Good Touch, Bad Touch - Know the Difference
Created by Lubna Updated on Dec 13, 2019
With increase in the cases of child sexual abuse and child abduction, every parent needs to be alert for the safety of their child. This calls for certain steps to be taken by the parent including teaching the child what kind of touch is acceptable and what is not.
What is Touch and Its Types?
Touch is a feeling which makes an individual feel good or bad. It is a means of contact and communication which has many forms like patting someone's back, holding hands, shaking hands, kissing forehead, cheek etc or beating someone, kicking someone etc. Let's talk about it and its types when it is about making a child comprehend its type - good or bad.
It is a touch that makes one feel safe. It involves actions like patting on the back, kissing on forehead, cheeks, holding hands, shaking hands, or running with each other holding hands. All these point towards harmony or well being.
It is a kind of touch that doesn't make a person feel good. It kind of hurts, as for example when someone beats you, kicks you, pulls your hair etc. At times, it makes one feel petrified. In addition to the ones mentioned above, there is a touch that involves private parts, bad intentions etc. For this, the child must be informed so that he/she knows what kind of touch is acceptable and what is not. Suggest Read: Ways to Educate Child to Protect From Molestation, sexual assualt
How to talk about good touch and bad touch with your child
But first, we as parents must take the responsibility of talking with the child about this clearly. We should sound confident and approach them with a completely clear and transparent concept of touch. It is our duty to teach the child the exact difference between good and bad touch so that the child knows how to interpret things, which shouldn't leave him/her in a muddled situation. For that, the approach from parent’s side needs to be correct.
First of all, speak to the child about "private parts". Parents shouldn't hesitate in speaking with the child about it in clear terms. Use the right terminology for the private parts such as breast, penis, hips etc. Explain to the child that these parts can be touched only by parents or someone who routinely takes care of the child and that too while cleaning them or giving bath. If others try to touch them (or even people familiar to them touch these parts without a reasonable cause), they have the right to say " NO". Give the child full authority of his / her own body.
How the child can ask for help:
- Shout loudly and say a firm No. This way of expressing dislike about a particular incidence requires courage that needs to be imparted by the parents.
- They need not be frightened about anything and should be clear in saying that " I shall report this thing to my parents, grandparents" or whoever is close to them.
- Inform the child that if someone tries to tell him to keep certain acts as secrets, never to do so.
- Most important of all, if your child tries to convey such things to you, please trust your child. Be vigilant about his/her surroundings. Take the child in your confidence and communicate.
As parents, the safest way to keep your child safe, is to empower the child with the right knowledge, and also have a very trusting relationship with him where he can confide in you for anything (remember research shows that most cases of abuse happen by people known to the child rather than total strangers!)
So, proper education is essential and initiative has to be taken by us. Let's not wait for the right time, let's start it right now.
| Jul 05, 2016
@Punjal- the time when kid is able to understand things, it should be started then gradually. Its like how we make kid teach parts of body, eyes, ear, nose etc, we must start focussing on this as well. Lt varies from kids to kids. Ideally, before the child goes to pre-school, we must try to teach kid about it.
| Jul 15, 2016
@Varuna- the time when kid is able to understand things, it should be started then gradually. Its like how we make kid teach parts of body, eyes, ear, nose etc, we must start focussing on this as well. It varies from kids to kids. Ideally, before the child goes to pre-school, we must try to teach kid about it.
| Aug 16, 2016
thank u for sharing these useful tip s.. but one thing i would like yo ask u that.. if someone is following our child and trying to do something bad and our child after knowing all this.. says No and like u said "i will report to my parents". I think would this type of movement will led her to a life risk?? culprit can do anything with our child. Actually what should be the right for our child in that situation ...our kids are our world.. so what would be appropriate..
| Aug 31, 2016
Hi Lubna Thankyou for this blog. It is extremely important to empower the child with knowledge to protect him/her from any such incident. However i think we also need to know when is the appropriate age to talk about these things considering a child as young as 2 or 3 years are also sometimes susceptible to untoward incident. What according to you should be the right age to educate the child?
| Sep 17, 2017
Very valuable information, thank you Mam. But again I want to ask one question that, in our families and friends there are members who, Pat on the hips, of our children and pull their pants down in front of everyone,pinch on the hips etc,... And what is the reason explained by them is because they are doing mischief. This is a common thing, if I'm not wrong in our families.. At this content being a mother when I look my child's face he is blank... he don't know what to say, whom to say, the action done is by family member with a smile, so is it normal... But still I can see little embrassment in child's face. Some times the grandparents say "Arey hamara to mazak ka rista Hai n all"So how can we stop this, awareness is also necessary for elder members of family. As small children will be confused in learning bad touch and got touch. And also cannot differentiate either they are abused or not by some close members.