90% of children who experience sexual abuse are abused by someone they know and /or trust. 30% of victims are abused by a family member, and 60% by someone known to the family or survivor. 2, 3 This doesn’t mean we should be suspicious of the people we know, but it does mean we should think about what kind of precautions we have in place. We have to hold everyone accountable for our kids’ safety, no matter how trustworthy they are.
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We have to establish expectations for the way we treat kids, and each other, so that it’s obvious if boundaries are crossed. A pre-determined set of values around bodies and boundaries can go a long way toward protecting your kids from sexual abuse. It can help people understand what acceptable and unacceptable behavior is, help them make informed decisions, and ultimately avoid dangerous situations.
Journal: what are your values and expectations when it comes to how people treat you? How about the kids in your life? How can you set boundaries so that people honor these values? Check out our free resource for building a Code of Conduct for inspiration.