his children.

Continue reading 5 Child Abuse Myths Debunked

Is Bullying A Form Of Abuse? YES!

And Is More Detrimental To Mental Health

A good-looking 16-year-old gifted with a beautiful voice and athletic skills, Brianne’s future looked as bright as the sun. But some of the girls in her school think otherwise. Spurned by jealousy of her popularity, they antagonized her by leaving mean notes inside her locker and nastily telling her she had no future.

Continue reading Is Bullying A Form Of Abuse? YES!