It can be frightening how little a parent may know about what is going on with their teen or preteen and the number of insidious ways in which predators can get at their children.
A story that recently emerged that of a young girl who had been subject to online grooming since the age of 12 which, at the age of 17 has left her so scarred that she is unable to speak with or look directly at people.
Child grooming is the term used to define actions deliberately undertaken with the aim of befriending and establishing an emotional connection with a child, in order to lower the child’s inhibitions in preparation for child sexual abuse.
Through social networking sites such as Facebook and the like, it is possible for sexual predators and pedophiles to gain access to children. Once contact is established, the predator can then initiate inappropriate or abusive chat sessions or induce the child to act out inappropriate acts by way of webcam.
It is shocking to know that one in twelve children who make friends with strangers or online, then go on to meet those strangers in person.
For this reasons it is vital that communication between parents and their children remain constantly open so that they are able to explain the dangers that lurk online and the ways in which predators could prey upon unsuspecting children.