Archives For sexual predators

child-438373_640
We have never done this before.

We have assembled a team of experts to teach parents how to keep kids safe from sexual predators.

Next week, October 27-31, we will hear from them during:

National Sexual Abuse Prevention Week for Homeschoolers

I have studied this issue for years... and yet, as I have talked to these leaders, I have already learned so many new things!

Please—will you give this your attention? And pass it on to your friends?

I believe we must continue to update our education as our children grow and mature.... and as we see our culture slipping into darkness.

While we are marketing this event to a homeschool audience, these speakers will be teaching all of us what we need to know.

The government will not be our best protections for our kids. Parents and concerned leaders will

Laws and enforcement are important… but prevention is the key!

Choose the sessions that are most interesting to you and listen in live, or access the sessions in the archive afterward at frontlinefamilies.org.

Check out this list of topics:

Monday, October 27
3:00 p.m. EDT
2:00 p.m. CDT
1:00 p.m. MDT
12:00 noon PDT
Sexual Abuse Protection 101 for Homeschoolers -Stephanie Adams, MA, LPC What homeschoolers must know now to keep kids safe. StephanieAdams will expound on the principles she taught on the article published recently on HSLDA’s website, The Safety Principles: Defending Children from Sexual Abuse. Do not assume you already know the basics! Some of the issues related to this problem will astound you. 
Monday, October 27
8:00 p.m. EDT
7:00 p.m. CDT
6:00 p.m. MDT
5:00 p.m. PDT
Why Is the Issue of Sexual Abuse so Complicated (and Heated!) in the Homeschool Community Today? - Doug and Lisa Cherry, and Kalyn Cherry Waller, authors Unmask the Predators: The Battle to Protect Your Child This session will take a sensitive, honest look at the unique challenges faced by homeschoolers when dealing with problems of sexual perversities and abuses. Why are the accusations of “abuse” among homeschoolers bringing strife, confusion and division to our homeschool community? The issues are complex….but the answers are not. From their unique vantage point of having suffered sexual abuse trauma and legal battles, the Cherry family of Frontline Family Ministries will lead a discussion on the central issue at hand. Be ready to call in with your questions and comments!
Tuesday, October 28
3:00 p.m. EDT
2:00 p.m. CDT
1:00 p.m. MDT
12:00 noon PDT
The Grooming Mystery - Angela Williams, Founder of Voice Today Abusers use secret strategies to trick their child and teen victims.  That is why even intelligent children, teens and adults can get tricked by the people that they trust!! Learn what Doug and Lisa Cherry did not know about grooming that allowed a sexual predator access to their homeschooled child. Angela Williams has developed a clear, concise training into this topic that must be mastered if we are to successfully protect our kids! 
Tuesday, October 28
8:00 p.m. EDT
7:00 p.m. CDT
6:00 p.m. MDT
5:00 p.m. PDT 
Healing Wounded Hearts - Dr. Diane Langberg, PhD, author of Counseling Survivors of Sexual Abuse and On the Threshold of Hope: Opening the Door to Healing for Survivors of Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse wounds ignored are buried alive…only to damage lives and relationships later. Finding proper help is critical for God’s healing power to be released so that lives can be restored. In this sensitive discussion Dr. Diane Langberg will reveal common side effects of sexual abuse and point to successful paths of restoration for child, teen and adult victims.
Wednesday, October 29
3:00 p.m. EDT
2:00 p.m. CDT
1:00 p.m. MDT
12:00 noon PDT
Protecting Our Children by Recognizing How Sexual Predators Think and Act - Boz Tchividjian, Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (G.R.A.C.E.), Professor of Law, Liberty University School of LawSexual predators can sneak into our lives and our communities. When we recognize their patterns of behavior, we can successfully stop them before they hurt our kids. Do you know your legal rights and responsibilities for protecting the children you know and love? Boz Tchividjian, as one of the most sought-after experts in his field, will give us the latest recommendations for our families as well as our churches and ministries.
Wednesday, October 29
8:00 p.m. EDT
7:00 p.m. CDT
6:00 p.m. MDT
5:00 p.m. PDT
The Swimsuit Lesson - Jon Holsten, author of The Swimsuit Lesson: Helping Parents Protect Their Children from Sexual PredatorsAs a former investigator and a loving dad, Jon Holsten knows that explaining to young children about sexual boundaries is critical. Jon’syears of law enforcement experienceand his book The Swimsuit Lesson will help you talk to your young children. What he teaches dispels fear while it advances safety.
Thursday, October 30
3:00 p.m. EDT
2:00 p.m. CDT
1:00 p.m. MDT
12:00 noon PDT
The 5 Proven Steps to Protecting our Kids - Elizabeth Warren, national leader in the field of child sexual abuse prevention educationAs director of one of the most successful organizations in America in developing strategies to protect children from abuse, Elizabeth Warren, National Programs Manager of Darkness to Light (D2L) has a wealth of information to share with homeschoolers. She will help us design a custom plan for our families that will keep us on our toes and equipped for every new environment our children encounter. Take advantage of her depth of knowledge! 
Thursday, October 30
8:00 p.m. EDT
7:00 p.m. CDT
6:00 p.m. MDT
5:00 p.m. PDT 
Teaching our Kids Self Protection Skills - Alli Neal, Co-Founder of Revved Up KidsWe can give our children and teens tools to defend themselves! Learning how to stay alert to danger and how to handle a would-be abuser is essential knowledge for today’s kids if they are to live safely and confidently in a world with unique dangers.  Alli Neal of Revved Up Kids will inspire you with her enthusiasm.
Friday, October 31
3:00 p.m. EDT
2:00 p.m. CDT
1:00 p.m. MDT
12:00 noon PDT 
Keeping Our Kids Safe Online - Luke Gilkerson, Covenant Eyes: Internet and Accountability FilteringParents today know the dangers lurking online to hurt their families….but they often feel powerless in supervising all the electronic devices that come into their families’ possession. Luke Gilkerson knows the facts we need to know, and he understands the strategies that will help us keep our kids safe. This session is also for you if you or your family members have already been entrapped in the snare of pornography…..and need a way out. 
Friday, October 31
8:00 p.m. EDT
7:00 p.m. CDT
6:00 p.m. MDT
5:00 p.m. PDT
Help! How Do I Talk to My Kids About Sex When I Am Nervous! - Julie Hiramine, founder and executive director of Generations of Virtue, mom and authorWe all want our children to internalize Godly values about sexuality. But that means we must be the ones to talk about these tough topics! How can we as homeschooling parents successfully build a communication and discipleship system in our homes that will be both God honoring and successful? Julie Hiramine from Generations of Virtue can help us gain a voice of confidence.

Here is a blog I was featured in this week in anticipation of the event:

Sexual Abuse Prevention Week for Homeschoolers

child female red shirt 2967436281_f5fdd9285a

When we discovered Kalyn had been sexually abused, I was totally stunned. We had always been so careful!  I could not believe that we could have been tricked.

Sadly, there were so many things about "grooming" behaviors that predators use that we did not know!

That is why I am so passionate to spare other families this pain. So here are 10 key facts about this mysterious thing called "grooming" that I wish I had known…

1. Grooming is the process used by predators to desensitized a victim.
Victims of sexual abuse do not usually perceive a way to escape. So they go along with the most horrible sexual acts of a perpetrator without getting help.

2. Grooming is a gradual process.
Here is a good short article  that describes the stages and methods of the technique. Understand the process so you can detect it! (Then read Kalyn's story to your kids so they can see how it happened to a real person.)

3. Grooming is hard to recognize.
When we went to the police in our case, they assured us that even the most astute observers can be tricked!

4. Grooming has a voice.
The victims are trapped by predictable words of flattery, manipulation, and threat. Read some of these words to your kids.

5. Grooming works even on "smart people."
Because it is a psychological/spiritual process, it can work past the gate of normal intellect.

6.  Grooming behaviors often involve an adult who is living on a teen or child level.
Predators often live in a child/teen world by playing, interacting, and talking as one of the "cool insider adults." They will break rules and hide the activities from the other adults in supervision.

7.  Adults and leaders who are supposed to be protecting kids and teens are often groomed first....before the victim.
Predators are often the most helpful, easy going, high functioning adults that you least expect. So it is easy to dismiss odd behaviors and fall into their deceptive trap.

8.  When a victim has been groomed to cooperate, they feel powerless to get help...but they are not powerless!
Kids and teens need to know you will always believe them and help them if they ever have a problem. They are not powerless with you on their side.

9.  Not everyone who is friendly and nice to our kids is grooming a victim, but our kids need to hear from us that we want to hear about all uncomfortable, suspicious behavior they observe.
No one wants to be a tattle tale, especially on a trusted adult. So we must build a relationship with our kids where it is okay to share all concerns even if they prove to be ungrounded.

10.  Ultimately only adults can protect teens and kids from sexual grooming behaviors.
Never depend on your child to recognize something that even experts say is tough to see.  Do the training, and talk to your kids, and most important, be alert and watchful.  Check out our book Unmask the Predators for help in designing plans to keep your kids safe in this sexually perverse culture.

Begin an ongoing conversation with your kids today about this incredibly important issue!

Do you know a friend who could use this help also? The more we spread the word, the more eyes and ears become alert to these dangers in your own community of people.

Image: Erin Blatzer: “Concentration: via Flickr Creative Commons
License: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Gratefully linked to:
List It {Tuesday}
Wholehearted Home Wednesday
Faith Filled Friday

Related posts:
The Top 10 Things I Wish I Had Known about Child Sexual Predators Before it Happened to our Family

An Open Letter to My Fellow Homeschool Parents: Sexual Predator Accusations Among Homeschoolers?
Why We Called the Police and Why You Should Also

Parents Take Drastic Action; Teachers Defend Sexual Predator

 moat 158970271_86f9c296b5

I received this letter from a Frontline Mom last week:  (She said I could let you read her letter here.) 

Hello! I'm a homeschooling mom. I have recently been reading and learning about preventing all kinds of danger and abuse of children. I have a question about the subject of grooming. I really would like to be able to spot the difference between grooming behavior and typical close family friendship.

My husband and I believe that our family needs to be close to other Christians outside our family. We are part of both a church and a homeschool group that get together regularly in small groups in members' homes….

How do we grow close friendships with other families while still being confident that our children are safe playing outside our eyesight? How can we be sure our children are safe to play at even our closest friends' houses if we are not there?

A lot of what I read about the grooming process sounds like I cannot even trust my own gut and experience with people.

Thanks for your help!

I think she is asking some great questions, how about you?

Here are some of my best tips I want to give to our friend.

Dear S.:

I so appreciated your heartfelt requests! I think I can understand what you are saying.

Kalyn's sexual abuse totally shook my world. As I worked to recover our family, I thought for a while that the best strategy was to build a big moat around our home and pull up the drawbridge. But somehow that idea did not pan out for me! :)

I quickly discovered that fear, paranoia and hysteria were not helpful parenting motivators...  and were actually causing me to make errors in judgment. So instead, I adopted more reasonable approach. Here are 5 Important Strategies that helped me stay in balance.

1. Learn, learn, learn

Honestly, I did not know what I did not know about predators. I didn't understand that adults, if they are to pick up on the subtle grooming behaviors of predators, need to be saturated in the issue to the point where their senses are sharpened.

Read the stories. Learn the common tactics predators use with children, teens and adults. Learn the facts. And then after you have studied, link up to someone who calls your attention to the issue on a frequent basis, so it keeps the issue sharp in your mind and heart. (I can help you with that here on Frontline Moms and Dads. Start with our book Unmask the Predators. Read our posts and also click here for other websites to continue your education.)

2.  Build a team

One of the best strategies for deterring sexual abuse is to raise the standards in the groups your family frequents. You mention having groups of families who fellowship together. How about having a training meeting in your group? Bringing the issue into the light intentionally will raise the "bar of safety." Responsible, godly adults who study the issue will recognize the danger and then willingly submit to protective policies, because they care about all the children in the group.  No one wants our most vulnerable ones to be in danger of abuse!

Obviously, this is not the total answer.  Predators are known to infiltrate organizations where children are, and they will look for ways to violate your trust.   But when it is known that all the adults are on the lookout for suspicious behavior and everyone has pre-decided to report anything that is truly amiss, there is a degree of deterrence!

3.  Stay alert

In my book Unmask the Predators, chapter 12 is “26 Keys for Protecting Your Child from Sexual Predators.”

Key #2 is: Maintain a Watch List.  Please allow me to explain. In my previous way of thinking before Kalyn’s abuse, I would scan around me and classify people as either safe or dangerous—2 categories. But I understand now that this mindset can get us into trouble.  It can cause us to not to notice certain behaviors we should in a person we have already declared "safe."

Instead, now I am always watching. I just see what I need to see. I am always evaluating. I am NOT always expecting to see a problem. But I do not throw out data. I maintain alertness in accordance with 1 Peter 5:8.

4.  Sacrifice

Learning how to have safe standards in group settings is one thing. But putting them into practice consistently is another! I like the convenience of just putting one teenager in charge of a group of kids. But if I do that, I automatically increase risk to my program. So that means more manpower is required, which means more sacrifice. Sometimes the sacrifice is noise control when we need to leave kids in a room with us because we did not have a safe alternative.

I really appreciate the training programs of the insurance company our church uses. They can equip your group for safety. Check them out here.....and remember they only work with sacrifice!

5.  Pray and rest

Ultimately, only the Lord can carry this burden for us and keep our kids safe. Finding my own place of rest and faith was critical for me. As I maintain safety standards, I am regularly praying...

Lord, I pray that anything hiding in the darkness, You would bring to the light. Help me to see and know what I need to know. Protect our children from wolves in sheep's clothing. I plead the blood of Jesus over them and command every evil thing to stay away. In Jesus' Name!

Now as I pray, I match it with faith. God is at work! And my job is to trust and rest.

I hope those thoughts are some help! Let's stay in this fight for our kids' sake and the sake of a generation.

Love,

Lisa

Image: Will “The moat and drawbridge of Hever Castle”  via Flickr Creative Commons
License: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

arrow up 3015467328_611a487a48

Something amazing happened here last week.

I published my  article An Open Letter to My Fellow Homeschool Parents: Sexual Predator Accusations Among Homeschoolers?   

NOW 29,708 have read it already. And the number is growing every day!

Many of you are now new subscribers to Frontline Moms and Dads as a result of this article. Welcome! Take a look around and let's get acquainted.

We want you to feel at home here as we all grow together and tackle those STICKY SUBJECTS of parenting!

Over the next few days I will be posting follow up articles to the Open Letter. Many of you have messaged me with questions that I will be turning into articles that will help us all.

I am so encouraged! I truly believe we can make a difference as we educate ourselves and resist the forces trying to damage our children.

For the rest of my readers, I’ll say this:  Sexual predators are a danger for all children—those in public schools, Christian schools and homeschools alike.  No matter where your children are educated, I encourage you to learn all that you can about how to protect your kids.

If you haven't done it yet, would you help us spread this Open Letter even further by:

1. Sharing the link with several homeschooling friends

2. Forwarding the link to homeschool coop group leaders and state homeschool convention  leaders.

3. Share it with the homeschool bloggers you know.

After watching the online world this past week, I am even more convinced of the importance of this message. So number 4 would be....

4. Pray. We need the Lord's wisdom and protection. We also have many families who have contacted us who need healing from the effects of this dreadful problem of abuse.

5. So FINALLY....Get the resources you and your family need.

 If you are reading this post, we want to offer you a coupon code to receive a free Kalyn's Story DVD for your pre-teen/teen for every Unmask the Predator book you order. Use the code word "family" when you order from our store and we will ship the free DVD with your order. (Please know that we put all proceeds from our resources back into the ministry to help families!)

Talk to you next week when we handle....

How to Protect Your Kids From Predators...without Becoming Paranoid!

Image: Tom Magliery “Arrow” via Flickr Creative Commons
License: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Related posts:

An Open Letter to My Fellow Homeschool Parents: Sexual Predator Accusations Among Homeschoolers?  

Why We Called the Police and Why You Should Also

middle school 490772308_3352658e56

By Lisa Cherry

 The man was labeled a pedophile. He was a middle school math teacher who repeatedly molested one of his students. He’s now serving a 15 to 30 year sentence in the Michigan Department of Corrections.

It was a life-altering tragedy for the victim and his family

And the article about this case caught my attention: Student exodus in Michigan school district where teachers defended child molester Did you see it?

Even after the teacher was convicted of the crime, many of his fellow teachers and school officials defended the man....to the point where the parents in the school district took drastic actions.

Why would I call this story to your attention?  Four reasons:

First to continue to issue a strong alert about watching over our precious kids in this new school year, in a world where too many are being damaged by sexual predators.

Second, to encourage you to consider the decisive actions taken by these concerned parents—and judge

Sometimes it is hard and lonely to stand for the right to protect our kids. Sometimes we may even have to sacrifice and suffer.

Third, to stand strong with our fellow Christians who are teachers and administrators. Many of them are facing increasingly difficult situations in this spiritual culture war.

Fourth, to remind us how difficult it is for people to label someone as a dangerous person ....even when they are faced with overwhelming evidence.

Apparently the parents in the Michigan school district meant to send a loud message to their school district of no tolerance for sexual perversion.

Could we pray for the victim and his family, their school, and families affected by the case (including the perpetrator's family) even as we listen for the Lord's counsel for how to protect our kids?

Image by Luz “Nouveau Pershing Middle School”
License: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Related posts:

The Top 10 Things I Wish I Had Known about Child Sexual Predators Before it Happened to our Family
The Penn State Sexual Abuse Nightmare: How Could This Happen? Let Me Tell You…
Beware: Sodomy Hazing Somehow Called “Normal”!

Linked to The Better Mom

Welcome Home Wednesday

Proverbs 31 Thursdays

Encourage One Another