Connect with us


Teaching Good and Bad Touch

This is a really tough one to talk about. Talking about sex is taboo in India but today it is important to make our child aware a good or bad touch, sexual abuse and later about sex. We as parents want to protect our child from all eventuality and for this need the child to be made aware. We have to give them the right knowledge and confidence that no matter what they can come to us, and we will be there for them.

Good communication can go a long way in keeping your child safe and making him/her turn to you when in trouble. We are exposed to rape cases, sexual harassment cases and that too with small children. These cases are on the rise, signs of a demented mind. Saving kids from such acts are in our hands. Keep your lines of communication open with your child. Please don’t think that its that they are too small to be taught this. You cannot accompany them all the time when in school, playground, parks and many other places.

It’s a misconception that only girls are abused. I have read numerous incidents of teachers, helpers, friends or relatives molesting kids. I have also read that a child is frightened into staying quiet but an observant parent will be able to notice changes in the child’s behavior. The child’s body language may change, some become quiet; others become wary of touch, and conversations trickle down to a minimum. It is up to an alert parent to read the signs.

Begin at about 18 months when the child is curious about their body parts during bath times. Identify body parts and emphasize that they own their bodies (‘your body is all yours’) and that no one has a right to touch them unless it’s okay with them. At 2 and 3.25 now, they know that their bodies belong to them and that they can reserve certain parts as ‘private.’  Even it’s something like holding hands with someone or having a friend hug or kiss them, they know they have the right to say no if they don’t like it, felt uncomfortable or uneasy. Children should be taught that a touch (from anyone) that makes them feel bad or uncomfortable is a bad touch. The child should be taught to trust their own feelings. Do not say NO but tell the parent about it too.

Keeping the lines of communication open with your child. Keep your tone light and conversation easy. Address your child in a lighthearted way so that kids feel comfortable talking about the subject or asking questions. Best time is to let these conversations happen naturally and work them into our everyday life. Like talking about it during potty or bath time.

Another aid in your explanation can be videos available on the internet. You never know they might relate any incident that they have observed or heard. This can be easy for you as well to explain issue further. Choose a video that shows all the main points like who are could be the person, what that person will talk, what will he tell kids to do, what acts can make them aware of bad touch. This bad touch can be explained from your side as “A touch that hurts you physically or makes you uncomfortable is a bad touch.”

It’s our duty as a parent to keep our children safe. Please leave one emergency contact number with them or tell them not to take anything from anyone except you. Taking care doesn’t mean that you have to invade their personal space, give them freedom as well. They need to know that they are valuable and loved.