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How to be alert on child abuse and help in the best way you can
There are four main categories of child abuse: neglect, physical abuse, psychological or emotional abuse, and sexual abuse. A child could be subjected to more than one of these.
As adults, it takes a long time to get past the doubts and nail something down as abuse. It is definitely more difficult for a child (a minor; that is anyone under the age of eighteen). When a child does realize it is abuse, he/she may muster the courage to talk to someone about it – in most cases, this is a parent. What if the child has approached his/her parent(s), and been dismissed? This could happen if the parents are not aware, or do not believe the child. It could also happen in the following scenarios –
First the bad news – These circumstances are not as remote as one would think. It could even be happening in your neighbourhood. The good news is you and I maybe able do something about it.
When is intervention warranted?
A child in any of the above scenarios needs help. How would you know?
Who can help?
How can I help?
At the same time, be very careful not to do anything that could leave you open to allegations.
We need to bear in mind that not all children are as fortunate as our own.
If you would like to help, be watchful. Your love could save a child from growing into an adult with low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, personality disorders… and may even be what stops him/her from turning into an abuser.
Arundhati Venkatesh is a children's books author. Her books have won several awards, including the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award 2015 for India, Middle East and Asia for read more...
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Before expecting the daughter in law to love, respect and accept the new family, it is only fair that the family demonstrates all of these first.
If you are a married Indian woman, one of the first words you hear from your in laws is that you are now a daughter of the house. How true is that statement though? Are daughters in law really treated as daughters or is this only lip service?
A friend recently confided how hurt she felt when she wanted to visit her in-laws along with her husband but was told not to, because the in-laws wanted time alone with their son. Naturally, she was taken aback since she had always been fed this trope – that she was the daughter, not the daughter in law. Why then this sudden keeping at arm’s distance? Would a son in law ever be told not to accompany his wife on her visit to her parents because they wanted quality time with their daughter? That is unimaginable in a patriarchal society.
It is ok to want time alone with the married offspring but how does that meld into the Indian family system, where independent choices are less important than the whole family coming together?
My husband returns home tired after working & travelling. I, like other working women, return home refreshed after enjoying full day at office!
I am a working woman and mother of a 2 year old daughter. People say I am irresponsible and lazy because I have a house-help.
Yes, I’m irresponsible and don’t have any work. Except checking what groceries needs to be refilled and ordering them for home delivery, washing my and my husband’s clothes, drying and folding them, getting the work-wear clothes ironed, keeping clothes in place, cleaning bathrooms and toilets, changing bedsheets, dusting windows occasionally, hand washing my daughter’s soiled clothes in hot water, bathing my daughter twice, feeding my daughter breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Rest other work like cooking and house cleaning done by the house-help and my husband takes care of getting fruits and vegetables from the market every week. So I don’t have any work except those few mentioned earlier.
Why do children stay silent about sexual abuse? A post for the UNICEF Red Siren campaign to #EndViolence against girls
Child Sexual Abuse – it happens to children of both sexes. But in the form of rape, it happens more to girls (especially if we also count child marriages, and marital rape). Little girls are being raped – a four year old, a nine year old. It doesn’t bear thinking about. In fact it’s so hard to deal with, we brush it aside, try and forget it, believe it’s happening to others. People of a different social strata, different community, maybe even a different religion. Not us. This helps us to distance from it. Of course, rapes of little girls don’t only happen in slums and we know that.
But I don’t want to write about the worst form of sexual abuse of little girls. Rape is violent and dramatic and makes headlines. Sexual abuse isn’t only about rape. Sexual abuse is far more insidious, supposedly mild and harmless compared to rape. But is it?
Survivors of sexual abuse suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) until and unless they are treated for the sexual abuse. And usually even after that, although they learn to handle it and to use the pain as a learning. But it can strike anytime and emotional triggers are many. (more…)
The recent sexual assault on a 6 year old child in Bangalore raises again the need for the Good Touch, Bad Touch talk.
The recent sexual assault on a 6 year old child in Bangalore, while in school, has created shock waves among parents, and raises again the need for the Good Touch, Bad Touch talk.
I am so furious, ashamed, scared and miserable while writing this post after reading about a 6 year old child being raped in Bangalore. The worst part is that it happened in school!
I am furious because I can’t do anything, I am ashamed because I belong to a nation that boasts about a fake culture, I am scared because I am a mother to a daughter, I am miserable because it’s the 21st century and ‘Woman’ is still insecure. It’s beyond my imagination to think about the pain, frustration and helplessness the little one and her family must be going through.