Children are the future, the next generation. They need help to be guided in the right direction throughout all aspects of their lives. Jeff Herman had some advice on how to help talk to your children about protecting themselves from sexual predators. Herman realizes that you can’t always be with your kids to protect them from dangerous people; however continuously talking with them about what is going on with their body and teaching them what is right and wrong is a great way to help them to protect themselves.
Start the talk by keeping it age appropriate. You don’t have to wait until your child is a teenager to give them “the talk” just inform them about keeping boundaries and that they are able to say ‘no.’ If something makes them feel uncomfortable, they don’t have to just let it happen, and they have the right to make whatever it is stop. Keep open lines of communication and don’t stop talking. This sort of conversation shouldn’t be a onetime thing Herman emphasizes. It needs to be ongoing as bodies change and they get older and more curious. Having your kids feel comfortable talking with you is one of the most important things. It helps them to feel safe enough to come to you if something unfortunate were to happen. Even with all the talking and safety precautions, sometimes bad things happen to good people. Herman also recommends keeping an eye on your kids’ behavior to make sure there are no sudden changes. A few drastic behaviors to watch out for are: bed-wetting, nightmares, depression, self-harm, and/or anger problems.
Jeff Herman is well known for exposing sexual abuse scandals. One of the best known was from Archdiocese of Miami in 2011 where a $100 million verdict was awarded on behalf of the client who was abused by a priest. With this background Herman’s advice on how to keep the next generation safe can be taken seriously. Kids are our future, and we need to work to protect them and help them protect themselves.