Conflicting Nature of Good/Bad Touch, Pt 2

Does sexual repression correlate with sexual abuse? Does sexual ignorance correlate with sexual abuse? Does teaching people an educated, informed, empowered and healthy sense of sexuality aide in the annihilation of sexual abuse?

I am no expert but here are my follow up thoughts to my previous post, The Conflicting Nature of Good Touch/Bad Touch. I write it to my sisters.

Bianca,

I’m sick of people saying we need to teach children the difference between good touch and bad touch. Honestly in a lot of cases, “bad touch” feels good. So if you are younger like our baby sister Dasia, how are you to know the difference? When I think bad touch, I imagine someone beating me. Someone sexually abusing me is not like a beating. Sexual abuse is sometimes physically more like sex and less like someone beating you with a stick. So if I were Dasia’s age, 5, how am I to know?

~Is bad touch based on what I feel? That’s not helpful since it sometimes feel good.

~Is bad touch based on the location of the touch? That’s not helpful since there are sound reasons to be touched in those private areas. For example, if a doctor is touching you there or you are touching your ownself there. (Whoops, did I just promote masturbation?)

~Is bad touch based on who is touching you? We are taught Stranger Danger but ANYONE could be the culprit.

Perhaps its a combo of all there. Inappropriate sexual touch is determined by who is touching you where and how that makes you feel. But I suppose you have to take in cultural and legal norms too. Even  combining those three things is not enough. You could be 16 and he could be 30 and you like him, and he makes you feel like heaven and you love when he touches you in just the right spot.

Unfortunately, that is still abuse. It’s called statutory rape. In some places.

In other places, its called a standard marriage.

There are far too many layers to this whole sexual epidemic. I’m willing to peel back some of the layers though. It doesn’t scare me that I’m not at the core yet. What scares me is the not enough people are working on peeling back those layers.

Bianca, you are 16 and whether or not others agree, perhaps you are at the age where you are further exploring your sexuality. Note..sexuality doesn’t mean sex! Sex is just one aspect of sexuality. At 16 years old there are aspects of sexuality that should be explored. Yes, SHOULD BE.

But what about our 11 year old sister Hanna and our 5 year old sister Dasia? At that age NO ONE should be touching their vagina. No one should touch their undeveloped breast. No one should touch their buttocks. And even our brother, I suppose aside from himself, no one should be touching his penis.  I have heard far too many stories of 12 year old boys losing their virginity to women over the age of 18. That’s just disgusting.

That’s just it. Unless its a doctor. But even then, our mom should ALWAYS be present when they are being seen by a doctor. Aside from that no one younger or older than them should be touching them in any capacity. There is no excuse for anyone to ever touch them in those places.

But even writing that seems like its not enough. Sure those are the essentials but really its your whole body. No one should touch your body unless you give them EXPLICIT permission to do so.

I remember being young and when some adults would want to hug me or kiss my cheek, I’d make a face. However my parents would tell me to stop being disrespectful and hug the family member or let the nice adult kiss my cheeck. They meant no ill will.  I’m sure those adults, in that moment, were not abusers. But I didn’t want them touching me.

Parents, STOP MAKING YOUR KIDS give other adults permissions to touch them if they don’t want to. Even if they don’t have a reason. If you kid doesn’t want the neighbor to hug them, then leave it be! It seems like such a small thing. But if you tell them its disrespectful to reject a well meaning hug, how do you expect them to stand up to things that are worse than that?

Not only should no one touch you Bianca or our siblings, but they also shouldn’t insert anything in your mouth, vagina or buttocks. Some perps like to get away with that. They will insist they never had sex with the child, but what they did do was put things inside of them.  Objects. It’s graphic. I know. But I want to make sure you understand.

The problem is that we aren’t teaching enough. We may say don’t let anyone touch you. But what if they aren’t touching you? What if they are taking a stick and shoving it up your ass? What if they are taking a vibrator and inserting it into the vagina of an 11 year old? That’s not ok either. But if we don’t say it outloud, then how are children to know better?

A big thing I’m leaving out is that there comes a time in your life when these things are ok. When you are at an appropriate age, preferably over 18 and you are at a place in your journey of sexuality and you are in a consensual age appropriate relationship, it is then okay for your partner to touch you in those sacred places and if you both are that experimental, maybe you use objects and toys too.

But right now, is not the time for that.

There are important words to take from that. Age Appropriate. Consensual.

Here’s another thing Bianca. You should never feeel uneasy, unsure or uncomfortable right now. None of you should. If someone hugs you and it feels weird, talk about it with someone you trust. Maybe it was a bad thing. Or maybe it was a good thing. Point is, you won’t know unless its put out in the open and discussed without judgement and embarrasement.

You can never talk too much about issues of sexuality. Ask questions and talk about what’s going on. It’s not taboo.

This goes hand in hand with parents, schools, churches and or communities teaching and showing age appropriate examples of a healthy sexuality. If you teach a child or teen or young adult to never acknowledge their body; to never figure out or question or discover or debate issues of sexuality…when there is a time they are being taken advantage of, they won’t even know it. I had no clue at first that I was being sexually abused because I didn’t even know what sex was. I doubt I had even uttered the word vagina before. So how could I tell someone that my dad was touching mine.

These are just a few things I’ve been thinking about lately. What say you?

To read more, go to The Conflicting Nature of Good Touch/Bad Touch.

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Showing 2 comments
  • Louise Brookes
    Reply

    Brilliant. Wow, this article needs to be out there and discussed. I don’t know why such frank conversations can’t be had where they need to be had. If it’s not in the family home then at least it needs to be heard in communities/schools.
    Unfortunately when I was at school I found too many adults were equally uncomfortable talking about this, some tried but they had to do it through humour, when some things are very serious, but at least they tried.
    I had a friend who convicted his much older paedophile abuser at 14. He had a really difficult time because he was finding out he was gay, did fall for an older guy (who wasn’t the one who hurt him), but was still under age. The fact that he was also pimped by another young man and groomed by the much older guy who went to prison must have confused the hell out of him. On the one hand he was totally abused right at the time when he discovering his own sexuality and yet he understood what was Ok and not OK sufficiently to be able to say something and I think this had a lot to do with having a very supportive and protective family.
    ‘Consensual/un-consensual’ these words really need to form the foundations of the law. Frankly at any point when we are finally able to communicate that we didn’t want that, it should be heard and taken seriously. Another needed article Sheena, thanks. What a great sister/friend you are!

    • SLY
      Reply

      You are the best encourager ever. When ever I’m feeling down all I need to do is go back to your emails and notes and my spirit is lifted. COME TO THE US. We need you here.

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