Surpris­ing­ly, I’m almost fin­ished with a book I start­ed read­ing last night, Pro­tect­ing Your Chil­dren from Sex­u­al Preda­tors by Dr. Leigh Bak­er. I picked it up on a whim because it was on the new releas­es shelf at the library. Hon­est­ly, I don’t usu­al­ly get far in such books, because they start get­ting into mate­r­i­al that trig­gers flash­backs for me.

So far, this one has­n’t. There haven’t been any ter­ri­bly explic­it descrip­tions of molesta­tion, so I’m okay so far. And yes, I did know most of what’s in here, but I found some of the sta­tis­tics inter­est­ing. The step-by-step way the book fol­lows one preda­tor after anoth­er, point­ing out the warn­ing signs that should have tipped par­ents off to the dan­gers their chil­dren were in, is inter­est­ing. I think it could be very help­ful to many parents.

I’ve always been very pro­tec­tive of Katie, and very proac­tive in talk­ing with her and try­ing to edu­cate her in ways that might help her avoid preda­tors. Giv­ing her the real names for parts of her body, the whole “good touch/bad touch” thing, mak­ing sure that she under­stands that her body is HERS and nobody, no mat­ter who that per­son is, has any right to touch her with­out her con­sent. If she does­n’t want to hug Aunt Lucy, she does­n’t have to do it—and Aunt Lucy isn’t allowed to push. And, as she’s got­ten old­er, I’ve talked to her (in age-appro­pri­ate ways) about what hap­pened to me.

I was­n’t aware that chil­dren who have been abused in any way (sex­u­al­ly, phys­i­cal­ly, emo­tion­al­ly, ver­bal­ly) are much more like­ly to be abused again, even by com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent peo­ple in a total­ly dif­fer­ent set­ting. They’re more vul­ner­a­ble. The same goes for chil­dren who have expe­ri­enced the loss of a par­ent due to death or divorce, or have oth­er­wise been traumatized—predators seek out the most vul­ner­a­ble kids as their pre­ferred victims.

And, unfor­tu­nate­ly, being the child of an abuse sur­vivor great­ly increas­es the prob­a­bil­i­ty that a child will be the vic­tim of abuse. In some, but not all, cas­es, the abuser is the par­ent. But in more cas­es, the abuser is some­one who sees the dam­aged bound­aries of the abuse sur­vivor and takes advan­tage of them to gain access to the child. That’s def­i­nite­ly of direct inter­est to me as an abuse survivor.

I rec­om­mend this book to any par­ent, but espe­cial­ly those who are abuse sur­vivors or whose chil­dren may be espe­cial­ly vul­ner­a­ble due to oth­er cir­cum­stances. Teach­ers, Scout lead­ers, and oth­ers who work with chil­dren may also ben­e­fit from read­ing this book. is the author’s site.

Cur­rent Music: Putu­mayo World Play­ground CD
Cyn is Rick's wife, Katie's Mom, and Esther & Oliver's Mémé. She's also a professional geek, avid reader, fledgling coder, enthusiastic gamer (TTRPGs), occasional singer, and devoted stitcher.
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