In the Press
Tips to Help Keep Calm During School Closings
Yippee School is cancelled for the day! But it's not so yippee for some parents. Winter storms that lead to school closings can cause added stress for some parents that can lead to child abuse. During winter storms when children cannot go outside or go to school, there is an increase in the number of calls to child abuse hotlines from stressed parents asking for assistance.
Parents may already be struggling with financial issues or employment issues and then have to take care of children who are home from school because of the weather. This is especially true of those parents who are paid by the hour, creating a real sense of stress and hardship on the parent. So here are some tips to help alleviate that stress:
Three tips for parents:
1. Plan a family activity - Pick an activity the entire family can enjoy. Plan to do this activity once in the morning and again in the afternoon. Activities that kids of all ages can enjoy include card games, watching a movie together, baking something yummy, or playing a game like charades. If it is not too bitter cold, maybe bundle up and get outside for a bit.
2. Plan quiet time or time apart - Schedule time when everyone can enjoy personal time alone from everyone else. Good "me time" activities include reading, watching a favorite television show, writing, or drawing. Agree to get back together to share what was learned or created by other family members.
3. Plan time with others - Call a neighbor and see if you and your children can come over for a brief visit. More than likely, they are experiencing cabin fever too. Invite them over the next time everyone's trapped in the house. This is good for the kids and the adults!
When to ask for help:
Parents should realize they are at risk of abusing their child if they are feeling extremely hopeless, isolated or overwhelmed.
If you start thinking about becoming violent with your children or you become extremely angry those are signs that you need to give yourself a break and go to a bedroom or bathroom and calm down. Take a few deep breaths. Think about the consequences of your anger. It's okay to ask for help. We all need help from time to time.
If you experience any of these feelings, please call 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) and a qualified crisis counselor will answer questions and will assist you. Or visit our website and get more great tips and help. www.safeguardfromabuse.com/links.cfm
Steve Durie, Founder Safeguard from Abuse
A Critical Tool: YOUR knowledge of child sexual predators
It's not easy identifying adults who sexually abuse children. Pedophilia is a sickness that knows no bounds of society. While there is no single personality profile that fits perfectly, criminologists and psychologists agree that there are common factors found. Here is just one trait.
Refusal to take responsibility and blames others for failures
Ironically, those who abuse children define themselves as victims. Many abusers blame a terrible childhood, betrayal by a loved one, unfair society, or any excuse to avoid responsibility.
They are immature in their understanding of intimacy, and want closeness, but they lack the skills to feel fulfillment and trust.
Placing themselves in high positions and in areas of trust gives them a sense of importance. They are charming, well liked, and feed on the admiration of others. Children love them and give tremendous pleasure and fulfillment, and this unfortunately renders them prey for the predator's self-gratification.