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How can we protect children from sexual abuse? SOhopeful has some answers

Each year thousands in of children in America are sexually abused, but there are viable, effective, and fiscally responsible ways to spare many from this experience.

(PRWEB) August 18, 2005 -- Sexual abuse, and especially child sexual abuse, is a heinous crime and is inexcusable. But there are basic strategies and methods to protect children from abuse and victimization first and foremost being good family relationships and constant communication, the second being parental supervision.

With that in mind, there are several programs that can be implemented to intervene, to actually stop someone from abusing in the first place, and to halt existing abuse.

Many adults who have sexually abused children have stated that their inappropriate thought patterns began in early puberty. Had there been intervention at that time, those deviant thought patterns would not have become ingrained and they may never have sexually abused a child.

Many juvenile offenders have very poor personal boundaries, due to lack of healthy boundaries at home, and are therefore unable to recognize and respect the boundaries of others.

When asked about juvenile offenders and their experience in the system, Carolyn Ferguson (Executive Director of SOhopeful International Inc.) stated, "It is unwise in the long-run to immediately escort these young people directly into the court system, where they may face shame-based treatment programs, which can be extremely damaging to their developing identity and self image."

Since our children are bombarded daily with so many sexually oriented mixed messages from our media, it naturally leads to confusion. There are sex education classes in public schools, but they cover only the biological processes and sexually transmitted diseases. Teens usually get their information about sexuality from peers, movies, music or other questionable sources. Currently, there is no venue for teens to go to get information about sexuality relating to appropriate boundaries, what is normal, what is not, and where the "line" is between them.

SOhopeful has some proposals to stop sexual abuse before it starts.

Carolyn explained one:
"It makes sense, then to create a program that is a confidential avenue for young teens to ask questions, to discuss healthy boundaries and appropriate behavior and the legalities of sexual behavior. It could also be an opportunity to usher a young person with unhealthy thought patterns and inappropriate behaviors towards counseling and positive programs that would be more personal and in-depth about learning how to interact with their peers in a non-sexual way, and help them to grow up psychosexually healthy. Not only does the juvenile get attention in this area, the parents and siblings could use the help, too.

"The goal is to stop those inappropriate thoughts from becoming ingrained patterns and incorporated into their personality and identity. Most of these kids can be realigned and assisted to grow up healthy, families can be strengthened and unified, our communities and everyone benefits."

This could be done at a minimum of cost.

Likewise, there are common-sense strategies to improve the management and tracking of actual sex offenders who pose a high-risk to the public. SOhopeful International has a plan to strengthen the sex offender registry in a way that respects the rights of victims, protects the public, and is fiscally responsible.


Permission is granted to reproduce this article as long as the above resource paragraph is left in tact with active links.


Steven J. Williams, P.C.
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