Preventing Sexual Harassment of children
Expert session Question & Answers

I want to know the demarcation of what knowledge is too much for kids. My kids are 6 and 4 years old and I am concerned as there is too much information everywhere.

As a parent I am sure you will agree that you can ensure that your child is aware. If you don’t keep your child aware, they’ll come to know from other sources anyways. In today’s world we have so much information available and at the same time they are so fast growing that even if you want to safeguard them from certain things or certain information, they get to know about it soon. So the first step is that as soon as they reach the age of 6, they are well equipped to understand certain things and you can put it forward to them. A child’s adolescence in earlier days generally started at 10 years. Nowadays it’s 6 years. At age 6 children understand sex, gender, their body parts, whats good and bad for them.
Even if they don’t know, you should sit down and in a play way, you can put these words like you are playing a picture card puzzle or you can make placards and ask them to pick the words which you know and which you don’t. So this will enable us to understand at which level the child is and how fast he/she is growing.
Secondly, the depth of where he or she is heard. So allows you to understand what kind of environment he /she is in.

I want to know about how much to share when it comes to sexual abuse to my children.

You can share about the POSCO (Prevention of child abuse act). Children need to know that sexual harassment can happen in 5 ways and they should know the terminologies used for them.
Sexual Harassment can happen in many ways
1. Physical contact /touch
2. Pornography
3. Misbehaving and following
4. Online media
5. Inappropriate behaviour
6. even nudging and creating impact by a threat or “this for that ”
All these have to be told to the kids. Below 5 years, in a different way and above 5- 10 years in a different way. Your duty is to empower them with basic knowledge. Whether it’s someone known or unknown, if they touch or do anything which makes you feel uncomfortable or unacceptable or is hurting or is making you feel miserable or dirty. Please report to parents, teachers, principals or gender committee/cell in each school or college.
Rule no 1- IMPACT is important of the person not intent
Rule no 2 – We as parents should keep our eyes and ears open as an Advocate it’s important to note. Sexual abuse happens mostly with people who are known to us, very rarely with people unknown. The person who abuses sometimes are people in the same family and we need to be supportive to children and hear them out.
I can only say that gone are the days when we wait for school and kids learn about sex, gender, harrasmet, bullying, harrasmnet from outside. Whether boy or girl we should talk strongly with our children on Body parts, Sexual organs, what’s right and wrong placing scenarios and situations. Teach self defence. What they can do to help anyone undergoing bullying and abuse if they see. We should enable and help teach the right way to respect talk behave with transgender LGBT and other sex with dignity. According to POCSO act
if school is not taking proper action against any bullying, harrasmnet or sexual abuse conducted, they can be questioned by any individual who knows laws of child safety and they can be taken to law.

My son is 3 years old. At what age, and in what manner should we tell him about these things? And what exactly should we tell him? We already tell him about personal space and personal parts.

Yes that’s good. You can tell him in the form of stories.

My daughter is 2.8 years old and I have explained to her that anyone who touches her in some areas (showing to her) and also if someone kisses on lips, to say loudly NO NO. Is it too early to teach her this?

This is perfect for any ages below 5. They should know
1. No touching
2. No kissing
3. Shout for help
4. Speak up boldly only to parents and principal no other
5. No fear and be bold
6. What are body parts which he or she should not touch or should not allowed to be touched
7. Contact details, address, phone numbers of mother and father should be by heart. If you can’t speak, you can write me a chit by dear beta and beti. But don’t be scared because explain to them that mom, dad and principal are your friends.

If two kids kiss each other, same or opposite sex, does it indicate too much of exposure to tv?

Sometimes we find that near ones, relatives are also culprits. When a child is being checked by a doctor, Parents should be with the child at all times. At no cost Parents should leave the room. Whether boy or girl. No matter what the doctor wants to check, one parent should be with the child and doctor. This also indicates they have learnt and seen from somewhere. Could be school, home, mom and dad, Environment, friends , family ,Tv, media etc.
It is ok if done once or twice. They have to be assertively taught ” STRICT no no “. Sexual harassment and victims arise only when parents dont play the right role when kids are young. No person is born criminal or criminal minded. It’s always about he /she not being corrected in the right way when young.

My daughter is 13 years old and they have a topic on reproduction. After studying the lesson she asks me how sperm enters into women's bodies. How do I deal with this?

When kids asks question, DON’T say don’t ask too many questions. Don’t shoo them away or say that you don’t have time. If you’re busy, say I will address it and remind me later. Address it and talk about it. Let them know about sperm ovary reproduction. And vagina and ovary make it interesting like a chemical story. Do a learning session. Be a teacher to them, that’s the most beautiful part or a parent. I know it may be uncomfortable to most parents but if you are not going to do it who will? It’s better to be safe than to be uncomfortable. I talk to my two boys who are in youth like I talk to adults. Talk to them with ownership and nurturing ways to educate them for their safety. Be more of a friend to them rather than a parent. Take some time out and bond with them. Let them know that whatever happens, they can come share it with you. If you are uncomfortable with your boy child, you can tell the father’s to talk to them.

I have 2 boys, a 7 year old and a 1 year old. My problem is that when I am nursing my 1 year old, the elder one tries to peep. Once or twice even at night I think he was sitting and watching, though not sure. He asked me once mumma what is the black thing. Why can't I see it. I don't know how to answer him.

This is a nature gifted beautiful gift of god, nursing a baby. The inquisitiveness of your 7 year old is growing because his question is unanswered. What and why the process happens. How is the milking happening? Take a video on youtube. Tell him a story of cow and calf. Tell him mythological stories. Care and bonding stories with you, spending time telling him that this is how God is built and it is the way we feed the baby. Also be assertive in telling him that it’s a time of privacy with the child and he can come when nursing is over else the baby will get disturbed, may get up. These are some cute ways of not hurting your 7 year old. Remember the assertive tone of he not coming near when you’re nursing the baby can only come after he knows how the milking process occurs and you have taken the kid in confidence of you loving and spending time with him because the second baby insecurity might set it if you don’t give him attention. Hope it helps.

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Raina Khatri Tandon – Preventing Sexual Harassment of children

Raina Khatri Tandon – Preventing Sexual Harassment of children

Raina Random is the Founder of Right2Rise. She is a POSH Specialist , Human Rights Evangelist, a part of Global 100 Mentors, is an UN REX karmveer Awardee2019. She is an International Mentor and Speaker. She is the Founder/ CEO of her own Global company -ISO RIGHT2RISE