Making a Report Can be Scarey and Healing

I can tell you from first hand experience that it was not easy to make a  report to child protective services about a child predator.  Adding to the emotional ambivalence was the fact that the predator’s mother was a very good friend of mine. After my son, who was struggling with anxiety,  reported that his best friend sexually abused him it took me five months to muster up the courage to make a report. I wrestled with the idea not knowing what all of the consequences were going to be.  I was afraid that Child Protective Services would be too punitive to a  ten year old boy and I was afraid that the boy and his mother would deny that it ever happened.  I was also afraid that the other family would try to hurt us.  What made me turn the corner was the day that I watched a mother talk to a reporter about Jerry Sandusky.  She told the reporter that he had been acused of sexually molesting someone in high school and nothing was done about it.  It registered with me how many children had to be victimized before something was done about it.  I knew I had a responsibility not just to my son who was psychologically scared, but to the other faceless boys like Chase who could easily be victims too.  Chase needed to know that there was a system that could keep him safe from having to experience abuse again.  He had been told by his predator to keep everything a secret or else everyone would hate him.  Inspite of his anxiety, he stood up for what he knew in his heart was right and then I had to do the same thing. Child Protective Services handled the case very well and the other child got the help he needed.  The detective reassured my son that he did the right thing which helped my son tremendously. I did have serious consequences after reporting the abuse.  I was afraid for my life on several occassions when confronted by the other child’s mother.  So put on your armor if you are going to make a report and have the confidence to know that you are helping your child heal and you are preventing many children from having to go through the self hatred, the shame, the anger, the insecurities that are a result of being sexually abused.  You can read more in the book CHASE, by Vivian Sharpe.

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