Mumbai school rape: Experts tell you what the next step should be if your child complains of abuse
Mumbai city news: A physical examination of the child is required. Check for bruises, injuries or scratchesmumbai Updated: Jun 12, 2017 10:06 IST
The 57-year-old founder and trustee of a prominent Andheri school, and a nursery teacher, were booked for allegedly raping a three-year-old student. While the principal refused to comment, he said the school was cooperating with the police. As the news makes headlines, Dr Sagar Mundada, psychiatrist, tells you what you can do if your child complains of abuse:
1. Make sure your child is comfortable. Listen to what he or she has to say. Body language plays a crucial role here. Emphasise that you trust your child. Do not overreact, you may frighten your child, who will then stop talking. Wait until you child has narrated the whole incident and then respond.
2. Keep talking to your child, don’t let the importance of the issue fade. You should approach a professional, such as a child or adolescent psychiatrist, or counsellors who can help you.
3. Asking the police to file a complaint is a necessary legal step. Ensure that the cops register a case under the relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO).
4. What signs should you watch out for if you suspect your child is being abused? Mundada says parents should look out for sudden changes in child’s behaviour. Fear of socialisation, nightmares, bed-wetting and not wanting to go to school are common signs of abuse. A physical examination of the child is required. Check for bruises, injuries or scratches.
5. Be your child’s friend. Parents should talk to their kids regularly and discuss a range of topics besides academics. A good rapport between the child and his parents is important. It is necessary to create an environment in which the child feels comfortable enough to tell his parents about incidents of abuse. Children need to be taught the difference between good and bad touch. They should be cautioned that certain parts of their bodies should not be touched by anyone, even a relative.