The Vulnerable Child and the Paedophile

Economic situation has dragged many mothers away from their homes to their workplaces, and as such, majority of working mothers have little or barely no choice in leaving their children either alone or under the custody of someone they trust.


The abuse of trust seems to have widespread beyond reasonable thinking. What does it mean to have confidence in someone enough to put one’s child under that person’s care? Giving a succinct response to this might render it simpler for the ordinary reader but, viewing this from a deeper perspective. Perhaps, this might be better.The fact is that anyone can trust anyone as long as anyone knows the other person well enough to count on them. Often it may be the other way round, which is, one does not need to be informed about the other person for a lengthy period of time before trusting them.


If no one trusts anymore, then we would have a bleak, darker world of negativity. We learn how to trust and trust everyday since we do not cease to meet new people, make new friends and travel to places where we settle, temporarily or permanently, with the inhabitants.


How do we explain it in the case of a custodian abusing the child(ren)? A broken trust? A cheat?


Also what about children left alone to look after themselves while their mothers are busied away at work, and some deranged older men chase after these children for sex? Lunatics? Paedophiles? Sociopaths? Don’t we think we have a serious social disorder when the nooks and corners of our streets, offices buildings, et cetera, are jam-packed with paedophiles?


Children are deemed to believe in adult quickly. Just like pets believe that their owners are never going to abandon them (which, of course, happens every day), children have undaunted faith in their parents, school teachers, pastors, sport leaders, and any adults in their lives. No child is going to consider beforehand that the game leader, the neighbour, the school teacher or the music band leader are sexual molesters.


Who then is a paedophile? Despite numerous definition, it is extremely challenging denoting the image of this character because he is likely to be that soft-spoken, easy going chap down the street, the merry-going cashier in that grocery store across the church, the lovely father of adorable children, the generous businessman, the handsome sportsman, the comic taxi-driver on 42 avenue, the school-bus driver, the librarian, the promising politician, the pastor of evangelical church, the priest in a catholic church, just to name of few. It is never written on a man’s head that he is a paedophile. 95% of them are moving around among us unnoticed. He comes from all races — African, African-american, European, Asian, and all states of life.


During a Conversation Circle theme on trafficking and migration at the last CSW58 in New York, a woman suggested that we need to get to know the mind of the perpetrators, to understand what trigger their acts in order to know why they are doing whatever they are doing. Catharine Mackinnon asserts that ‘rape is rape’, akin must we learn to recognise that a paedophile is a paedophile.


Can we know the mind of a thief? Likewise we might be confronted with difficulties in our attempt to unveil the mind of paedophile.


Perhaps, since we cannot dig out all potential paedophiles in our world, we might consider shifting the focus on educating our children to avoid these dysfunctional men because, in retrospect, paedophiles are no different from medically-certified lunatics.


UNDERWEARRULE is one of the research projects on children that the Council of Europe set up to educate children, parents and guardians on prevention of child sexual abuse.


Teach your child the Underwear Rule!


 Child abuse




 Hopefully, this campaign, as well as others around the globe, helps us clean out and thwarts the intention of these malefactors.





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