How to react when a child discloses sexual abuse to you

It takes great courage for a child to come up to you and disclose what they have been going through. In such a situation as an adult you need to know exactly how to react so that the kid doesn’t feel scared or shunned. The kid will continue to confide in you only if they feel you care for them. Kids are extremely sensitive and if a kid is going through some sort of sexual abuse and you do not give them the time or the attention they require, it can lead to adverse effects like a disturbed childhood, mental trauma, depression, which might start to show signs of bad health too.


Related : How to Protect your Children from Pedophiles?

Emphasize – The kid needs to know that whatever happened was not his fault. They need to know that they are not responsible for it and also, that you will stand by them no matter how difficult the whole situation seems. Make the kid feel right and important, show them that you are willing to go out of your way to prove that he is right and you will support them. Knowing that the situation is delicate, you will have to deal with it tactfully.

Reassure – It will mean a lot to the kid if you keep reassuring that you will take the necessary action against the person who has abused them. The kid might not even know what has been done to him, talk to them and find out and then make sure the kid gets due justice because if you don’t fight for the, who will? Reassurance will also give them confidence and make them feel secure, they will feel that you genuinely care for them and that they will be safe in the future too.

Try – For the future, you will have to try and keep the child safe. The kid doesn’t know about sexual abuse as much as you, so it is your duty to keep them safe, and here is how you can do it.

  1. Trust no one, you never know who might be thinking of touching your kid inappropriately. Sometimes there are things that we take for granted, but they turn out to be the exact opposite. You never know who might be abusing or thinking of abusing the child, so keep an eye open for danger.
  2. Explain the kid what good touch and bad touch means. Once the kid has a clear idea of how a person is touching them, it will be easier for them to intimate you in due time. Sit with them and talk to them, tell them how they have to come to you or raise an alarm immediately at the first sign of danger.
  3. Keep the communication open. Name the parts for the kid as it will make the explaining bit much easier. Also, if the kid is your responsibility, you should make sure that they are always in a safe environment. Friends, relatives or anybody for that matter, can be a culprit.

Realted : Child Abuse —Talk woman, talk!!!

Child abuse has lately become quite rampant in a country like ours. The right and the wrong seems a distant concept for even the educated classes and that is the reason why a substantial part of our youth today has had a disturbed childhood. So, let’s come together and make sure that our kids do not have to go through what we went through. Let’s make their childhood pleasant and safe. Let’s be alert and listen to the children when they have something to tell.

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Reader, writer, social worker, journalist, closet poet. Loves books, dogs and people . Travel and tattoo enthusiast. Writing came as an epiphany while doing Journalism and Mass Communication from Xavier Institute of Communications. Currently, turning her passion into her profession.


  1. Sexual harassment must be dealt seriously. If a child comes up to you telling you about it, it is on your part to comfort him/her first and then listen to them. Remember, it is never easy for a kid to come up with something as intense as that and of course, they are not lying. Straightaway take this issue to the other elders of the house and reassure the kid that ou are always there for them.

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