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Children are not able to detect the Abnormal often

What can parents do to protect their children from abuse? And how can you create a culture of open communication in which children do not conceal what was done to them? A child psychiatrist gives advice.

Interview by Ralf Wiegand

in The case of abuse of Lügde upset many parents. Ask yourself: Would we notice if our child fell victim to a sex offender? What are the weaknesses, take advantage of the perpetrator and how parents correct their children should deal, explains to the children's psychiatrist Renate Schepker.

SZ: After the fall at the campsite in Lügde the question of how such a thing can happen shall be once again. Professor Schepker, do you have an answer, there is a pattern to the abuse of children, met a again and again?

Renate Schepker: The perpetrators are looking for children who are from very different reasons, misused. Either because of a large, unquenched father attitude out of longing or out of a fearful-submissive, there are many constellations - disabled children, for example, are more at risk. The offenders meet other needs of the children, they are often empathetic people who delude themselves that the child wants the same as you. It is your own pathological dynamics.

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What is the effect of such a perpetrator's behavior on the children?

It creates a second reality. So much so that children think it's normal what is happening with you. The perpetrators try, the children convince the would all do. It would be nice. The most Normal thing in the world. And that you have but really love. This is the reason why abuse especially in the family context for years can continue: children are not able to detect the Abnormal mind.

What people do not understand: In the case in Lügde, a large number of children over a long period of time was affected. None of the parents noticed something. How can the

We know this constellation of other contexts, from children's choirs, scout communities, training groups, in which often a number of ways children are abused by adults miss. The parents send their children to be happy in this community. Often parents react to a hidden message to the children in the way that you do not want to hear more now.

For example?

When the child comes home and says: not Today but it was so beautiful, the parents say, but Actually, it is nice there, go on back, go for it. Instead of at this point to ask, what was today's Special. It is no reproach to the parents, something like this happens in everyday life. Children pull back quickly in a worm house.

This can confirm the statement of the offender, that the child will, in any case, no one believed. How can parents prevent this?

I would like to have experienced knowledge, as parents, as of the day of my child - no matter what the child or where it was. It is very, very important that parents have time to listen to children and to share what you have experienced, even if the children go alone anywhere. The most important prevention is a culture of open dialogue and an active interest of the parents in what the children are doing. The second is a culture of open communication about everything that has to do with sexuality. The children need to feel that there is no speech, taboos, and that you can talk about everything. In addition, early education is important.

at what age should educate the children?

Once you are in the primary school age, you should know where children come from and what sex parts are in there. It starts in Kindergarten, children ask for it. Unfortunately, we are experiencing more and more often that parents rely on nursery and school. Or do you believe that your child is still too young and you want to keep it rather "childlike innocence", as they say. Children get the feeling that there are taboo zones. Then, if an offender says, since you are talking anyway don't think about it, it can be reinforced.

How do I warn a child against dangers, without scaring him?

You can talk with a child about the fact that there are people who prey on children and they think it's normal, without that it is normal. You can talk to if something happens at home. The ideal situation is that you do not need to emphasize the in the first place. The ideal situation is that children know that their parents believe them anyway, more than any other people. A child needs to know that the parents are there to protect, especially, what the world has to offer Harm. Parents should not leave their children in the Belief that there are no evil people in the world. Children should develop a large trust in their parents. You should say: My parents are of the scale, I can ask her anything. That is until puberty, the Ideal that no parent is reached, however, in the reality of few.

Why not?

parents always have a bad day, you always have other Concerns and the way to hear also from time to time. This is normal. But the reason to create trust is important. When such Attacks happen in the environment or in the newspaper, you can take the opportunity to talk with the children about. You don't need to threaten with the "strange man lurking in the bushes" or the man with the candies, you should not go, that brings nothing, because it is mostly good Known to the offender. Because you have to go a bit deeper, so that the child understands that no child must participate, what feels weird, no matter who demands it of him.

What is most important when children are the victims of?

It is important for children that there is a law enforcement. This is the strongest means in our society to distinguish between right and wrong. The wrong consciousness is confused with the children by the offender, Yes, in a targeted manner. It is not for children at the same time important that you blame yourself. This happens very often. Because you have to stand out in interviews that there may be between children and adults is not a symmetrical relationship. It is always the adult who is in a position of power, and it is always the child that is taken advantage of. It can have no debt.

Why give to children?

children want to help all of you have a very nice page. You want it to go all good faith, to be responsible for it. Enter, for example, is the debt, if the parents do not argue, even if you are not of the occasion. When it comes to the question of sexual abuse, you have to relieve you. This can also happen by the fact that perpetrators confess to their acts and comprehensive statements.

The main suspect of Lügde is silent, however.

Basically, it is the responsibility of the perpetrators, to relieve the children at least by a statement and save you, for example, stressful interrogations.

Prof. Renate Schepker was involved in the founding of the first German Trauma clinic in Ravensburg. There are now such facilities in several cities in Baden-Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia. The address of the nearest trauma clinic can be obtained from the police Department; the help also provides the medical child protection hotline ( under the number 0800 19 210 00. It is staffed around the clock.

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