Have the Hot Chocolate Talk with Your Kids this April
Apr 17, 2019 12:33AM
● By Rachel Belfield
Shoreline Mayor Will Hall has proclaimed the month of April Sexual Assault
Awareness Month. Sexual Assault Awareness Month calls attention to the the
fact that sexual violence is widespread and impacts everyone. While anyone can
be a victim of sexual assault, women, children, and marginalized populations
are more frequently victimized than others.
Seattle-based nonprofit Committee for Children's Hot Chocolate Talk toolkit provides real-life tips and talking points. Several Shoreline residents have worked for this organization and contributed to the research-based and free resources they make available to families. Here's what their experts have to say:
Have the Hot Chocolate Talk
that talking to your kids about sexual abuse,
touching, and private body parts can help keep them safe. That’s why we’ve
designed the Hot Chocolate Talk to provide warmth and comfort for an
understandably difficult discussion. Based on research and filled with
age-appropriate talking points, this tool will help to normalize the topic and
help keep kids safe.
Grab a cup of cocoa, download the conversation guide attached, and start the talk every parent needs to have.
Why is This so Important?
One in four girls and one in 20 boys report experiencing sexual abuse before the age of 18.And unfortunately, in 90 percent of child sexual abuse cases, children know their abuser. "Stranger Danger" is more myth than fact, and conversations about safety rules need to start early and happen often. Here are tips for talking with children of any age:
- Never keep secrets about touching.
- Always ask the adult in charge if it’s okay for another adult to give you something or take you somewhere.
- It’s never your fault if someone touches your private body parts.
- Tell an adult if someone makes you feel uncomfortable, and keep telling until someone believes you.
The first time you have this conversation, it may feel uncomfortable or unnatural. Remind yourself that a few moments of discomfort could help prevent your child from being a victim of sexual abuse.
Research shows that talking to your kids about sexual abuse, touching, and private body parts can help keep them safe. Have the talk.
Child sexual abuse is a scary thing, but talking about it shouldn’t be. Research shows that talking to kids about sexual abuse, touching, and private body parts can help keep them safe.