Originally Posted by LROM
fwlady/Kymberli, I'm also in the field of child welfare and it sounds to me like maybe you haven't yet come across 2 very common dynamics in child abuse - or maybe no one's called them to your attention yet. StormBride's post is definitely one of them.
I don't dispute that the children you talked to were being open and honest. But I do dispute your idea that the fact that they didn't report any abuse and seemed not to remember any means that it is a certainty that they were never abused before.
There is simply waaaaay too much science and professional experience out there that shows children and adults sometimes do not remember because it is their self-preservation kicking in and not allowing them to remember. But that doesn't change the fact that the abuse did actually happen and was discovered later, after initial inquiries.
These men/young men aren't just boys anymore. And, it isn't a question about whether or not they were abused. I believe that sometimes they just aren't. They say that abuse victims are highly female, or the males are underreported. Or they suppress it. But, usually, if they have really been s*xually abused in a way that upset them, they become repulsed by it and would never visit that on someone else. Now, I know the cycle CAN continue, but I think that it is more likely that the men/boys do it because either it is common aka "normal" to them, or they are emulating something done to them, sometimes NOT in their knowledge or memory. Because if they really did have it affect them negatively, again, they probably won't do it to another child.
So, my only point is that if she does make this no big deal, as is the consensus that is what should be done, it may backfire in the end. He may never see it as traumatizing, therefore, emulate it on someone else, even though he has no recollection of it because it was played out as no big deal. I am not saying make a HUGE deal out of it. I am saying that all children should know that his body is his, and others are theirs, and we aren't to be "playing" these type of games (which OP was already going to do). And, then hope for the best, that you aren't thrust into another similar situation, or that your child isn't continuing this behavior on younger children down the line.
The boy that had a big deal made of it (eventually, and cont to do it until it was treated as such) and got the help and intervention, fared the best. The question is, whether one makes the actions a big deal to the victim so that he doesn't repeat the behaviour in the future. KWIM?
My other point is that abusers aren't necassarily abused, and stats state that too.
My other case is this; my adopted mother's father messed with her. He didn't understand when a child says "I love you" that it wasn't s*xual. Down the line, she was 40+ and he was naked at the end of her bed one night after her mother passed.
She never thought that he would mess with her kids, and lo and behold, he messed with one of her daughters before he passed. The granddaughter kept it quiet until adulthood. Now, his grandson (by one of the 2 younger sons, not my mothers) never had any idea about all this going on over the years, as it wasn't often, and not talked about back then. Grandson has a little girl, and was frantic because he was feeling compulsions to be inappropriate with her. He was never abused by the father or grandfather, to his recollection, very good childhood with his parents, nor was the grandfather "into boys". But, here he was, going crazy because he really feared he would hurt his daughter and couldn't figure out why he was having these feelings toward her. (PTL he got help!) The counselor encouraged him to talk to his siblings, aunts, and uncles on both sides about family history, and see if there was any history of abuse in the family, but in a way that wouldn't be too personal for his reasons for seeking help. He obviously confided in my mother. The situation seems unusual, but it seems that he "inherited" these compulsions from his grandfather.
My point is that the adopted boy may have it in his family, but possibly never being exposed himself. JMHO, I am not a professional. Just my experiences, research, etc. And, maybe the stories I know of are just the weird and unusual.
My other real point, is that we have to all be supervigilant. The numbers of children being victimized is going up for a myriad of reasons, or it is just talked about more. Being a victim myself, I thought I could protect my children. I have been put in the position that OP was put in, when WHAM! my child is exposed and the stranger danger and keeping privates private all that, at exactly 3yo (twice), has to be visited. When I thought having taught these things to my older children (after the first incident), and it would trickle down. Or that they were too young at 3yo to introduce these things. I didn't want them to fear ppl or think that everyone is out to touch them. I thought that keeping them with ppl I KNEW were safe, and supervising situations closely when I couldn't be 100% sure, would protect my children. And, IT DIDN'T. Whereas other children, who weren't being as protected could very well have never had this kind of thing happen to them, because of some roll of the dice. I truly empathize with OP, and I pray that we can all keep our children safe.
I am not a pro, I was just sharing my observations. Just because we think things are a certain way, doesn't mean they are, and I wasn't saying that I KNEW any of my theories to be fact. I do know the stories, otherwise, I wouldn't have shared them. Kymberli