Archives For June 2012

Updated June 20, 2012

I can understand this Texas father’s rage.

He discovered a 46 year old man sexually molesting his four year old daughter in a secluded area on the family ranch.  

Nothing will ignite the adrenaline-fueled anger like someone harming your own child.  We felt this primitive response too when we learned what a family friend had done to our 15-year-old daughter, Kalyn. However we did not act on it.

 But oh the pain that is still forthcoming when the dad’s response resulted in the abuser’s death.

Is there anything that could be learned from this tragic event in our own quest to protect our children? I can think of a few things.

1. We must understand that even our own homes are not places to let down our guard when visitors are present.  

2.  This perpetrator had the audacity to act even with the high risk of discovery. It shows how offenders can be deceived into thinking they are invisible.

3. Authorities have said that the abuser was hired by the family to work on the ranch.  Sometimes the rules of stranger danger are not enough. We must recognize that 90% of predators are known to the victim. Perceived trust can cause us as parents to subconsciously label people as safe and allow an abuser private access to a child.

4.  It does not take long for an abuser to act. Our defenses must be constantly on guard.

5. Sexual abuse is totally illogical to the normal mind. If we try to apply our beliefs to their actions, we can be naively tricked. Just because we would never see a child as a sexual object does not mean that others have the same standards. Shocking, isn’t it?

Will you join me in prayer for this family? A little child has been traumatized and needs healing.

Though the county grand jury has announced her Daddy will not face charges, this family is facing unthinkable grief and pain.  And who knows how many family members of the perpetrator are shocked and grieved as well.

By Lisa Cherry  author of Unmask the Predators

Image courtesy of Adrian van Leen

By Lisa Cherry

Here’s my precious granddaughter, Kyla Grace (age 10 months), all smiles in the arms of her mommy Kalyn during our trip to the Smoky Mountains. 

It was her first family vacation, and she had lots of fun with her cousins, aunts, uncles, parents and grandparents.

But Kyla was not so happy during the last two hours of our trip home.

She cried, and cried, and cried some more. 

During the second hour of her loud serenade, I was prompted to add two more items to the list in my last post:

 11. Just laugh when the grandbaby is the one driving everyone’s nerves raw. She is not your responsibility and she doesn’t want Grammy right now anyway!

12. Make sure you keep extra control of your teenagers when babies are crying. Baby screaming makes for teen screaming….and they are my responsibility!

Don't miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, Part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 4: Record Bike Ride

Ten Lessons This Mom Learned on Family Vacation This Year, Cherry Family Vacation, Part 5

Linking up to Women Living WellHearts 4 Home,  Beautiful Thursdays, and Just for Fun Fridays.

By Lisa Cherry

Another one has come and gone…

…A wonderful week of sharing life with my whole family in an exotic cabin in the Smoky Mountains.

As I write this, we are in the van on our way home, in the final two hours of what should be have been a seven hour drive.  So far it’s taken us 9 ½ hours. 

I have decided to record my top lessons for other moms who still might have their vacation ahead of them this year.

    1. Always pack your Quaker Oatmeal canister yourself where you can keep a mom-eye on it.  Eight cups of oatmeal sprinkled generously throughout your possessions in the trailer is not a pretty sight.
    2. Take extra towels. For some reason the cabin was not exactly equipped for 18.
    3. Remember to check the weather forecast before you plan your daily outings. Unless, of course, you want a front row parking place at the mountain top view when visibility has reduced to about five feet.
    4. Ear plugs are a must. You never can tell when those young ones will all decide to howl about their new surroundings.
    5. Bring extra bread. That way if the kids want to feed some to the birds or fish, you will not feel grumpy about it.
    6. Walk hand in hand with your sweetie as you gaze over at your brood. Smile and realize that every moment as a family is a precious reward from the Lord.
    7. Learn to enjoy squeeze cheese. It’s bland, artificially flavored and is horrible for you, but nothing screams vacation food like that little can.
    8. You can never pack too many baby wipes. Even though my youngest is five, we are addicted to them.
    9. Find a way to exercise every day, so when you realize you have lived a whole week in carb overloading, you can at least comfort yourself with the fact that you tried.
    10. Enjoy every single memory. Even the squabbles and even the spills. As the children get older, you will wish for these noisy days again!

Don't miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, Part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 4: Record Bike Ride

Baby Kyla's Serenade: Cherry Family Vacation Part 6 (Addenda to Ten Lessons)

Linked up with Top Ten Tuesday  and Works for Me Wednesday.

By Lisa Cherry

A record 11 mile ride around Cade's Cove in the Smoky Mountains for little Lydia...with a little help from Daddy and brother Nathan.

Don’t miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!

I was cleaning out my dresser last week when I ran across some papers I had hidden in the back of the drawer.

They were the dialogues we found nine years ago in our computer’s history—the sordid record of how a 46-year-old family friend wormed his way into the heart of our then 15-year-old daughter Kalyn.

My heart sank as I read those sickening words once again. I love your beautiful hair was intertwined with sweetie and I love you.  My stomach churned afresh as I read it. I suddenly remembered why I had hidden them back in the deepest corner for no one to see.

As the Sandusky trial begins this week, I was not a bit surprised at the news today of the "love letters" that would be presented by the victims as evidence of Mr. Sandusky's illegal activity. I remember hoping that those same internet letters I had buried in my drawer would have been entered in our court proceedings.

I wanted to scream to the jury, "Can you not see how this man tricked my child? His subtle tactics of attention, flattery and ‘neediness’ lured her into his web of deceit?! Her teenage mind was defenseless against his charm."

I can only imagine what the victims and their families are going through as they enter into the world's stage. Will their stories be believed? Will the public laugh at the manipulation that defiled their young souls?

I am sure we will in the coming days hear more of the grisly details than we need to hear. But before we just sensationalize the plot for the sake of sordid entertainment, perhaps we could redeem some of the proceedings for the Lord's purposes.

Perhaps we, as parents, will come to recognize what my husband and I did not understand...the trail of missed clues of the grooming behaviors that would have uncovered the predator in our midst.

I will be watching this case and praying. Watching to learn and praying for both the victims in Pennsylvania as well as the victims hidden in every corner of the globe. Will you join me?

Perhaps your family has been touched in some way with the tragedy of abuse. If so, I want to hear from you. I believe the Lord is calling us together to say...NO MORE!

By Lisa Cherry, author of Unmask the Predators: The Battle to Protect Your Child

Watch the trailer.

Linking up with Living Well Wednesdays, Thought Provoking Thursday, Deep Roots at Home, Weekend Whatever, and Visionary Link up.