Helping Children With Loss
One in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually molested by the time they turn eighteen. You may be asking, "What does grief have to do with sexual molestation?" Let's talk about that. Grief, as you've heard me say is not always about a death. Children who have been sexually molested lose the ability to trust, they lose their innocence, self-esteem, and they lose their ability to feel safe.
They become gripped with fear and anxiety. They battle depression and they isolate themselves. Their molester fills them with fear as they are told not to tell or I will kill you, or I will hurt your mother or siblings. They now carry so much fear it paralyzes them, Should they tell someone, they may not be believed and they will carry an abundance of shame most of their lives. Their predator may tell them they are 'special' and once the act is done, all they feel is scared, confused and dirty.
I am launching a new option to allow adults to Help Children With Loss. It may have nothing to do with being sexually abused. Children experience an array of losses. Do you know what to say to a child when they suffer loss? Most parents do not and they are amazed at the fact that they merely teach their children what they were taught by their own parents.
What did you learn about loss? What did your parents tell you when your best friend moved away? What did you learn about loss when you tried your best and you didn't make the team? How were you treated when you lost your first pet? How did it feel the first time you were betrayed?
Were you, like so many of us told, "If you're going to cry, go to your room?"
Maybe your mom, will all her well intentions said, "Oh honey, don't feel bad, here ... I made you some cup cakes, have one and you'll feel better."
Maybe you were told you can replace the loss when your dog died. Maybe you got a new dog only to discover this dog was just not the same as the one you buried. People had the right intentions, but they just didn't have the right tools.
Helping Children With Loss does give parents, teachers, counselors, child care providers and the array of other professionals who have been called to work with children. These individuals have been called to love and nurture children. They believe that no child should suffer a sexual crime and when they discover that something has happened, they do the right thing and they report it. But what about the victims of the molestation? What are they being told?
"It wasn't your fault." "This should have never happened to you." "I am so very sorry this happened." "You didn't do anything wrong so let it go."
Or the opposite - the most damaging of all are things like, "This is all you fault." "What did you do to cause this to happen?" "I hate you ... get out of my sight." Can you even imagine how the child of this horrific crime must feel when these types of statements are said?
Children live what they learn ... and working in the early childhood education field has proven that to me. The children that were once in my care, are now parents with children of their own. I know for a fact that I didn't have the right tools to help these children. I too was that mom who just wanted my children to 'feel better' and loved them with food because I didn't know how to take their pain away and made it worse in doing so.
What about children of divorce? Most of us can relate to the end of a once loving relationship. No matter who was to blame, or what the circumstances were that led up to the divorce, it hurt. We as adults try to rationalize with our brain and it's really a heart issue.
Helping Children With Loss deals with the heart of every child. If you love a child, or have been called to the profession of teaching children, counseling children or especially if you have children of your own, this will give you the tools to Help Children With Loss.
If you are like the thousands who have already gone through this course, don't be surprised when your own inner child begins to relate the array of unr