Child Abuse Prevention Month Post( April)- A Daughter’s Letter to Her Parents


April is child abuse prevention and awareness month. This is an issue which needs urgent attention all over the globe.

This  is my contribution , an effort to raise awareness and my voice Against Child Abuse.

Here is a poem I wrote some time back on this issue.

A Lost Childhood

Do click on the link and read. Leave your heartprints there .

******

A daughter’s letter to her parents

Dad,  you’re no more  but I have Memories of you.

Memories that I will take with me to the grave. I know that Peter would be alive today but for you. It wasn’t a freak accident that killed him. You killed him. He died so that I could live.

I remember how you called me your “ special girl” “ daddy’s little darling” who needed
“ special attention” . I did not want it.

I remember how you made me feel that you belonged to me and I to you and touching and kissing were gestured to make the bond stronger. Only that with time  the bond became a bondage. I  had no option than to give in day or night.

The world saw us as a happy family, all nice and clean and well fed. Loving parents and adorable kids.

When ma was away you made our days “special” by taking us for fishing at the creek. We laughed and had fun and  enjoyed a hearty meal  but then something always annoyed you and you ordered me to the basement and I could hear the shouts, cries as you kicked, slapped and hit peter till he turned blue. I would sit in a dark corner dreading the door to open. You would walk in quietly and call me in the most tender voice I ever heard and then  make me sit in your lap and touch me all over  and crushing me against you. I felt suffocated but remembered that you had bad temper. Submission was the only solution.

I and Peter would sit under the tree in the back yard and silently nurse our inner wounds.

You hated him and threatened him to keep his mouth shut  and he just two years older than me would cook up stories about how his bicycle skidded and how the boys at school bullied him when people asked him how he got the bruises.

He suffered so that You would not hit me.

As we grew up I began to resent  your advances but that made matters worse  and you slapped me, pulled my hair and even kept us hungry for days

MOM

You remember  ma when you went  for your assignments and to granny’s because you needed to “ get away”  from everyday fights and we cried and pleaded to be taken along but you never listened to us?

Even when you were at home  many  times we saw you hiding behind the curtains crying and watching us but you remained silent.

All the “ special dinners” that we had  were indicative of  something dreadful future event.

My body hurt at places which I did not know existed. I bled at times and had sores that hurt.  The more I protested  the stronger he became.

Dad

You had power that you misused  and made us what we are. We trusted ourselves with you because we HAD too.

We were left feeling alone, betrayed, abandoned, worthless, even unlovable.

I hated you mom and I hated you dad but most of all I hated myself.

I wondered how come you never saw our bruises, our pain and hurt, how come you never noticed our falling grades and ill health.

I took solace in eating and smoking , I bunked classes to “ fit in” . Overeating made me obese.
Peter  became more reserved and shut himself from the world. His grades fell  and he always fell sick. Many  times I heard ma  tell you to leave him alone and then I understood  why I escaped your attention.

He took my place to save me the pain and guilt.

MOM

When you left one night  the hell broke loose in our home. We were made to do all the chores , cook, clean and most of all amuse HIM. Many a times we were beaten up, locked  in separate rooms without food and water.

Until one day when Peter  died under ‘mysterious circumstances’.

The matter was hushed  due to His “ contacts” at higher places  and you never knew the real reason  for his death but I knew.

His funeral became an opportunity for me to escape. I ran away from home. I was barely 15.

Dad

Life took its course and today after four years I stand at your  funeral hoping that  maybe it will heal some of my wounds and Peter’s soul would rest in peace too  but some wounds never heal.

Mom

We lost our innocence, our childhood and Peter his life only because You  remained Silent.

 

SAY NO TO CHILD ABUSE


Child abuse is usually classified into three major types: physical, sexual and emotional.

Child sexual abuse has been defined as  involvement of dependent and immature children in sexual activities they don’t fully comprehend to which they are unable to give informed consent.

The Juvenile Justice Act 1986 defines child sexual abuse as interaction between a child and an adult in which the child is being used for the sexual stimulation of the perpetrator or another person. Sexual abuse is not often identified through physical indicators alone.

Emotional abuse is the neglect or maltreatment of children. It may involve a disregard of the physical, emotional, moral or social needs of the children.

The Indian Penal Code does not spell out  definition of child abuse as a specific offence; neither does it offer legal remedy and punishment for “child abuse”. The IPC broadly lays out punishment for offences related to rape or sodomy or “unnatural sex”. The IPC laws are rarely interpreted to cover the range of child sexual abuse; the law relating to terms “sodomy” or “rape” are too specific and do not apply to acts like fondling, kissing, filming children for pornographic purposes, etc.

Even the law for the welfare of children, the Juvenile Justice Act, does not specifically address the issue of child sexual abuse. It is difficult to apply the provisions of existing laws to any case of child abuse as it is easy for a defence lawyer to make use of the legal loopholes to facilitate their client’s escape from punishment. Even if someone does get convicted under the IPC for rape, the maximum imprisonment is a mere two years.  [ LINK ]

This is what the law says  – Laws on child abuse in India

Organizations like Prayas, CRY and many others are trying to combat this issue in India.

Arpan is a registered organization based in Mumbai with a mission to Prevent  occurrence of Child Sexual Abuse and heal those who have been affected by it.

Asia Sentinel reports :

India is home to more than 375 million children, comprising nearly 40 percent of the country’s population,  the largest number of minors in any country in the world. Despite its ethos of non-violence, tolerance, spirituality and a new trillion-dollar economy, India hosts the world’s largest number of sexually abused children, at a far higher rate than any other country. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one in every four girls and one in every seven boys in the world are sexually abused, hardly encouraging, but still far below India’s totals.

69 per cent of all Indian children are victims of physical, mental or emotional abuse, with New Delhi’s children facing an astounding abuse rate of 83.12 percent.

It is the least documented violation in our country.

Apart from the sexual abuse including child prostitution and child pornography , child labor, child slavery, child marriages and child trafficking need to be tackled with strict measures.

We urgently need a legislation that deals specifically with child abuse .

There is also a  need for strict enforcement of the law.

Also, parents, teachers and others in the community play a vital role to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse.

Children are the country’s greatest human resource and a measure of the country’s social progress lies in their well-being :

Don’t we want our children to be healthy, educated, safe, happy and have access to life opportunities?

Come join hands to prevent child abuse and neglect. Report any case you know of to the concerned authorities. Raise your voice  and make people  especially children aware of what abuse and neglect is and about their rights.

It is time to SAY NO TO CHILD ABUSE. DO YOUR BIT NOW

Vote on Indivine

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21 thoughts on “Child Abuse Prevention Month Post( April)- A Daughter’s Letter to Her Parents

  1. The story gave me chills. How sad. So good of you to do this post. Such matters indeed need attention.

    Yes Neha In our country the horrifying aspect of this social evil is pushed under the carpet so we hardly come to know anything. we need to speak up and make everyone aware.

    Like

  2. Sadly this story might be true for some.

    welcome to my blog Maulee. Yes this story is been written from various accounts of child abuse which I researched while writing the article so in a way it is a true story

    Like

  3. This is indeed an ubiquitous and grave problem but few dare to speak about it due to the social stigma attached to it. I wonder how the blood ties take this gruesome form.

    Partha , welcome to my blog. The cases of abuse in chilren happen mostly at home and in many of the cases it is incest too. Sad but true .. a reality which we can not ignore. It is everywhere , just that not many speak up and get support

    Like

  4. The story brought tears to my eyes….

    The figures are horrifying…

    Most people look away from such incidents even if they know that a crime is happening under their own roofs.

    you know in my family a girl was facing some problem with her tutor but the parents refused to listen to her saying she wanted to gain sympathy and skip studies. She just kept quit. We tried to help but were snubbed. so is the situation here .:(

    Like

  5. 😐

    There’s a good book on Child Sexual Abuse in India called ‘Bitter Chocolate’. It made me feel horribly down. After this post of yours, I plan to write a post based on notes from that book.

    I will surely pick up the book and you please ping me when you write the post. thank you for visiting and commenting Haresh

    Like

  6. Pingback: Child Abuse Prevention Month Post( April)- A Daughter's Letter to … Children Me

  7. This was really shocking.
    Shows why mothers must get out of abusive relationships.
    Why sex education is so necessary.
    Why children and what they say, should be taken seriously and respected.
    Why a family where one person is a ‘head’ and others are to obey that member (male or female) is not as good, as a family where every member is treated with equal respect and it us understood that they have feelings too and they are capable of reasoning.

    Yes IHM you have raised some very important points and I hope we look into them as soon as possible and give our children a safe life. It is shocking and here I just did not mention the horrifying details of abuse . It would send chill down the spine

    Like

  8. I do not understand why any child should be subject to such mental, emotional and physical torture. Children are very special, very very special.

    Like

  9. The story is horrifying, the worst part is that it happens, still. No matter the advances we have made, in society, in communication, in so many aspects of life, CSA is still a real, horrible entity.

    Kudos for this post, and the details given as to the nature, the legal aspects and the information.

    Mostly for caring. For speaking up. For helping to create awareness.

    As IHM has said, if only children were listened to more, and responded to, more children could be saved from CSA.

    Like

  10. I’ve covered this a couple of times on my blog and I am happy that bloggers are taking this up and writing about it.

    We need to spread more awareness about this in our society. Thank you for your post!

    Like

  11. Such a horrifying reality. The worst is that a child is so defenceless. The very people who are supposed to protect them, ill treat and abuse them. Where will the child go? This is the worst from of crime that is prevelant in the society today. And most of the times, the culprit does not even get reported. We need very strict laws to stop this. CSA should be very very severly punished. Maybe even capital punishment.

    Like

  12. Thank you all for reading and supporting the cause. I hope our children are taken seriously and heard more. That we keep our eyes and ears open for any sign of ” not normal” behavior.
    Do keep visiting my blog and leave your precious views.

    Like

  13. Missed a hearbeat!! more than the sorrow it made my blood boil, am sure there are dozens of children out there suffering without knowing whom to tell this!!! they hardly know wat it means and yet dont know whom to complain! :(!!

    Like

  14. My god! This is horrible.. How can human beings do this to their kids!!

    Kids are so innocent.. they hardly even know what is going on.. and the only people they can trust doing such terrible stuff to them.. unimaginable.

    Like

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  17. Very well researched & written post….this sort of abuse is the dregs-child has no escape route…humanity can sink to any levels it seems.

    Like

  18. Pingback: A Daughter’s Letter to Her Parents – A Survivor’s Story | CSA Awareness Month

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