Ken Hammond, USDA
In some cases, a child will disclose that he or she has been sexually
abused. If a child discloses abuse, try to stay calm and, above all else,
believe the child. Children rarely lie about sexual abuse. Here are some
things you should do (PCA-NY, ND):
- Allow the child to talk, but don’t press. Don’t ask the child to repeat the details
over and over.
- Praise the child for telling you.
- Reassure the child that he or she is not to blame.
- Show love and respect for the child.
- Protect the child immediately from the suspected offender.
Whenever discussing potential abuse with
a child, some basic considerations include the following:
- Find a private place to talk.
- Remain calm.
- Be honest, open and up front with the child.
- Use age-appropriate language.
- Remain supportive to the child.
- Listen to the child.
- Stress that it is NOT the child's fault.
- Report the situation immediately.
- Make judgments
- Make promises
- Interrogate the child or try to investigate. This is
especially important in sexual abuse cases.
Continue on to