Thursday, February 21, 2013

A Small Victory~




A particular hour of evening
when colors of shadows
cluster on the windowsills
a stranger walked into our house, and 
 settled down; I pondered a while, then
asked my father who he was…
 "People like him are our heroes, the martyrs,
they've fought for the country, spent years
tied up in prison"…it was a curtain-raiser
for a girl of ten; listening to his stories was
like drowning a little at a time, what Originality n Voice!
With him I grew an intimacy that I never felt with anyone. I think today,
 the coup-de-grace that set me off would have made for great fictions.   
During one of the story-telling evenings, he took me to his room,
The room was dark, only calmer and gentler than other evenings
‘aren’t you cold?’, he asked, clasping my small hands into his fist
Warming them between his palm and lips; my hands were shying
he nibbled on my fingers, and let the other hand slide inside my frock
I cringed; kowtowing- fear capped me...his eyes had a eerie voyeurism
I remembered what everyone said:‘a heart of gold he has’…
 …if only, I could see it till the last day; his presence set my teeth on edge
 For valid reasons, the impregnable faith drifted away, unnoticed
haunted by his petting, I ran to my father
He held out an arm, sat me on his lap
I sat there heaving and puffing till peace re-assembled in heart
I didn't utter a word; but strangely had been artful..
For a few seconds he examined my face, and thrust me away
‘Go play with your dolls’, he said
The next day, the revolutionary was packed off
And I never saw him again.


Pedophilia can sometimes be a taboo topic. But it's often in the headlines. It is defined as a psychological disorder. It happens, on average, every 15 days! The reason we as a society define pedophiles as deviants is because they target innocent children. Abuse is painful, and it always will be…Protect your child...STOP PEDOPHILIA!

I am attached to an organization that helps children and women escape the horror of violence and abuse or the humiliation of neglect, poverty and homelessness. On my recent visit, I met this girl who is undergoing a therapy in a psychiatric clinic. She’s in her late teens now. Living with a constant abuser resulted in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A team of psychologists and experts are in the process of rehabilitating Mrinmoyee.

 “I am an abuse survivor.  When I was a child, I was exposed to a pedophile.  Then the pedophile used my body repeatedly, rendering me psychologically injured and scared.  He managed to engage me, groom me, and then use me… I didn’t have bruises, cuts, or burns.  I didn’t need medical attention or a hospital trip, but today I understand—it was no less than a rape. A man of my father’s age abused my body…”—said Mrinmoyee (name changed).




62 comments:

  1. A very sensitive topic which is always pushed under the wraps in our society. Mutual trust is very important here. Children' trust on their parents, so that they are not afraid to articulate their fear and parents's trust on their kids that whatever the kid is saying is true.

    Thanks a lot for raising this topic ma'am. It is good reminder to all the parents, 'keep you eyes open'

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    Replies
    1. Talking to children about safety and how to protect themselves from an early age is an important part of keeping children safe. A profile of a pedophile is so hard to identify.
      Thanks, Meenakshi.

      Delete
  2. Panchali di!

    disturbing facts that surround us, I heave, ponder and wonder why we often look for valid excuses to shadow such devils... Appreciate your social involvements.

    Wonderful play of words....as always!

    Novel...

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    1. It is disturbing, Akila...But, children who are confident and
      have good support from their parents are less likely to be targeted by child sex offenders...
      Thanks!!

      Delete
  3. Merely reading this account sends shivers down the spine,it is impossible to imagine what goes on in the victim's mind.
    Parents ought to listen to their children & watch them attentively.
    God should not allow this to happen.

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    1. Yes Indu, when I was listening to her stories...I was kinda shocked!These perverts need strong punishment! The pedophiles keep children silent by making them feel responsible for the sexual abuse. And see, this is what happens at last....! It is sad and truly shocking...
      Thanks!

      Delete
  4. How painful it must be for a child....Ya we should keep our eyes open!

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    Replies
    1. Yes..as mothers, we should be careful, Ranjana. Motherhood is the most difficult job!!
      Thanks !!

      Delete
  5. OMG ! Just feeling the anguish ....

    Travel India

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    1. Yes, Vishal--it aint easy!Thanks for showing your concern and sympathy. Do appreciate.
      Thanks!

      Delete
  6. When people try to put out the innocence of a child, no words can explain its pain. I'm greatly moved.

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    1. They are criminals--the worst kind I guess...!! How they lavish affection to assault a kid--beats me!!
      Thanks Eashwar for being here:)

      Delete
  7. Whew, this kind of thing happens way too often. Your poem gave voice to one of those young girls at a pedophile's hand. At least in this poem the young girl did not have to see the pedophile again....but sad that the girl was shirked off by her father and told to go play with her dolls. I find myself wondering if he knew by the look in her eyes that something happened....and did nothing. A very strong write, Panchali.

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    1. Mary, Maybe, the father didn't want to discuss about about sex with a girl of her age.
      In an era where we talk about imparting sex education to school students right from their primary school days, it comes as an utter shock to see parents still living with orthodox mindsets, being reluctant to discuss anything about 'sex' with their children, especially teenage daughters in some home in India....But, yes, definitely, he could read her body-language, so threw that pervert out of the house!
      Thanks a lot, Mary for the encouragement.

      Delete
  8. Very relevant topic Panchali ! Loved how sensitively you have written the post as well. This is the worst of the crimes in my book, for the innocence of a child is the purest thing possible and to snatch that away is unforgivable.

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    1. Good to see you here after a long time, moonstone :))) Thanks for your encouragement.
      Yes, this is the worst crime possible in my book too!!And it shows why parents must come out of the shells and adopt a candid approach towards their kids when it comes to open-discussion ...Children have the right to learn how
      to protect and respect their bodies.
      Thanks so much!

      Delete
  9. sad but a bitter truth :( y can't we have strong law in place to stop all dese non sense ...!!!!

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    Replies
    1. We need strong laws for these perverts, I agree. But the problem is, predators are excellent actors. To catch one in his or her “act”, you have to know what you’re looking for....
      Thanks:)

      Delete
  10. It's hurtful to hear such stories and hat's off to you for associating with such an organization who takes care of the oppressed downtrodden...!!!

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    1. Anjan, For me it is just a voluntary service...but, it makes me a wee bit happy to be able to do something for the unfortunate women and children. Her story was heart-wrenching..to say the least.
      Thanks:)

      Delete
  11. what exactly can be done about it??? its nice that u are working for organisation that looks after the traumatised....but how to stop it altogether so that they dont get traumatised/abused in the first place???

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    Replies
    1. Nandini, For the past twenty years, I have been working (voluntary service)for different organisations. At one point, I was attached to Compassionate Crusaders also( they work for stray dogs and animals). My husband's constant transfers kept me shifting from one organisation to another.
      It’s nice doing something worthwhile and nice actually seeing an immediate impact,...or, to just seeing someone smile when you do something to help them out...
      Thanks for being here..:))

      Delete
  12. Boldly written..every story told is a big victory in a way..

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    1. I liked this statement--"every story told is a big victory in a way.." ---WOW!
      Thanks, jaeroase!!

      Delete
  13. This is how cruel people kill innocence of a child forever.

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    1. Yes...A child's trust is the predators biggest key to secrecy...sic!
      Thanks Rajesh.

      Delete
  14. It's a hard thing to read about
    But a hard reality
    In every country

    You handled it with sensitivity
    And a gentle touch
    Nicely done

    Cheers!
    JzB

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, jazzbumpa for coming by and sharing your thoughts. And thanks for the words of appreciation... :)))))

      Delete
  15. Heart-wrenching, Panchaili di.
    They tend to 'groom' and everybody sees that as niceness. Very deceiving! Children should be taught not to fall for this.

    So glad to know that you work with an organisation that works for people who have been sinned against. Keep up the good work.

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    1. Divya, Pedophiles want a child who is easy to “groom” or “court”. The easiest targets are the ones who need attention and feel wanted. Sad, when it happens in educated homes..
      Well, frankly my contribution is very little...it's a voluntary service, but keeps me ticking and makes me less-guilty :)
      Thanks a lot!!

      Delete
  16. Sad, but evil exists in society in all forms ... this is a really serious crime which should be dealt as severely as any other criminal offences ... a child should be allowed to grow with his/her innocence.

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    1. Absolutely, Speck. These predators deserve strong punishments-- If we suspect someone, we must report it. We owe it to our children!!
      Thanks a lot!

      Delete
  17. so sad that predators are always on the look out to do these things and take advantage of children. A child should be protected and live as a child with innocence.

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    1. I agree with you, Sheilagh Lee, A child needs constant vigil..because a pedophile “courts” his little victim by buying her gifts, taking her on trips, anything that makes her feel special – to gain friendship and trust. Isn't it disgusting??
      Thanks:)

      Delete
  18. Sad! Well expressed through your lines.

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  19. I remember watching about this on "Satyamevajayate". Awareness helps, but what else is the question.

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    1. Yes, Fizz-- We felt the pang of shock, with each revelation that came in the form of disgusting stories,and statistics. Awareness helps..and precisely, that's the reason why I wrote this poem.
      Thanks:)

      Delete
  20. A wonderful person and a great writer like you could only handle this painfully unfortunate subject so poignantly and meaningfully!
    Powerful Panchali!!

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    1. Yes, Amit..You are right. And we come to terms- rather shamefacedly- with ourselves.

      Cheer up... And thank you!

      Delete
  21. I feel dizzy whenever I read such issues, but yes we should be aware of all these...Just because we close our eyes, negative things don't stop happening!

    Their hearts are shattered twice when their own parents don't pay attention to them! :'( Very very sad!

    NOBODY should be trusted easily these days! NOBODY!! A person earns our trust will only do such things!

    These criminals should be punished very very severely!!

    You wrote a beautiful post on the important issue!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Valli..These predators are excellent actors. To catch one in his or her “act”,is something next to impossible!!!
      Talking to children about safety on these issues protect them from an early age. And, children who are confident and have good support from parents are less likely to be targeted by child sex offenders..
      I agree, these perverts deserve severe punishments!!!
      Thanks a lot, Valli.

      Delete
  22. Panchali, you have touched a significant aspect of life that's normally ignored by many a parent. It is important that parents do their best in educating their children, keeping vigil over them and creating a closer bond with them to confide every single thing they come accross.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for that beautiful comment, Fayaz. You said it so well...!! I request all the parents to take the initiative of discussing these issues with kids; it may seem awkward in the beginning, but it facilitates in bringing up a more strong & open bond b/w parents & their children later.
      Thanks so much, for stopping by...:)

      Delete
  23. really Heart-wrenching .... it sent a shiver down my spine ...

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    1. Right...TTT!! A topic like this is always heart wrenching. :((
      Thanks a lot!

      Delete
  24. I agree, heart wrenching indeed!

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    1. Ah, that what it is, Jaish:((
      Thanks so much:)

      Delete
  25. A painful reality beautifully expressed

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    1. It is...Deepak. Truth is stranger than fiction!!:(
      Thanks very much!

      Delete
  26. Boldly written! But in reality it is much more painful and disgusted feeling for a child. One who goes through all this can never trust anyone and it leaves a scar on the heart of a small child which can never be cured. Sometimes it also results in early maturity of the child or they get so disturbed that they lose their confidence.

    In most of the cases those children themselves don't understand whether the act is wrong or right, so they don't feel like telling it to anyone or if they do mostly no one takes any action against it.

    I have gone through something similar and it made me remember all that. But I appreciate your efforts that you support such organizations, such children need love and care only.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anjali, Welcome to my space. I am so glad you came and read this post. Having gone through this trauma...this post must have triggered those worst memories once again! I am sorry.
      But, being a writer, you can easily pour out the agonies of your heart, chaff, and sift them....keep what is worth keeping, blow the rest away. I agree with you, that supervision and vigilance by adults is essential to preventing all forms of child abuse...
      Sorry about the late revert.
      Thanks so much for being here. Hope to see you more on these pages, Anjali.
      Take care,

      Delete
  27. It's happening so often in the society...and maximum of them are still behind the curtains..It's high time for the parents to be alert and to be friendly with their kids..
    Another social issue which needs an urgent attention..

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    1. Yes, Odyzz..the abuser violates the trust of everyone, that makes the abuse even more devastating. Parents need to be careful and should be on vigil.
      Thanks Odyzz...:)

      Delete
  28. This needs to be said louder, shouted from the rooftops. Pedophilia has thrived in our country for ages, unacknowledged, swept under the carpet, hidden behind assumed mantels of respectability. As with anything related to sex, the big NO-NO in our country, child abuse has been overlooked on purpose. Now, no longer.

    An evocative write on a sensitive issue that still needs acceptance in our country. This needed to be said. Thank you for writing this.

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    1. Thanks Mixi...! Indeed..parents must develop strong communication skills with children. They should encourage them to talk about their experiences....especially, mothers have a big role to play.
      Thanks you for your support.

      Delete
  29. I'm glad you are sharing more awareness about this very disturbing issue that so many people nowadays are dealing with!
    On a lighter note, I have a blog award for you on my site. Please stop by when you can and grab it. Just leave me a message there to let me know you got it. Thanks and congrats to you!

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    1. WOW....What a great piece of news! I am honored, thrilled, and absolutely gratified, MM!!! Thanks a zillion!!

      Delete
  30. A big standing applaud for you for sharing..:-)Thanks.:-)

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    1. Thank you so much for your generous “love” and invaluable support for the cause Nagini. xoxo

      Delete
  31. Panchali,it is very diturbing that many parents do not have the 'courage' to talk to their children about sex. I have seen many children telling their teachers how they have been used.When the parent is informed by the teacher they blame their own child.This is atrocious!! It is unfortunate that such attitude of the parents(especially the mothers)gives impetus to such creatures.And still more unfotunate is that many a time thr predator is a member of the family or a neighbour!!

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  32. such disturbing but the truth of the society...you have put forward with simple but strong words and is very expressive. I like the understanding and supportive parent portrayed out here. If the parents are watchful and supportive we can stop and eradicate such things from our society and help make it a better place to live :))

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