All kids have the right to be safe…
All families are different. Sometimes what seems every day normal life in one family will not be normal in another. When you visit your friend from another culture, you may have noticed that they might eat foods that are not the same that you eat at your home or wear different types of clothes. All children, at the same time, have a right to be cared for in a home where they feel accepted, safe and loved.
All kids have a right to be safe from abuse, although all families are different, there are some things that are never OK to happen to kids.
What is abuse?
Abuse means that an older child or an adult does things like:
- Touching your body in a way that makes you feel confused, scared, angry, worried or sad
- Hitting you so that it leaves bleeding, marks or bruises
- Hitting you on the neck or head
- Over and over, calling you names, that make you feel sad or bad or that you don’t belong
- Not giving you a place to live safe
- Not feeding you
- Not letting you go to school
- Hurting other people (like your sister or mum) or animals in front of you, that makes you feel worried, scared or sad
If the people who abuse you are also the people that you want to love you and to keep you safe, remember that you have a right to be safe. Maybe the adults who are caring for you, do not know how best to do that, need someone to help them.
How would you know if you were being abused?
One of the ways our body tells us what’s going on are feelings. It’s important not to ignore what we are feeling, because sometimes our body can give us warning that we are not safe.
When we are happy, and just feel like laughing and smiling, our body tells us by our feelings – we might feel light, jumpy, tingly in your toes. In the same way, when we are scared the hair on the back of our neck gets prickly, we might feel butterflies in our tummy, we might start shaking and curl up in a ball or we might feel tight in our chest.
What can help?
If someone is touching or hurting you in a way that makes you feel bad, scared, sad, angry or worried you can try to:
- Say “No” or “Stop” if you can
- As soon as you can, find a safe place away from the person
- Talk to someone you feel safe with and someone you trust.
Talking to a safe adult is important, someone who:
- Believes you,
- Takes the time to listen and cares about what’s happening to you
- Helps you to know that is not your fault, what has happened
- Asks you what you think might help.
To you can be really hard, finding the words to talk about what has happened. Sometimes safe adults can help us to find the words to say and they can ask us questions that help.
Speaking with us in FKSG is a great step. Let’s start talking on the phone or via email.