Child Abuse Prevention

7 Key Body Safety Messages

  1. TALK openly with your child – ensure they know they can talk to you about anything!
  2. TELL your child never to keep secrets that make them feel bad and uncomfortable, even if threatened.
  3. BE WARY of people who are always ‘there’ to help out and who take a special interest in your child.
  4. WATCH for out-of-character behavioral changes in your child and investigate.
  5. LISTEN to your child, even when you are busy and everything else seems more important – abused children often drop hints in conversations to gauge your reaction.
  6. ALWAYS believe your child when they tell you about any forms of abuse; reassure them of your love and that they were never to blame – your initial reaction to a disclosure is very important.
  7. EDUCATE your child in body safety before they are in the abuser’s web, and their lives are changed forever.

What if I suspect child sexual abuse?

Always remember boys and girls can become victims of child sexual abuse at any age. Never ignore a child who reports sexual abuse. Listen carefully to what the child says and call the Missouri child abuse hotline at 1-800-392-3738.