If you recognize any of the following
signs and symptoms in your child,
you should ask if anything has happened
and actively listen.

Recognize and Prevent Child Abuse 2017-01-25T06:43:42+00:00

SIGNS & SYMPTOMS OF ABUSE

New Fears

An abused child or teenager may develop new fears of situations, places, or people. They may become shy, anxious, scared or withdrawn.

Anger/Hostility

If a child or teen is not allowed or able to express anger towards the abuser, they may take their anger out on others or against themselves.

Sexual Behaviors

A child may act out sexually. They may show an unusual interest in other people’s or animal’s genitals, or masturbate excessively.

Sleeping/Eating

A child or teen may have problems sleeping, nightmares, sudden loss or gain in appetite. Children may regress in their development.

School Problems

A child or teen may have difficulty concentrating which can affect school performance. A change in grades or behavior at school is not uncommon.

Boundaries

A child or teen may be overly friendly to strangers, tolerate abuse from other children, become isolated and withdrawn, or become overly obedient.

Self Destructive

A child or teen may feel guilt and shame from abuse and begin hurting themselves; hitting/cutting, drugs, alcohol or even a suicide attempt.

STEPS TO PREVENT ABUSE

Listen To Your Child
Talking with your child and listening to what he or she has to say is the first step in preventing abuse.

Know Who Is In Contact With Your Child
Most abusers are someone the child or family knows and trusts.

Avoid One Adult/One Child Situations
Drop in on situations where your child may be alone with another adult (even close family members).

Monitor Your Child’s Internet And Cell phone Use
Offenders often use the web and text messaging to lure children into physical contact.

Offer And Ask For Help
Curb stressful situations and one adult/one child contact by assisting friends, neighbors and family members with child supervision. Also, ask for help when children are left in your care.

Educate Your Child
Teach your child about their body and the difference between appropriate and inappropriate touches. They should also know that inappropriate touches could occur with strangers, a family member, adult friend or an older youth. Teach your child that it is okay to tell another safe adult and give them multiple options of safe adults.

Give Your Child Permission To Say “NO”
A child should be able to set their own boundaries whether or not they are comfortable around an adult. Allow them to say “No” if they do not want to be alone with or hug/kiss another adult.

Resources To Help

The Center for Child Protection works with children and families referred by law enforcement and Child Protective Services. If you need assistance but have not been referred to the Center, please contact one of the organizations below to find out more about how they can help your family.

Child Care Information

Counseling

Crisis Services

Emergency Shelters

Groups and Classes
The Center offers group therapy and parenting classes as additional support to families in the child abuse system.

If you or your child need help getting through this difficult time, the Center for Child Protection offers group therapy sessions and classes. The Protective Parenting Group is designed to address issues related to trauma and protectiveness through both psychoeducational and psychotherapeutic group processes. Group therapy can be a great source of support because you will work with families that are going through difficult times similar to your own. Pre-registration is required and child care is provided. Call 512-472-1164 to register.
A children’s activity group is provided for children who are in need of child care while their parents are attending Protective Parenting Group. The Children’s Activity Group is a time for a child to be able to come and have fun while obtaining tools that result in empowerment for their everyday lives. This is accomplished through arts and crafts and discussions that are child friendly.

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