Warning: This article contains explicit language and graphic details.
A predator by definition is an animal that hunts, kills and preys on others.
A paedophile is an adult who is sexually attracted to children, followed by degenerate, deviant, pervert displaying behaviour which deviates from what is acceptable, especially in sexual behaviour.
Not good news for our kids.
Degenerate sexual perverts are constantly on the hunt and preying on our children. It’s time to stop being worried about offending sensitivities and really say what’s happening to children who are victims of sexual assault.
Words like Paedophile, Molestation, Abuse, Interference, Sodomy and Rape seem to be used in the media without enough impact these days.
We need to say what is literally happening to the kids and their little bodies when they are assaulted. I’m going to be very plain because it’s very serious and these kids deserve that we sit up and take notice. It’s time to stop protecting easily offended adults with delicate eyes and ears and start really protecting our precious children. Their minds, bodies and lives depend on it.
7. Educate your kids.
Teaching our children the basics of what is appropriate touching in regards to their body is first up. This has nothing to do with them touching themselves. Boys and girls of any age have the right to explore their own body and shouldn’t be shamed into thinking it’s ‘dirty ‘ or ‘wrong,’ if you have them thinking that, then they’re already on their way to keeping secrets about touching.
Their body is their own space and they can say NO to being touched by someone else at any time, regardless of who that person is and their relationship to the child. That’s what they need to be thinking. That’s what they need to know.
The sad facts are though, many children don’t know that and they don’t have the opportunity to enforce their say on the low-life, piece of shit that is touching their little bodies for some unimaginable, sick, sexual pleasure.
Statistics state 7.7% of Australians have experienced childhood sexual abuse, and that figure just makes my head spin.
What’s even worse is that it is usually by someone they know.
A child who has been, or is being, secretly sexually assaulted may not fully comprehend what is happening to them but they will absolutely know it isn’t right and they will be scared. There is not a single child who comes into sexual contact with an adult penis or vagina (women can do these horrid things, too) that isn’t aware that it isn’t right.
Any little boy that has had adult hands on his penis, not for medical or teaching to clean reasons, but in a sexual manner will know it’s not normal. Nor will a little girl be in any way convinced in her heart that the pain of a penis or fingers in her vagina is okay.
Neither will accept the excruciating pain of being penetrated anally. It doesn’t matter what the disgusting bastard doing it tells them. That human stain will no doubt make the child feel ashamed and dirty and probably say things like ‘no one will believe you’ or ‘no one will like you’ or ‘if you tell anyone, your mum will die and go to hell’ — anything to keep the child from talking.
One thing all kids learn early is that they don’t like pain. Pain isn’t normal and they are usually quite good at voicing that opinion. If they have someone they trust that will believe them, that’s all they need to be saved from such atrocious acts.
6. Vigilance and Questions
You know your child and their temperaments. Even crazy mood swing toddlers are fairly easy to predict, really. It’s the big changes that should alert you to something being very wrong.
Regression in milestones like toilet training and learning, inability to concentrate on something they are usually absorbed in, self-harm (biting or scratching), excessive need to cling to you or general withdrawal from social activities are some signs of emotional disruption in children. It doesn’t absolutely mean that someone is hurting your baby, but maybe you should be asking, just in case.
The scenario is that you can ask questions of your friends and family, alerting them of your suspicions and concerns and yes, perhaps they will get upset and offended. Don’t worry about that.
If they are innocent of any wrongdoing, you can always apologise later and explain that you take your child’s safety very seriously and that you are doing the right thing for that child by asking questions of them. They’ll get over it. Tell them you’d expect the same from them if they had concerns or suspicions of their own.
If they are not innocent, in fact if you discover that they are a depraved arsehole and that you want to take to their throat with a pair of shears, then I would say upsetting and offending was well worth it. You could never apologise to your child enough if you didn’t do it. It’s part of your parental job. Get a good friend to back you up if you can’t confront the person alone.
5. Honesty and Open Discussion
I’ve started mentioning to my son in our bedtime chats that he can always tell me anything he wants to, a story or a secret that someone has told him, that I’ll keep it too. I also tell him that if he is ever scared or sad or hurt by someone, no matter who it is, that he can tell me and I would never be mad or upset with him. I don’t make a big deal out of it, but I say the very same thing each time, then I ask him, ‘Is there anything you want to tell me?’
One night, he nodded slowly and his bottom lip got wobbly. I got worried, very worried. Turns out he was sad that one of his toy motorbike handlebars had broken. Oh, thank god! But I still say the lines and I still ask the question anyway. I hope he feels he can be honest with me in the future if he needs my help.
A friend of mine, Trish, told me a story of honesty the other day when I mentioned I was writing this piece.
Trish’s grandmother was a victim of sexual assault as a young girl and had been very open about it with her daughter and then Trish herself. She often reminded her granddaughter of the dangers of child predators. Trish’s mum thought she was too young to know the story but as it turned out, her grandmother had impeccable timing.
When Trish was 12, her family went on holiday to a little town in NSW and stayed at the caravan park in walking distance from the surf beach. She was sitting on that beach one afternoon deciding whether to go for another surf when a man approached her. He was in his late 20’s, good looking, and nicely spoken. He said he was a masseuse and began massaging her shoulders, offering her a proper massage back at his place just over the sand dunes. He changed his massage style to groping her breasts. The girl was 12 for fuck’s sake! Who does that???
Anyway, Trish had her grandmother’s story in her mind and with a bit of quick-thinking agreed to go with him after she went back to her place to tell her mum she was going surfing. She said she’d meet him in half an hour. He agreed and left. I don’t need to explain the head-hunt that ensued after she ran back to the caravan park to relay what had just happened!
Build your relationship with your kids based on honesty right from the start. A family that is open and honest about the reality of child sexual assault, a child predator will fail in his attempt to attack and possibly take a life.
4. Switch from hugs to high-fives.
I don’t force my children to hug or kiss any adults. I may suggest it in regard to their little friends that visit, but if they don’t wish to, then okay. The less germs they share, the better anyway.
If an adult asks my child for a hug, it’s up to my child to decide. Depending on who it is, I usually interrupt and say ‘How about a high-five?’ Everyone is happy with a high-five.
If it’s Grandma looking for a cuddle and he doesn’t feel like it straight away, that awesome lady doesn’t force him. She waits until he’s settled in being around her and then he jumps up beside her for a cuddle. She’s pretty chuffed that he did it on his own terms.
Some well-meaning, loving grandparents get a little out-of-sorts when kids don’t feel like sharing affection immediately. You know the line ‘C’mon, give us a hug or Grannie will get sad’ Boom! Never let anyone make your child feel guilty for not giving them physical contact. Paedophiles often use the line ‘You don’t want to make me sad do you?’ *Vomit* I want to punch one now.
Remember Trish? She has told her own daughter, who is five, that she doesn’t have to smile at an adult if she doesn’t want to if she isn’t with her mummy. I think it’s fantastic — who cares if an adult gets offended because a child didn’t smile at them? If it really does matter to that adult, perhaps we should take a closer look at why?
Considering that 60 Minutes recently interviewed a decrepit, puke-inducing sleaze-bag – who was part of a group trying to get the legal age of consent reduced so that they could have sex with children – and openly admitted that if a young girl sat on his lap and got excited when he asked about her knickers, then he took that as consent. I think it’s brilliant that we aren’t encouraging our children to be openly affectionate with adults just because that adult wants it, even if it is just a smile!
3. Safety in Public Places
Public Places. We as parents all fear public places for safety reasons. Large crowds can be overwhelming and scary for kids and they easily get disorientated.
If you can wear your child in carrier, do so. It’s the safest place for them to be. If they are bigger, buckled into a pram, with the pram tethered to you, is great.
Little backpacks for the kids with the springy cord attaching them to you will keep them in range. Who gives a shit if someone takes offence to having your child on a cord?
Fill the trolley with the kids at the shops and get them to select and hold items for you. Don’t let the toddlers drag behind, no matter how tempting it is to stride ahead to encourage them to go faster, hold their hand and make a game of it, kids get abducted from right behind their parent’s backs.
Wear your ‘uniform.’ What you wear around your toddler normally is what you should wear when you are out in a crowded or open area. They’ll grab the nearest leg wearing the same colour pants they’re used to seeing on you (hopefully that leg belongs to someone nice) hopefully that leg is yours.
Keep your scent the same. Kids know how you usually smell and if someone wearing strong cologne or perfume different to yours picks them up, it’s one of the first senses to register alarm. They’ll get vocal quickly.
2. Stranger Danger 101
Don’t talk to strangers and don’t go anywhere with strangers.
Teach them to come and ask you first if someone asks them to go see their puppy. Kids tend to forget the rules when there’s something they like thrown in the mix. When the kids are online, it’s time to really throw down the rules for who they are interacting with at all times. Set up parent protection safety software and insist on sharing passwords.
1. Check the toilets.
Go with them to the toilets.
Oh my goodness, please don’t worry if there is some frigging ridiculous sign saying boys over 7 can’t use the ladies’ toilets. Of course they can! Better still, use the disabled loo altogether or at least check if it’s empty then wait right outside if your child is getting past the peeing-with-Mum stage.
I think public bathrooms have got to be one of the scariest places for a parent when it comes to a predator laying-in-wait. I often bend over and check for feet under the stalls if all the doors are shut when it’s deathly quiet in a toilet block, totally freaks me out and so it should.
We all remember when that horrible maggot Brett Peter Cowan was finally arrested for Daniel’s murder, that relief we felt (be honest, because we all feared it) when it came to light that Daniel hadn’t been strung up and tortured for months before he was killed. What did make us all grab our kids and promise not to let them out of our sight ever was the report of Cowan’s previous arrests, for which he had been released from prison, back onto the streets with our kids.
The heartbreaking report was of a little boy who went to use a public toilet, set upon by Cowan, raping him and leaving him for dead. The image of him with a screaming, crying child being held face-down, with his head bashed against the bricks while Cowan tore him to pieces, leaving him to bleed to death will forever be in my mind whenever my child or anyone’s child says they need to go to the toilet. Never let them go alone. Never.
Rehab or Rehash?
Is the $200 rehabilitation per scumbag offender per day really worth it?
Do they really change? Do they honestly feel guilty and sorry for the little bodies they have damaged, minds they have messed up and families that have suffered major fall-out because of the stress and inability to deal properly with the reality that has been forced upon them? I doubt it.
It is ridiculous that evil predators and paedophiles just like Cowan are re-released back into society, given the chance to attack again.
Another chance under a new name in a community filled with kids seems like quite possibly the stupidest thing ever thought of. Yeah sure, give them a piece of paper that states ‘Not within 200 metres of any child’ and that should hold them back. These disgusting pigs are addicts and they’ll always be back for more, sooner or later. I reckon they forfeited their chance at freedom when they forced their dirty, wretched dick into a child. I’m angry about this situation and I hope more parents find themselves angry too. Our kids deserve a zero-tolerance attitude to child sex offenders and their release from prison.
Here’s yet another social experiment that makes us ask: How well do we know our kids?
How To Get Help
We have in Australia a number of hotlines, helplines and organisations who specialise in the protection, support and counselling of both victims and their families. Here are some of them:
National freecall telephone crisis support and information (1800 BRAVE1) 1800 272 831
8am-8pm, Monday to Friday or contact them online.
Sexual Assault Disclosure Scheme (you can report anonymously)
1800 688 009 (freecall)
Professional Support Line – 1300 657 380 from 9am-5pm
It has set up website with listings of services for each state.