Law enforcement investigators strongly advise parents to avoid questioning their child once he or she has disclosed an incident of sexual assault. It’s natural to want to know the details, but too much questioning can appear to an investigator or jury as possible manipulation of the child’s testimony.

Remain calm (and neutral) when you are with your child. See the bubbles for examples of some things you might say.

Watch the video below for information about the effects of child sexual abuse.

For many caregivers, when a child comes forward to disclose sexual abuse, the experience can be earth-shattering. Families try so hard to protect their children, so when something like this happens, it can seem like there are no words to express the sorrow that they feel. You can help your child come to terms with their feelings and emotions by remaining open, listening carefully and withholding judgment. The journals below will help you in this process.