Speak up… Save a Life 


By Ramis Ahsan

Child abuse – a social taboo, which many pretend does not exist. However, even scarier and deadly, when your own child keeps silent about it.
What has this world come to? Where is it heading? Taking away innocence of children out of desperation is disgusting to the core.
Needless to say how drastically child abuse affects children’s development and psychological behaviors. They end up in a mental state if the issue is left unresolved. Life becomes a pattern of continuous crisis for those who are unable to get over childhood sexual abuse issues.
We as parents have the sole responsibilities upon our children’s well being. If we aren’t there to listen to them how can we even expect them to share anything with us. Our behavior with our children greatly determines the kind of relationship we have with them. When children are not allowed to express their thoughts and concerns, their likes and dislikes, opinions and ideas then the family has failed.
Creating awareness in our children from an early age about sex education is a basic precautionary step. Building their trust regarding anything and everything that goes on in their lives can help in developing healthy relationships. This will not only encourage them to be open about their feelings but also assure them of the support they expect when anything happens to them. They will automatically speak up of any odd behavior or gesture being made to them by any adult – within family or outside. Children often express their feelings by displaying rather than telling.
As a parent we must have that observant eye to recognize what they are trying to tell us. Observing any odd behavior, or signs such as sudden fear of visiting certain places or people, any physical signs on body, displaying anger or disturbed patterns of eating and sleeping; presence of several of these signs at a time is alarming. Immediate action must be taken to resolve the issue at the earliest possible time. It is always better to be safe than sorry!
Child Abuse is not a western phenomenon. It is something that exists in our society which we are too naïve to accept as a problem. The strong bond amongst family and trust which is matter of proud for the Asian community especially us, “The Pakistanis” who take pride in the family bonds. Although it is something to be proud of but sometimes it is the root of cause of humiliation and distress for our very own children. Most of the children have been victimized by their loved ones and no one dares speak against them. To be very honest nobody would ever doubt our good natured uncle or cousin who is like a brother.
We as society need to educate our children that they need to SPEAK UP against child abuse regardless of the person who is involved. As parents we need to create a level of trusts where our children can openly share if their something wrong or they are not comfortable with someone close. There are signs which we need to observe in the behavior of our young ones.
All in all we as a society need to accept this problem and communicate with our children in such a way that they can easily share such problems rather than spend their lives in dilemma where they fear damaging family bonds for the sake of their own self esteem. We need to SPEAK UP for them.

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