False reports of abuse should be dealt with harshly

Editorial

Published December 13, 2006 / Tahlequah Daily Press

Most reasonable people would agree that, when it comes to protecting children from predators and abusers, society should take every necessary precaution. And since we have it from the highest authority that we are, indeed, our brothers’ keepers, every member of society bears a degree of responsibility for protecting all children – not just our own.

So it’s a good idea to uphold laws that require certain individuals – like teachers and childcare workers, for instance – to report cases of abuse when they see them. And whistleblowers have to be protected, too, because a person who abuses his (or her) kids is very likely to lash out against anyone who would expose the wrongdoing.

Yet in Cherokee County and elsewhere, there’s another problem police officers and social workers need to address, and that’s the occasional abuse of the law people who file bogus reports. Almost everyone has a friend or family member who has been victimized by a small-minded, petty individual who exacts a personal vendetta by filing a false report. The reasons for such unconscionable behavior are many, but none hold water.

Over the past 20 years, at least three daycare workers in Cherokee County have talked to the Daily Press about the nightmares that unfolded when they were accused of abusing their charges. Later, it turned out none of the allegations were valid. One was made by a parent who refused to pay her bill; one was filed by a bitter ex-husband of the worker in question; and the third was concocted by a boy who had been scolded after bullying other children.

Even the Daily Press has not escaped the cross-hairs of miscreants bent on destroying families. In the past two decades, no less than four employees – and probably several more – have been maliciously targeted. The same can be said for many other businesses, too.

Although most false accusations are made anonymously, it’s not hard in such cases to figure out who did the deed. Often it’s a former spouse who’s involved in a custody dispute with the targeted employee. Sometimes it’s a child who’s been grounded or otherwise punished, and wants to retaliate against the offending parent. In the past, case workers have indicated false child abuse reports are often logged against managers by fired employees looking for revenge. And then there are the “exes of exes” – spurned lovers of the spouses of victims, who can’t seem to put aside their jealousy at being thrown over for a better mate. And on and on.

Most folks don’t read about people who are wrongly accused, because officials soon close the investigations after finding no evidence of crime. And yet, many of the intended targets are traumatized – sometimes permanently – by the initial proceedings. And so are the children, who have no clue why they’ve been dragged into the sinister plot.

Though the target may be innocent of all charges, word that a report has been filed sometimes leaks out into the community. And even if it doesn’t make the city grapevine, close friends and family members still find out, and may harbor just an inkling of doubt. If nothing actually happened, they may wonder, why did someone say it did?

That’s why it’s important that social workers and law enforcement officers make a special effort to clear the names of the innocent. Even if a case never goes public, private reassurances among those in the know will help alleviate lingering concerns.

At the same time, law enforcement officers should vigorously pursue and prosecute the maladaptives who, while filing a report with the claimed intent of protecting children, is aiming to harm them and their loving families.

For anyone involved with similar circumstances, it hasn’t escaped notice that individuals who file false reports are often themselves guilty of the crimes of which they accuse others. In fact, at least one area individual prone to fabrications against “enemies,” either real or perceived, has several children who have appeared in public filthy, with soiled underpants, torn clothing, dried mucus on their faces, and teeth that have never seen the business end of a toothbrush. Paradoxically, these children have not been removed from the home; perhaps even now, social workers are still collecting the evidence.

It’s true that many people in this area have abused children – a sad fact of life that often presents itself in areas where poverty has driven many human beings to despair. Most of these cases eventually make the news, as well they should; these people wreak terrible havoc on youngsters, scarring young bodies and minds. They are the worst kinds of criminals, and should be removed from any situation that would allow them to continue their atrocities.

But we shouldn’t forget the innocent victims of allegations, who sometimes seem to draw a far harsher spotlight than the real abusers do. If left to run amok, those who cry wolf can do almost as much damage to children as the abusers themselves.

http://www.tahlequahdailypress.com/editorials/local_story_347094942.html?keyword=topstory

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and what if...

"At the same time, law enforcement officers should vigorously pursue and prosecute the maladaptives who, while filing a report with the claimed intent of protecting children, is aiming to harm them and their loving families."
What if in the midst of truth, there are false allegations that ruin the reputation of very innocent people?  How should the "victim" who lies BIG lies but them eventually admits the truth and the real abusers confesses... how should that victim be treated or punished for her lies?
What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

This is a tough one

What if in the midst of truth, there are false allegations that ruin the reputation of very innocent people?  How should the "victim" who lies BIG lies but them eventually admits the truth and the real abusers confesses... how should that victim be treated or punished for her lies?

Personally, I believe more people need to understand the ways in which sexual/child abuse changes the way a person thinks.  In some cases, I think rage and jealousy can make a person want to bring other people down... in other cases, I think the victim doesn't want to see the one who has perpetrated the abuse get in trouble (out of fear or a bizarre sense of loyalty).  Either way, try to imagine the pressure an afraid child is under when rendering such a confession;  I don't think there can be one punishment for the choice in lying.

Perhaps there's a bigger issue many of us are missing -- how do we bring personal responsibility and accountability to those who have learned very twisted social rules and behaviors?  ["Teach a child to lie and keep secrets, that child will find things to lie about and keep secrets"]

Sadly, I believe the rush-to-judge (which DOES go both ways) tends to lead to mistakes that can easily break families, regardless of the actions committed against one another.  

 

false accusations

I have no personal experience with false allegations, so I have very little to say about it, although there is one thing that especially bothers me and that is the fact allegations can be made anonymously. I guess it was intended to protect people who would fear retalliation, but to me it seems more and more be used to protect those that intend harm by abusing the child abuse laws. In the various stories I read about false allegations I noticed how often adults fight their fights over the backs of children, using Child Protective Services as their armies. Neighbours, spouses, grand parents, collegues,using CPS to get even with some other adult, using the children as pawns. Of course that is only one form of false allegations, the other form is even murkier, where a child makes false allegations over presumed abuse. From what I read, there always seems to be a previous pattern of abuse, which gets acted out over an innocent person. In a world of repressed memories and dissociation, I guess it makes sense abuse get relived and allegations are made when it's safe enough to do so.

Did you ever...

I don't expect to hear from more than one person, but here goes, anyway:
Did you ever report false allegations in any way, shape or form?  Were you a habitual liar?  Did you play in feces?  Did you take bathes with a sibling where sexual abuse could have started?  Were you abused by a sibling, or by a parent?  Did a
relative abuse you?  Did you tell and everyone hushed it up to save the family?  What would you do different, looking back?
I woke up early this morning with all of this running through my head and just really need some answers as to how sexual
abuse "starts" and who it is most likely to be from.  I read that 95% of all sexual abuse is within the home and by family members or extended family and just want t hear how YOU think it got started in your own family. 
Stranger-danger is not that common and the government wants you to think it is; when the real danger is right inside the home.  Vote-whores keeping the public in constant fear when the real danger lurks right where you live.  And more and more is not being reported because no one wants to lose their whole family.  I truly believe families just want help but don't seek it; and that perpetuates the child-sexual abuse!
And because of the harsh and harsher laws being made, more and more sexual abuse will happen and go on in generations  to come.  There has to be a time to come when families seek help without putting everyone in danger of losing everything they hold dear in an attempt to get much needed help.

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

Reviewing the question check-list

When I read your list of questions, I could not help but think these were all RAD descriptions, put into question-form.

This makes me wonder if RAD should be seen (and treated) very differently.. (As opposed to it being an "adoption issue" so many attachment therapists want to say it is.)

I read that 95% of all sexual abuse is within the home and by family members or extended family and just want t hear how YOU think it got started in your own family. 

For the fostered/adopted child, who's to say such abuses took place within the first/original family?  [For those who have lived among those who called themselves "family", or "like-family" such a question can be very misleading.]

I truly believe families just want help but don't seek it; and that perpetuates the child-sexual abuse!

I can't say I truly believe that.  I believe there are MANY foster/adoptive families that not only deny sexual abuse is taking place, but then blame the victim for ruining a "perfectly good family".  In these cases, the child abuse not only gets prepetuated, but a victim is left more hurt and angry than ever.

hello...

"For the fostered/adopted child, who's to say such abuses took place within the first/original family?  [For those who have lived among those who called themselves "family", or "like-family" such a question can be very misleading.]"

I always come at things like my family is a real family; not even thinking how the rest of you would see this.  I don't believe there is a high percentage of "real" families being the culprit because most kids who are molested within the REAL home/family are not then placed for adoption.  Not many people want to adopt sexually abused kids.  So my question was from the point of the adoptee and the adoptive home.
I see much more sexual abuse among the adopted kids in adoptive homes because bio families obviously think more of their bio kids than adoptive families think of their adopted kids.  What I base this on is KNOWING families with both adopted kids and bio kids and seeing how they react to both. 
I can not compare in my own home because I have no bio kids.  But, obviously my husband saw my daughter as an object and not a human being.  If there had been blood relating them, I wonder if this would have happened with her.  There were 7 children and only one was used. 
From what I read here, every one of you was abused and used as an object by people who were not your blood relatives.  And if I remember right, didn't some of you say there were bio kids in the family and they were not abused/used? 

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

Digging deeper

I always come at things like my family is a real family; not even thinking how the rest of you would see this.  I don't believe there is a high percentage of "real" families being the culprit because most kids who are molested within the REAL home/family are not then placed for adoption.  Not many people want to adopt sexually abused kids. 

If it was a first-family who was being investigated for child abuse/molestation, that child would be placed in foster-care.  If either/both parents are put in state prison,  (or there only is one parent who then goes to prison...) and that parent and child is denied "family visits" what do you think happens to that child?  [Hint:  parental rights get terminated, (as per state law) so the adoption-option can legally proceed.  See "Duty of the courts" for more.]

Here enters the highly-publicized wish to "save children" caught in foster-care. 

We are told how children are languishing in horrific foster-care conditions.  ["Please, won't you adopt a child who needs a 'forever family'?"]

Yes, God-forbid a child becomes a ward of the state, forced to become yet another aged-out-of-foster-care statistic.  [Aren't we led to believe most of them turn to a life of crime and end-up in prison?]

So you're right... PAP's (and their pre-qualifying foster parent-partners), as a general rule do NOT want to adopt a child who has been sexually abused.  So what do some placement agencies/social workers do?  They lie about the facts (the child's past) and hope no one becomes the wiser.

Meanwhile, you made a remark I have often asked myself many many times: 

If there had been blood relating them, I wonder if this would have happened with her.

It has always been my little personal theory that it is far easier to abuse/neglect a child that is not a full-blood relation.  By no means does that suggest biology itself protects a child from being abused... it simply means I think the child placed "out and away" is more likely to get hurt/neglected in ways most cannot imagine.

Exactly...

I had the two little sisters in foster care for over 3 years and refused to adopt them because of the sexual abuse and their acting out that just didn't stop.  The PAP's were lied to and even when I wrote them a very long letter, stating the truth, they just didn't think it mattered because they were "making it happen;" having adopted a son from foster care, these girls would make their family perfect.  And I've told it before how that son sexually abused the girls (who were highly sexual anyway); the mother died and the father did drugs with the oldest girl and they also shared sex.
What I meant in the other post is this:  IT is not being told in bio homes because of the harsh laws that split the whole family apart and therefore I'm not seeing that much in the news about bio families and sexual abuse.  I do hear a lot about the abuse in foster homes and adoptive homes and step family homes.  That doesn't mean it is less in bio homes, only that it is starting to be hushed up because of the insane laws that protect NO CHILD!

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

Keeping lies from the truth

I do hear a lot about the abuse in foster homes and adoptive homes and step family homes.  That doesn't mean it is less in bio homes, only that it is starting to be hushed up because of the insane laws that protect NO CHILD!

This is the very reason why false allegations of sexual abuse are so dangerous.  I think this is something ALL parents should know.

Well said, and a very good

Well said, and a very good point made in your post teddy!!

Did you tell....

Did you tell?  At what age did you tell?  And what happened?  Were you made to think/feel it was all your fault?  How has this affected your sexual life as an adult?

BECAUSE there are no responses here, I'm assuming no one told?   And maybe this did not affect your sexual life as an adult?   SHEESH!

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

False Reporting- Sorry it is so long

I am still getting past the shock....

Let me start by letting you all know I have never been abused nor any known family member. I have a son who is in 3rd grade. He has never been abused and I will make sure he will never fall victim to anything of this nature. He is a smart kid who is hoping to go into advanced placement through school and very excited about getting his results about the placement test. Then CPS shows up at my home asking questions that made me sick. Then asked my son questions. Rest assure that before i answered I immediately called our attorney! He said to comply. COS came around 1 and left abought 4:30 my son got off the bus that day @ 3:45. I had my husband leave work and drive an hour home. But here is where it starts...I moved into a nice family neighborhood. After in this home for 1 and 1/2 years, and making alot of new friends with parents and other children, I was reported because I was a young mom and a young looking mom and they feared there was a possibility that my son could be sexually abused due to that. I was also told the person went on and on about my physical looks. Of course this report was screened out but this report came after I had lived in the home for 8 months. I am just now finding out about this report because there has been another report regaurding the same only left out how i look and added they saw my son out without a coat or shoes in the winter and he is suppose to be harmful to animals. I am still married to the father he has a great job and we have a big home. It came from a family that moved to the neighborhood after us and the wife works for the county and she is overweight my age with a daughter my son's age and a very small home. The home, no lie, is the size in square footage as our master bed and bathroom. This came out of spite and jealousy. I found out because I couldn't help myself I had to know. I knew it had happened to one neighbor who is an attractive woman and has 4 daughters her and her husband both have great jobs. I went to this woman's home who works for the county and just wanted to ask her if she knew of anything in the neighborhood I should be conserned about. Her husband then spilled I started crying and ran out while she was yelling why did you tell her. The husband did tell me what his part of the whole harmful to animals was... myson picked up a dead chipmunk that our cat brought onto our breezeway and said look what Bianca caught to the his friends. One of his friends was a little girl that belonged to these parents. She told them "He is so gross" and continued with what happened. I was told last year this would to me because i have a small frame I'm 5'6" and I'm curvy where needed. We live on the water so of course you will see me at the beach with kids in a bikini. This is very wrong to be used as a target because these women, yes there are 2 of them I'm still waiting to contact the other's husband to see if he spills, are my age 1 slightly older but not much are out of shape completely and do not have the natural beauty that some others have. I am a stay at home mother mostly. I will occasionally work when I do decide I want a job I stick with it until it becomes a burden on my family. I am the mother, the housewife, the chef, the maid a normal woman. Mostly stay at home. I mean I am no supermodel and we are by far rich we are broke paying for our home and taking care of our son. It is really sad this happens. What really makes me mad is how many times I have been told I "need to get used to it", "people are just jealous", "surprised it hasn't happened to you before", "all of us have went through it" It makes me so mad! Why should I have to get used to it? I was an adult when I had my son I take care of myself so I should be punished!

sex abuse/ rape/ etc...

only 13% that go to trial are convicted.... in rape cases

(only 10% of the military women being raped by co-soliders get justice)

it really is hard to prove.....

they do tell us in training... 80-90% of all kids in foster care have been sexually abused in some way...

my son's bio sister was 4, she could speak well, their was evidence on her body when the police came and took the kids into care, she had the exam, ect.... there were witness who call the police... the guy was never charged ... never spent one day in jail...

my girls bio parents confessed to started to have sex with their oldest son when he was 2 weeks old (that is when mommy started her head and blow jobs...)

the were convicted on one count did 30 days.... for abusing kids 7 years...

no, false alegations should not be dealt with harshly, there is already a big enough punishment for reporting anyway.... as nothing but the humilation ususally results..

and actually it really is the reason a lot of women leave their husbands, but with the fucked up system, ....

sorry you got investigated.... but these laws help some kids a little...

It's so messed-up!

they do tell us in training... 80-90% of all kids in foster care have been sexually abused in some way...

You know what scares me?  There are those nut-job spouses/neighbors who will falsely accuse a parent of sexually abusing their child, and that non-abused child will go into a system where sexual abuse can become an unwritten promise.... and people just don't seem to care!!!!  (It's all so incredibly insane and spiteful to me, it really really is!).

It's bad enough sexual abuse does take place at home, with family.... it's a pattern that has almost become a honored tradition in certain cultures and religions. [See A History of Child Abuse ] But why does this sexually using children have to be a continued pattern once a child is removed from dangerous/negligent parents?

Think about that figure -- 80-90% of all kids in foster care have been sexually abused in some way...  doesn't that concern people?  Don't the consequences of real sexual abuse scare people?  As a parent, the idea of my kids being sexually used/abused TERRIFIES me.  I know what it does.  I know how it ruins so many things.  I know how it kills the will to be strong and have faith in people again.  And I know there are some places I don't want my kids to ever stay, visit or live.  If I can't protect my kids from sexually abusive people, who can? 

I have been reading blogs written by adults put in-care and many of them write about sexual abuse as if it's a given.  In fact one blogger, Jailhouselawyer, wrote:

This used to go on all the time, between the boys, in Dr Barnardo's Homes. There were no prosecutions. It was consensual sex, in spite of the age differences. It was sexual experimentation.

How many of those "consenting" people go on to live happy fulfilling lives.... and how many of them turn to drugs and alcohol for comfort and company?  How many of the offenders go to prison, and how many of the non-offenders go to prison? 

The lack of boundaries astounds me.... the lack of decency in people amazes me.... and the effects from "experimental" sex still haunt me.... but I know that's just me.  After all, how much do my thoughts and opinions really matter in the whole scheme of things?

I do know this:  If 80-90% of all kids in-care have been sexually abused (in some way), those in well-paid positions of authority ought to look into that statistic and ask themselves, " how can that percentage be lowered?".  It's the very least these workers/public servants can do, isn't it?

what I think they meant

was at some point before or during foster care they will be sexually abused in some way.... and that goes from watching porn (being exposed to material far above age level) to really, really bad stuff...

my son was molested by a boy who shared his foster home bedroom for at least 7 months... he was 7-8 years old the other kid was 12 or 14.... never really got that straight... nothing happend to the foster parents or the kid... probably the biggest issue my son deals with

yep, does make you sick though....

Warning labels

I don't think that many people realize just how fragile the mind can be, especially when sex and sexuality get introduced to a person learning so many other things, simultaneously.  [What's funny about this is, I was told to "wait" to date and have sex, yet my first  hard-core sexual experience (that I clearly remember) took place when I was in the 4th grade.  So much for following rules of a God-and-law-abiding society.]

When you think how strongly visualization impacts a person's sexuality it's easy to see how certain material and experiences can alter a person's mind and sense of what is/isn't "acceptable behavior".  [I know this is a weird issue for me... what was "normal" is not at all normal to many... but I never knew this!  I was told never to tell, and out of petrified fear, I never did.]

Many of those who have contacted me over the years have openly admitted (privately) they see themselves as "closet sex addicts", with really specific kinks and needs.  Not surprising to me, almost every one of them admits to being abused as a child... most of them raped by an adult family member/family friend. What fascinates me is the type of porn these people use when alone.  In the privacy of their own personal space the visuals they choose often reflect the scenes and experiences already familiar to them... and in some cases the examples shown me (by very brave people) scare the crap out of me!  I try not to judge, but understand where it is they have been and where it is they need to go so those images don't define their sex-life.  [Such things can really kill an otherwise healthy happy intimate relationship.]

This is what saddens me... we live in a world where sexual freedom has become a priority... and while I believe that's fine between two consenting adults, I have a huge problem children seeing things that can easily desensitize their sense of loss, pain and danger.  I wish more adults would see how their actions and interests mold the minds of the children watching them.

to this day...

My mind has the pictures of the things that happened to me as a very young child; and then in my teen years.  When I would go to church, and see the pastor standing in the pulpit, I would see him as a huge phallic symbol...  I find this very sick and demented when first thinking about it; and then when I am finally able to put it into perspective, I am able to understand how my abuse effected me this way.   If this is the way it is for me, what must be going through the minds of children who are thrown from one abusive home to another?

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

[sick smirk]

I think when a person gets abused over and over again, by different people, everyone starts looking like a lying dick, c--t, or asshole.

but...

this was only pastor's in the pulpit!  Was it a pastor who abused me, too?  Was it the authority figure, like a father?  There was something!  Not everyone looked like this to me...  only pastors.  I get your point though.
Teddy feels yucky...

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

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