Wake up Pakistan – child abuse exists

Published: September 11, 2016
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As a society, why are we so adamant to believe what we want to believe? We pretend that the brutal reality of child abuse doesn’t exist. We are taught to remain silent when such tragedies occur, why? There is no point in being in denial about this matter. I wonder who we try to save by not raising our voice against this brutality. Perhaps turning the blind eye makes it bearable for us, but what about those victims? Our silence destroys them further.

When a child suffers from abuse – be it emotional, physical or sexual – it leaves an affect that cannot be described in words. Any kind of exploitation, taking place at a tender age, can have unimaginable life-long effects; leaving the victim emotionally scarred for life. It curbs the victim’s overall personality, from their self-confidence to their perception of the world – all tends to be viewed in a negative light. Can we blame them? We remained silent while they suffered, hence why would they see this world any differently? With a lack of uproar from the public, to the insensitive institutions that we have, everyone seems to be okay while a child suffers.

Unke ghar ki baat hai” (it’s their family matter) – that’s our excuse for being indifferent and selfish. We hear about a child rape case and all of a sudden, we start pointing fingers. From the law-makers to those implementing it, are held responsible. But, are you?

I am sure you are not, as your own child is safe, and you haven’t caused any harm to another child – perhaps your domestic help is over the age of 18 as well, so you of course do not support child labour. I am sure you support sex education in schools so your child is aware of the concept. I am sure that you keep your child away from verbal and physical violence. Also, you must want politicians to raise child abuse concerns, given that over nine children were abused a day in the first six months of 2015.

But, then you’re silent yourself, minding your own business – so are you not a part of the problem?

Published in The Express Tribune, September 11th, 2016.

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