VSD for Abused Children

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VSD for Abused Children

Postby LenTesta » Tue Sep 18, 2001 3:05 pm

This is a very disturbing topic. Please comment about the topic and not about any specific person.

There are millions of decent teachers and others who have authority over children and none of them would ever consider abusing them. Nevertheless, there is always one bad apple in the bunch. This one bad apple will bring hatred upon an entire group by using his/her authority for their own pleasures.

There are many ways that children can be abused and many environments that the abuse can take place.

Listed are some of the most devious:

Sexual,
Physical,
Emotional,
Psychological.
Another can compound all of the above.

Some environments that the abuse can occur:

Home,
School,
Playground,
Any place where there is a person who has authority over children.

What is most disturbing to me is the abuse of children in the dojo. We all know this has happened in the past and it will happen again. When a person, who has gained the respect and loyalty of children, uses that edge to abuse them it is a most despicable act.

A child who attends a self-defense institution, is supposed to be learning how to recognize abuse and warn others that they are being abused. When the person, to whom the parents have trusted to teach their children how to defend against these atrocities, is the culprit, it makes for a nasty predicament for the children to be in.

How does a child defend against this abuse?
Verbal communication between the parent and the child.

A parent should always ask their child if he/she is comfortable in the dojo-learning environment. They should ask the child if he/she is comfortable with the Sensei, or instructors touching certain areas of the body. A touch in karate training is considered a prodding of an area to determine a focus of that area. A touch is not considered to be a fondle or "feeling" of the area.

The head, shoulders, hips, lat muscles, kidneys, arms, hands, fingers, elbows, legs, neck, chin, stomach, chest area of males, back feet and toes, are common places that students will be touched or prodded by an instructor or sensei.

The child should not be comfortable with the "Feeling of the body" which is considered a rubbing or placing of the hand on an area that is deemed sexual by response of that touch.

During Uechi-ryu Karate classes, some of the adult students get a two handed smack to the sides of the buttocks from the rear, just to check that the gluteus maximus muscles are tucked in. There should be absolutely no rubbing in this area, as that would constitute a sexual infringement.

There should be absolutely no touching or fondling to any genital areas, buttocks, and breast area of female students. No karate instructor or sensei has any need to "touch" a student in these areas.

The breast area of female students does not need to be touched. An inadvertent touching of the knuckles of the attackers fist to the female breast does not constitute a sexual touch. The rubbing of the breasts from behind, or on the side or from the back is definitely sexual in nature, which should not be allowed by the student.

Arm rubbing only, is part of the curriculum. There should be no rubbing of the legs of female students. It is not a conditioning method to rub the legs, unless the student rubs them himself/herself.

If a student is hurt in the dojo, a sensei or instructor does not have the authority to rub a bruise that is considered to be in any area of the body that is deemed sexual if touched. On female students, areas are the genitals, breasts, buttocks, and thighs. On male students, areas are the genitals, thighs, and buttocks.

During BJJ, Judo, or grappling classes, there is the chance that some inadvertent touching to these areas may occur. The children or female adult students who are 17 or younger who are at the age where they begin to feel uncomfortable with these areas being touched, should not be allowed to perform randori with students, instructors, or sensei of the opposite sex. It is too easy for a planned assault of these areas to occur, while making it seem like it was accidental.

What do you do to insure that your child is not being abused at the dojo?
Never leave your child in a class when there are no parents in the viewing/reception area. Even if there are many children students in the class. Children do not know when others are being touched sexually. Some think that is OK because of the trust that they place in the instructor or sensei. Teach your children to tell you what happens in the dojo. The child must be able to communicate all aspects of his/her training. If the dojo policy does not allow the parents to watch the classes, find another dojo that will. There should be no reason why a parent cannot observe his or her child while in a class.

However, some touching (prodding) is necessary when learning a contact sport or self-defense. You must make sure that the touching is specific to learning knowledge and not sexual in nature. The child should be able to tell you if they are comfortable with the other children, the instructors, adults, and Sensei.

An ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure.



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VSD for Abused Children

Postby LeeDarrow » Wed Sep 19, 2001 6:21 pm

EXCELLENT post, Testa-Shihan!!

A variation of this should be a part of every new student's and parent's information package when enrolling in a class!

In these days of heightened awareness of sexual abuse, such notices are becoming necessary, if for nothing else than to show incoming students that you are aware of the possibilities and are taking active measures to keep anything untoward from happening.

As to verbal abuse, I have seen several teachers - in dojo and in elementary schools, who are emotionally and verbally abusive. In fact, I was the victim of such a teacher for two years (5th and 6th grade, just before I got started in the MA) and despite my parent's best efforts, the school would not allow me to switch teachers.

But that's a whole new thread, sin't it?

Great post!!!

Respectfully,

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.
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VSD for Abused Children

Postby LenTesta » Tue Sep 25, 2001 8:46 pm

Thank you Lee.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
A variation of this should be a part of every new student's and parent's information package when enrolling in a class!


You have assumed correctly that I intend to make this part of the package that I present to the parents of my junior students.

It is this type of unsuspecting touching that boarders on molestation. Sometimes it occurs in the presence of the parents who may not even be aware of it.

Of course, any child left alone with an adult who is clearly disturbed with a case of pedophilia will exceed this simple touching and it will become blatent molestation and in some cases rape. Fortunately, most children can recognize blatent molestation. It is the innocent molestation that may go undetected.

I agree, Emotional and Verbal abuse is no less of a threat to a child's well being and mindset for all future enactment with adults or teachers. What was the nature of the verbal abuse that you received?

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VSD for Abused Children

Postby Van Canna » Tue Sep 25, 2001 9:45 pm

Len,

Great post. Touching during class [ female students _ children] is fraught with dangers because it will be interpreted through so many emotional/psychological filters individual to each child/person.

You might have noticed that with women and children my touching is very limited and only to "neutral" body parts. In fact I am thinking of doing away with touching at all.

You never know what a child might run over to his parents and say, or what an onlooker might perceive not knowing the nuances of our teaching methods.

I have handled cases of child molestation in my work, and there are some unscrupulous child psychiatrists and others, who can plant "certain seeds" in the child's mind to make him say things that never occurred.

Be careful.

A scary subject. Better to be safe than sorry.

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VSD for Abused Children

Postby LeeDarrow » Fri Sep 28, 2001 6:27 pm

Testa-Shihan,

You're welcome. The package is well thought out and contains some really good information. You are to be commended on its creation.

The abuse I received was primarily verbal and was based on the fact that I was one of the cross over kids (Old Math to New - or Chicago - math) and the teacher was incapable of handling the learning curve on the material herself.

At the time, I had the fourth highest math score in the school system, something that came out in one of the innumerable meetings my parents had with the Principal and the teacher.

By the end of the 2 years, I had developed what amounted to a math dyslexia.

Verbal abuse in front of the class, trick questions to make one look the idiot, changing class rules without announcing them and, worst of all, getting hauled across the hall to the multipurpose room for a thorough dressing down - she had been an Army Sergeant, so she could really lay into you - while she left the class unattended. This was a daily routine for two solid years.

Appropriate correction for errors and acting out is one thing. Daily abuse, dressing down and deliberately demeaning a student is abuse. This was clearly abuse.

I even got sent to the school psychologist for a work up (the teacher felt that there was something wrong with me on a mental level) and I wound up seeing the school social worker on a weekly basis for about a year.

Her conclusion was that the teacher in question should not be teaching - and said so in her report.

She was subsequently fired. Get the idea?

She had 3 of us as targets - all boys. Two of us were in the "fast" group, the other one was a boy with a minor learning disability that was later discovered to be a severe shortsightedness problem. He wasn't slow - he couldn't SEE!

I still have trouble with math, but that's what computers are for anyway.

Sorry for the therapy session core dump, but you DID ask and I make no secret of it anyway. After all, I lived through it and am, in some ways, stronger for it. Image

Respectfully,

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by LenTesta:
Thank you Lee.

You have assumed correctly that I intend to make this part of the package that I present to the parents of my junior students.

SNIP!.

I agree, Emotional and Verbal abuse is no less of a threat to a child's well being and mindset for all future enactment with adults or teachers. What was the nature of the verbal abuse that you received?

<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
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VSD for Abused Children

Postby LeeDarrow » Mon Oct 01, 2001 2:12 am

Van Canna-Shihan,

Truer words about the unscrupulous members of the mental health community.

A few years ago, there was a widespread set of urban legends about "ritual satanic abuse," including cannabalism, ritual murder, conspiracy to take over the world - you name it.

In the frenzy caused by these allegations (all unsubstantiated, I might add), the American Psychiatric Association's Man of the Year went overboard on this issue.

Based in Chicago, he essentially used what amounted to brainwashing techniques to get several patients to "believe" that they had been involved as "victims" of such abuses.

Only a year later, the family of one of his patients filed suit against him and, using forensic and investigative techniques available to any LEO, PROVED that the patient had not suffered the "depridations of the satanic cult," as the doctor called it in his testimony.

We all need to be very careful in dealing with kids in the dojo, not only for the obvious, but often for the less obvious reasons.

Respectfully,

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Van Canna:
Len,

Great post. Touching during class [ female students _ children] is fraught with dangers because it will be interpreted through so many emotional/psychological filters individual to each child/person.

You might have noticed that with women and children my touching is very limited and only to "neutral" body parts. In fact I am thinking of doing away with touching at all.

You never know what a child might run over to his parents and say, or what an onlooker might perceive not knowing the nuances of our teaching methods.

I have handled cases of child molestation in my work, and there are some unscrupulous child psychiatrists and others, who can plant "certain seeds" in the child's mind to make him say things that never occurred.

Be careful.

A scary subject. Better to be safe than sorry.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
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VSD for Abused Children

Postby Ted Dinwiddie » Sun May 12, 2002 4:24 am

ANY situation where some people are in positions of authority/control over others has potential for abuse. When the people under the authority are children the potential is worse simply because the consequences for the innocent are so much worse.

As individuals, we must realize that there is NEVER a reason to put up with a situation we find abusive. As parents, we must be vigilant and in charge of our children. We may put our children under another person's care for any number of reasons, but we must remain involved and vigilant.

In my opinion, if a situation looks or feels abusive, then it is abusive. Abuse should not be tolerated. Leave.

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Postby KerryM » Sun Aug 03, 2003 12:16 am

Great topic-

my book is for young adults- (as many of you know) and talks about how children in a school evironment could go to a dojo to help combat (no pun intended) this problem-

I have been wondering about emotional "defense" lately- uechi-ryu is excellent for this copacity as well- though- much is visualization work- for me at least-... Are there any other options- methods for emotional self defense? Not just for kids- though I'd like to hear more on this subject as well.

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