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How to Protect Our Children's Innocence

Updated on December 3, 2012

Childhood is possibly the best time in one’s life. Free from the nagging day-to-day worries that plague us knowledgeable adults, children have such innocence; they can have no comprehension of what life really is about. From infanthood, children learn through play, and this continues right through school until they grow up enough to want to become involved in a different type of game, and start looking for a partner of the opposite sex.

This is how it should be. I still don’t actually know what life is all about, but it certainly involves continuation of the species.

Children do not yet have the equipment to fulfil this role, and so I fail to understand what some men find sexually attractive about a child. I’m not even going to try, because the mind conjures up images I hope to never witness in my lifetime.

Men that are attracted to children sexually are known as paedophiles or pedophiles as it is spelt in the US.

Don't talk to strangers- stranger danger

When I was a child, I was warned by my parents not to speak to strange men. Being an inquisitive child I’m sure I asked why and was told that something bad would happen, but this explanation must have sated an immature mind because I don’t remember asking for more information on exactly what was the bad thing that would happen.

I was warned never to get into a car with a stranger, and not to accept sweeties or lollypops from strangers.

Apparently some of my parents friends were tickled pink when I refused offers of a lift in their car somewhere (we lived in the country) or the offer of a candy, because, as I told them at the time, “they were strangers”. I did not always know the people my parents knew.

My childhood was uneventful in that sense. I played with friends. We went bluebell gathering in the woods, or fishing for eels in the stream that we insisted on calling a river but had a long way to go reach that status! We sometimes played football. We sometimes fell out and I’d go home crying. But I never accepted a lift from a stranger, and nothing bad ever happened.

We swam together all summer in the freezing Atlantic waters. It was fun waiting to see who’d be first under the water. That person was considered the bravest amongst us. Once we’d been under, the water didn’t seem so cold and we could swim a little, or dive underwater to look for sand flounders or crabs.

Looking back, childhood seemed to last forever. We lived, we laughed, we learned together.

We didn’t have computers. They wouldn’t even get invented for another 20 odd years at least, so there was nothing other than the telly to keep us indoors, and my house couldn’t even pick up a TV reception. We played until dusk was falling before we went to our respective homes. Some of the other kids were allowed to stay out later. That was hard on us kids that had to home before dark. I didn’t understand why at the time. I do now.


I was a teenager before I learned of the existence of paedophiles – not through an encounter with one, but through talking to school pals. I was shocked and that feeling of shock has never left me. I will never understand their motivation and even now I do not understand why the key is not thrown away when they get locked up.

I’ve been an adult now for more years than I care to remember, and have lived through paedophiles getting locked up, serving their time, and then coming back out only to repeat their offence. Like a heroin addict they keep going back for more.

That tells me that unlike other criminals, paedophiles really can’t help themselves. They will repeatedly reoffend until they get caught, and will always be a danger around children.

Restrictive Movement of Children

Our children are the ones paying the penalty for the crimes of others. I am sure if I was young again now I would not be allowed out to play with my friends – to wander carefree through fields of fresh hay that used to grow so tall we couldn’t be seen, to skip down to thebeach dressed in nothing more than a bathing costume, to cycle or walk the half mile home from the village as dusk was falling.

Paedophiles are getting bolder. They find a single mother to wine and dine and move in with. They hang around children’s playgrounds waiting for the inevitable crying child to comfort. They befriend the local children and ask them back to their houses under some pretext or other –a new puppy for example.

Many of them have already been jailed for offences, but when they are released no-one knows who they are. This is the friendly man that moved in next door, or the man who is friends with your parents. The nice guy who everyone has a good word for. Children learn to trust him, and so do their parents, because no-one knows what is going on in his head and what he is capable of.

And anyway, he is NICE! He always has a smile for you when you are feeling down, and always asks after you, and your parents. He is a joy to have around and you feel safe with him, and more importantly, your parents feel you are safe with him.

But they were never told about his paedophile past. How he’d already been convicted and jailed for raping a 7 year old, how he’s molested several nine year olds, how he’d interfered with a baby of 11 months.

Even if they were told, they’d struggle to believe it if they’ve already built up a friendly relationship with him.

And one day he gets you alone.....

Sarah's Law

Paedophiles target both boy and girl children and I’m not even going to try understanding what is wrong with their heads.

But I really fail to see why children should lose the only time in their life where they can be truly free. Why shouldn’t parents be warned when a paedophile lives amongst them? Instead of keeping children in to keep them safe, why not keep paedophiles away from the community? As far as I am concerned, they have given up their right to live in a normal society. They are scum and should be treated as such, and not treated with kid gloves as the Human Rights nutters amongst us insist they are.

If you’ve ever read the book Sarah Payne, A Mother’s Story, you would agree with me, and want laws like Sarah’s Law (UK) or Megan’s Law in the US, where communities have a legal right to be informed when a convicted paedophile moves in amongst them. Then you have an informed choice of whether or not to allow this man (it’s almost always a man, but some women have been convicted too) to babysit your children, or to befriend you or your child.

I’m all for laws to protect convicted criminals, as many go on to lead perfectly lawful lives, but not paedophiles, because they always seem to repeat their offences and can’t be cured.


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    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 4 years ago from UK

      They need to see their birth mom. Just make sure she is never alone with them. The police not taking action suggests there is no evidence to prosecute. Have you spoken to the children's doctor? He is best-placed to advise therapists for this sort of abuse. Hope your family gets help.

    • profile image

      Secret 4 years ago

      I have 3 step children living in my house I don't consider them step I love them like my own they r all very young I recently learned of sexual abuse they had been through at the hands of there birth mom we r fighting for custody we have called the police done interviews with the children however no one seems to care they r doing nothing for these babies rights and I don't know what to do but I refuse to let her be around them the whole story breaks my heart the girls r making progress I am constantly researching things to try to help and understand them better if n e one knows of a way I can get more help please let me know

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Good point Sally. Young children know what is appropriate behaviour and what isn't, but when that someone they know tells them something bad will happen to them if they tell, they believe it, and so keep quiet.

      Difficult one. How to teach and protect their innocence at the same time?

    • profile image

      SallyT 8 years ago

      I understand your point about teaching children not to talk to strangers, but the indisputable fact is that they are at greater risk from somebody in the family or somebody that they know. More needs to be done about teaching children and young people what is appropriate behaviour and what to do if they are uncomfortable with anything that is done to them.

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Welcome back, hun :) We were all worried about where you had disappeared to! Thanks for the comments :)

    • Joy56 profile image

      Joy56 8 years ago

      hi thanks for your comments on the forums, i am in fact Poet Lorraine, just changed my name. I liked the way you gave us a background into your childhood here, and it was so heartfelt. I will be back to read more, and fan you when i am able, technical error at the moment,

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Thanks Army Infantry Mom:)

      It's something I feel strongly about and want to see changes made that actually protects children instead of just having to hide them away for their own safety.

    • Army Infantry Mom profile image

      Army Infantry Mom 8 years ago

      Excellent,..Excellent Hub !!! People who hurt kids are monsters that should be destroyed in my book,.. 1 strike - your out policy. I appreciate the work you put into this hub,..

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      I quite agree DG! They cannot be 'cured', they will always re-offend, and so should never walk amongst us as free men. Now to get the politicians to agree and do something about it!

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 8 years ago from UK

      These animals should never be given the chance to re-offend. The destruction of children's lives should be punished with the destruction of their own, by locking them up for life. No other alternative!

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Thankyou very much Katie, your comment means so much to me! The more the merrier reads this, in fact I may well write another hub on it to get people talking about this issue again. Our children need to have the freedom to play in safety, and we don't want another child to suffer as a reminder that this is happening all too frequently. We should be pressuring our MPs etc to get these people off the streets NOW. Our childrens' safety is more important than their human rights, which they gave up when they molested a child.

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 8 years ago from I'm outta here

      IzzyM, What a very important topic to bring up! Thank you your report on Protect Our Children's Innocence from paedophilia is all to important to over look. This is very well written and the message is powerful. I'm very impressed with it and will share it by every means available to me. Proud of you girl and thanks for doing your part to educate. Peace :)

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      @ ethel, yes Sara Payne's health has suffered greatly. The best those of us that agree with her can do is keep up the good fight! Lets' work to get pedos named, shamed, and separated from normal society.

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      @ expats, I'm just after reading the link above with more info on the Lloret de Mar tragedy and I still can't get my head round that one. As news capsules tend to change, I'm linking that story here:

      I have no idea what snaps in a parent's head to make them harm their own children, but sure as heck something DOES snap. It's never a carefully planned and thought out course of action.

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Merlin - it is a sickness of the mind and it is not curable. That is why yes they should be taken out of society because they will always be a danger to children. To my mind, when they attacked a child they gave up their right to live amongst us.

    • Merlin Fraser profile image

      Merlin Fraser 8 years ago from Cotswold Hills

      While I agree that paedophilia is a serious crime, is a jail sentence really the answer ?

      Surely paedophilia is also a sickness of the mind and that is not going to be cured by a few years locked up. Upon release are they not going to be just as big a threat second time around ?

      If prison is the States only answer then it must be for the term of their natural life if the thtreat is to be eliminated.

      In these days of scientific and medical wonders can no other solution be found ? Or is there no profit in a solution like that ?

    • ethel smith profile image

      Eileen Kersey 8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      Sarah Payne has fought so hard. It has taken its toll on her health. Let's hope things improve

    • expats profile image

      expats 8 years ago from UK

      Sadly though either in reality or as a perception it seems more parents are taking the lives of their own children. Although no trial and verdict has yet been brought, we have the current situation in Loret de Mar where two children have died, and a woman has been in court today in Buxton, Derbyshire, accused of setting fire to her own house and murdering her two young children. These are by no means the only cases of parents harming their own children. I can think of several other cases just this year. If kids can't rely on their parents for love and protection, who else can they rely on?

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      I agree with everything you say, but you know it's not too late to change! It will be when our generation is dead - the generation that remember the freedom of childhood. All we are offering future children is to learn to distrust everyone, and that isn't fair as there is only a small minority of people they should distrust. Reminding children not to talk to strangers and that there is safety in numbers should be enough - and we as society should come down extremely heavily on those who wish children harm. Now they seem to get a slap on the wrist for getting caught! Maybe there are more judges who secretly approve than not, I don't know...but we the people as law-makers (we vote in the politicians) should ensure that the sentence for those caught far outweighs the severity of the crime. This is the only way to deter perverts and other who wish to harm children. And let the rest of us get back to looking after children, and giving them cuddles when they are hurt, they way we should be.

    • Merlin Fraser profile image

      Merlin Fraser 8 years ago from Cotswold Hills

      Hi Izzy,

      Another great and thought provoking Hub but what a sad indictment upon society today.

      Did we who lived in earlier times live in innocence or ignorance ? I’m sure paedophilia was around then as it is now but we were completely unaware of such things. As a child I remember resenting the interference of adults who always seemed to appear especially when I was up to no good, but now it seems I should have been reassured by their ever vigilant presence.

      You’re right childhood should be a happy carefree time a time to learn and make dumb choices and even dumber mistakes. In hindsight mine certainly was full of such adventures. I read an article recently that said that back when I was a kid we roamed anything up to 6 miles around our home, whereas nowadays it is 300 metres.

      In today’s Nanny State children are not allowed to be children any more, with an educational system that wants to give lessons on Homosexuality and other sexual activities at primary school. Playtime is discouraged for fear of injury and a law suit from parents who treat such things like winning the lottery, with better odds.

      A friend of mine who allowed herself to be talked into becoming a helper at the local Cub Scout troop where her own grandson attended was forbidden to touch the children. So if a five, six year old fell over hurt his knee and burst into tears she was not allowed to administer the motherly first aid of a cuddle and a promise to kiss it better. Why; because she did not have any formal first aid training and did not have the appropriate trauma counselling certificate. This in spite of being a mother of three and a grandmother of six, she lasted six weeks !

      We have created and continue to accept the society in which we live. Those with the greatest knowledge and experience of how to live in a community are ignored. We have learnt from our American cousins we don’t need to trust anyone any more, we have lawyers instead !

      Thousands of years of evolution brought to where we are today, by now we should have recreated Eden for everyone instead we live in fear surrounded by a higher level of greed, selfishness and ignorance than ever before.

      This is the legacy we leave to our children; I hope we are proud of ourselves.

    • IzzyM profile image

      IzzyM 8 years ago from UK

      Yes I think where children safety is involved it is better to call someone rather than listen out for more noises. They might only yell once then get a hand clasped over their mouth so they can't yell again.

      Thanks for commenting Salt.The danger I outlined above is something we should all be aware of and discuss. Why should children be the ones to lose their freedom? It should be the pedo!

    • salt profile image

      salt 8 years ago from australia

      It is a difficult topic and I did a hub on stranger danger to, without actually talking about the pedophile link directly. I suppose, all abductions are not sexual in nature, so what I wrote about was slightly different.

      It is a very difficult matter to write about, let alone manage in reality. You covered the topic very well. Thanks.

      I know a few months ago, I heard something that disturbed me greatly and wandered around the building complex next to us to try and determine firstly if what I thought I heard was in fact what I thought it was and secondly where the noise came from. By the time I thought Id pin pointed it, the noise had stopped.

      I felt so stupid - if I ever hear that type of sound again, I will call the police first and think later. Id rather be a silly woman who misheard something than worry about being called one and not calling.

      Well written and great photos.


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