Children’s day is here again. May 27th, a day set aside to celebrate our leaders of tomorrow, our mini-mes, our bundles of joy. The importance of these little ones cannot be overemphasized – they are the major reasons we strive to be responsible so they can be well catered for.
Their safety and security? that is something we cannot toy with. Parents can go to any length to ensure their kids are safe and out of harm’s way. But the current state of our nation is somewhat threatening to these little ones.
The rate of violence, especially sexual abuse against kids is now at an alarming rate in the country. Kids from all corners of the country (both gender), irrespective of their parents’ social status are being abused daily. A survey carried out by UNICEF in 2015 disclosed that four in 10 girls and one in 10 boys in Nigeria will experience some sort of sexual violence before the age of 18. (Source: https://leadership.ng/2017/06/03/rising-tide-child-sexual-abuse-experts-analysis/)
According to Cece Yara Foundation, 88% of child sexual abuse victims know the abuser, as they are either family members, neighbors or caregivers. ( Source: https://www.ceceyara.org/images/articles/CECE-YARA-STATISTICS-PERPETRATOR.pdf
This is a sad situation as most of the kids are often threatened by these people and are afraid to speak up. Asides from the threats from their abusers, most of these victims do not know how to open up to their parents because often times, they do not know how to begin a conversation related to sexual topics.
This is a wake-up call to parents to begin sexual education as early as they can because pedophiles are no respecters of the age of their victims. Teaching them sex education should also be accompanied by teaching them how to resist these predators in the best ways possible.
Kids born in this century don’t stay naive for long, shying away from sex education puts them at a higher risk of sexual abuse.
Don’t how to begin the sex ed talk with your little tots? Here are a few things to teach them concerning their bodies and
Parts of your body are Private –
Telling them about their genitals and how it is meant to be private is very important. It is also appropriate to let them know the real names of these parts of their body, they are not weird or funny because everyone has them.
Your body is your own –
Making sure they understand that their body, in general, belongs to them particularly their privates makes them a form of responsibility that no one asides from themselves are in charge of their bodies- well asides from their caregivers (parents or nannies as the case may be), and they have the right to say no if they don’t want to be hugged, kissed or touched by other people if they don’t write about it
No one should ask me to keep a secret especially if it makes me sad or scared –
Child molesters often threaten the kids and force them to secrecy. It is often seen in cases where the molester is a relative o neighbor. Secrets and threats can be totally avoided if as parents we are open enough to our kids and never dismiss whatever they have to say at all times. It boosts their confidence and trusts no matter who tries to silence them.
When playing with friends and older people, we play with our clothes on-
Knowing that they should be fully clothed at all times will help them understand when someone tries to harm them by removing a piece of clothing.
There are several other things to sensitize these little ones on relating to sexual health and abuse, but it still remains that they need to be aware of themselves as you won’t always be around to protect them and that is a first step to avoiding sexual abuse.
I hope you find this article helpful. Comments and question are highly welcomed.