Sex Education is crucial to fight against the child sexual abuse. - Seeker's Thoughts

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Sex Education is crucial to fight against the child sexual abuse.


Child sexual abuse is a major public health concern, affecting one in eight children and causing massive costs including depression, unwanted pregnancy, and HIV.

Worldwide, child sexual abuse is a massive challenge for public health, social justice, human rights, and gender equality. 


The socioeconomics costs are profound, with the average cost for each victim estimated at 210 000US$. 




Health consequences include anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and social isolation.

The Child sexual abuse is also associated with subsequent sexual victimization, unwanted pregnancy, and HIV acquisition.


Child sexual abuse endemic worldwide: 12.7% of all children experience sexual abuse (18.0% of girls (16.4 to 19.7%) and 7.6% of boys (6.6 to 8.8%). 

Girls are two to three times as likely as boys to be victimized in Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America and higher prevalence for girls was recently found in five African nations. Some countries like China, however, have reported a lower prevalence for girls.



Whereas developing countries like India and Pakistan sex education is one topic that even today attracts a few disapproving glances from grownups.

According to gynecologists and obstetricians, there are still many people in India who don’t realize the importance of sex education.

They don’t understand that even if you don’t talk about something as normal as sex, kids will have questions in their minds as they grow up

Especially now when they are flooded with so much sexual content on the internet where they spend maximum time.


Why sex education is important?


There is a common thought process that sex education means only talking about sexual intercourse between two people. But that is not the case.

Sex education is a comprehensive process of providing information and helping young individuals from attitudes and beliefs about sexual intimacy, relationships and one’s sexual identity. 

It also helps develop an understanding of children about consent and the importance of making informed choices and being confident about them.


Sex education makes kids aware of the changes taking place in their bodies (puberty) and also teaches them how to make safe, healthy choices as they grow up because healthy relationships and healthy sexual life are the keys to happy adult life.


This would help them manage sexual advances encourage them to speak up if they are abused sexually and also spreads social awareness by telling them about the right age to have kids, the importance of using protection while having sexual intercourse and the consequences of having children before or outside marriage.



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How sexual abuse affects the child?


Most people would agree that the child abuse is a heart-breaking issue, yet many believe it’s not something that could happen to anyone they know or love.

On the contrary, child abuse happens everywhere – in all types of homes families, neighbors, schools, churches and communities. 

None of the population, culture, or socioeconomics group is immune. Chile abuse is likely to present somewhere in your very own network.


People who abuse children are not just creepy strangers who lurk behind bushes or abduct children in vans.

They often include people we encounter every day, people their victims know love, and trust... people who abuse can be grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, mom’s dads, teachers, coaches, mentors, neighbors, and family friends.

                                    
The effects of child abuse are devastating and typically long-lasting, including a lifetime of potential struggles with mental health issues, low esteem, increased risk of drug abuse/addiction, and pattern of dysfunctional and unhealthy relationships.

The realities of child abuse are alarming but developing an awareness of the problem the increased ability to prevent or learn to identify when child abuse occurs.




Why Children need to learn the name of body parts?

Children need to learn the names of body parts instead of using euphemisms.

 After being sexually abused, most of the time in trial proceedings, defense lawyers ask specific and inappropriate questions, which require child witnesses to describe the details of abused including the behavior of the accused.


Not knowing how to narrate what exactly happened to them, children typically provide vague and sketchy responses (he hurt me thereof I dint feel right or comfortable when he/she touched me there) instead of using standard terms that describe body parts.


There is a compelling need to increase the awareness of the legal system about child-sensitive communication.

 But more essentially, children should be provided sexuality education so they can be equipped with the right vocabulary to talk about sexual abuse, without either trivializing it is obfuscating judicial actors.


Teaching them the correct names of private parts will also reduce the shame and stigma associated with talking about them.



How can we raise awareness of child abuse?


Educate yourself on the statistics of child abuse and understand that even your own children could be at risk.

Many parents feel that giving sex education is just a one-time discussion which they can get over with quickly by just telling them how the sexual act takes place and how they go through puberty, but it is much more than that.

It becomes easier and more efficient when parents treat it as an ongoing process and use everyday moments to discuss the different aspects of sex education.

“For instance, if there is a commercial for female hygiene products coming up on television while your child is watching TV, you can take that opportunity to introduce the topic of puberty and menstruation to her or him.

Be open and honest to your child about every topic you talk about. If you feel uncomfortable in sharing sexual information, you can share that with them too. 

If you don’t know the answer to any particular question they ask, tell them that and help them find the answer. 

But make them understand how important it is to talk it out. Adolescence is a period that is like a roller coaster ride for your child. They are undergoing many changes physically and emotionally which they have no idea how to deal with.

 Parents, need to understand your child’s feelings regarding puberty and comfort them. Don’t lecture them about how talking about these things is bad and uncultured. This way you will only discourage them from talking about such topics which will force them to look for answers in unreliable sources instead. 


Improved awareness of these factors would greatly assist the response to child sexual abuse.

 However, awareness alone may not reduce child sexual abuse. It may not by itself produce appropriate responses by adults to disclosures and suspected cases, which is doubly important since survivors are often deeply traumatized through the indifference of bystanders.
It may not catalyze institutional reforms or influence broader societal change to undesirable social norms, legal frameworks, gender inequalities, and constructions of masculinity which facilitate child sexual abuse.

Greater gains require enhanced awareness allied with a second attribute.
Children nowadays are under immense pressure from peers and face many challenges during the adolescent period. 

he least you can do to help is to make them feel you are there for them. Motivate them to come to you without hesitation and share their concerns with you.


This way you can guide them better. Sex education is not just about explaining to children how babies are born and what periods are. It is meant to instill the right attitude in them regarding sexual intimacy.

Parents  should ask from their teenage kids about how they feel about sex and having intimate relationships with people. It is important to tell them about the emotions, feelings, and values behind having sexual intercourse.




One of the main roles sex education in India plays is to develop sensitivity in today’s children and make sure they grow up to be broad-minded individuals with respect for everybody. 

Therefore parents should deal with topics like homosexuality and sexual abuse with care. Also, avoid giving negative responses to your child’s doubts because that might reinforce the fact that you aren’t supposed to discuss these things or these things are bad.

Early-onset of puberty in boys and girls and increasing exposure to sexual content via television and the internet makes it necessary to introduce sex education to students at a reasonably early age. 

Many schools nowadays prefer to address sexual abuse and its prevention in classes II and III so that young children have the basic knowledge to identify if they are being sexually exploited and can seek help at the right time.

Comprehensive sex education courses can be introduced from 7th to 9th grade onwards when most children have entered puberty.
Sex education. Still, be a less-talked-about topic but its importance can never be undermined. Proper sexual knowledge not only empowers young minds but also ensures that they always make the right choices in life. 







 United Nations’ and other community’s initiative to prevent child sexual abuse


The gravity of this global issue is reflected by the United Nations'
 New effort to respond to sexual abuse in the 2015 Sustainable Development Goals.

The United Nations’ 2015 Sustainable Development Goals has set an agenda for global human development efforts from 2015–2030. 


Significantly, these Goals have added two new targets acknowledging child abuse as a fundamental obstacle to health, demanding concerted action. 

Target 16.2 aims to end the abuse and exploitation of children, and Target 5.2 aims to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls, including sexual exploitation. Governments will be required to report on progress against these targets.

A way forward

Worldwide, there is a need for new advances to better prevent and respond to child sexual abuse. At individual, institutional, and societal levels, developing awareness about child sexual abuse and empathy towards victims is necessary to enhance healthy behavior, responses, and societal change.


 Levels of cognitive capacity and intrinsic motivation to respond prosaically can be increased through multidisciplinary education and innovative methods of building empathy. Awareness gains may be more readily achievable than empathy gains.
 
 However, both are required to promote a stronger social fabric to protect children. Enhanced awareness and empathy are key attributes to facilitate a cascade of beneficial outcomes in violence prevention, humane responses, policy reform, and the development of healthy social norms and communities.



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