We often think that pedophiles and rapists are easily distinguished from their physical appearances. So, we think that kids might easily spot one and run away. However, it is too good to be true.
Sexual predators live among us, they have a job, wear appropriately, talk to us, come to our houses over dinner; they are friends, colleagues and family, males and females. Once we have established this fact. Spotting one is like finding a needle in a haystack.
While they might be portrayed as impulsive entities lacking the ability to control their thoughts or behaviors (which is sometimes true), science proves the opposite. Many are in control of their mental faculties and are rational decision makers. “Sexual Predators and Prey: A Comparative Study of the Hunting Behavior of Rapists and Child Molesters”.
However, there are cues that we can look for in order to avoid one. We should pay close attention to acquaintances that try to establish rapport with our kids in our presence. This is quite dangerous because we give credibility to this person and the kids trust them. Colleagues or family members that inquire a lot about our kids usually raise a red flag. Avoid people with history. Sometimes a predator might admit that they have been wrongly accused of molesting, history repeats itself. Don’t mention that you have kids to strangers, they don’t need to know.
What is ironic and nerve-racking is the fact that in Morocco it’s quite easy to get away with child rape than with consensual sex with a member of the opposite sex. It’s culturally inappropriate for a couple to have sex outside wedlock. Therefore, people in the neighborhood easily spot a couple trying to have sex. They gather and try to kick them out of the house or even call the police. On the other hand, a man carrying a kid or holding their hand luring them into his place doesn’t raise any suspicions at all, it’s a normal scene.
Parents must keep an eye on their kids all the time. Never trust their kids with anyone. In addition to that, schools, NGO’s and the Media should sensitize kids about the dangers of talking to strangers through different campaigns and programs.