Stories about child sexual abuse

Girls don’t tell, boys don’t cry

His hands were hard, His voice was soft, His eyes were red, His teeth had rot, I tried to run, But he wouldn’t let me go, I tried again, But he just said no.   Then he smiled the most ugly smile, Don’t you know, you silly child? Girls don’t tell, And boys don’t cry.   Another push, another blow, He had me trapped, I could not go, One fine day, I’ll let you leave, Until that day you shall grieve, But what will you tell them, when you’re free?   He watched me as he made me lie, Girls don’t tell, And boys don’t cry.   He’s not here now, But he has me still, I dream his face, His ghastly grin, How his teeth had rot, How ...

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Sughra died when she was 11, but she will not rest in peace

We live in a society where children are not taught much about the different forms of abuse. As adults, we are reluctant to discuss sex education, necessary for their safety. Child sexual abuse is prevalent in our society, so there is no point in being in denial about it, and it has a very harmful impact, not just on the bodies but also the minds of the victims. Exploitation of such kind, taking place at a tender age, can have unimaginable life-long effects; leaving the victim emotionally scarred for life, including but not limited to shaking his/her confidence and annihilating ...

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Child-abuse? Oh please, that doesn’t exist in Pakistan!

“I was too young to know at the time; all I knew was that it was uncomfortable and painful.” I froze when I heard my friend say these words. Surely not in our families? Surely not in the lives of my own friends? This was the first instance of a friend opening up about her experience of being sexually abused as a child. She blamed everyone, from her uncle who did it, to her parents who she felt did nothing to protect her, to herself for not knowing better. But how could she have known? She was only 10-years-old at the time. You might ...

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Do you know your Qaaf se Qanoon?

Good things should be appreciated and promoted, a recent example would be Qaaf se Qanoon, a radio-show, launched on ZAB FM 106.6.What this show seeks to do is spread legal literacy amongst the masses. The show is being aired in Karachi every Monday, from 6pm to 7pm. Those living in other cities can listen to the show online on either ZAB FM’s website or on Soundcloud. Qaaf se Qanoon is part of the ‘SZABIST Legal and Research Clinic’; project initiated by Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology’s (SZABIST) faculty, current students and alumni. The main purpose of this clinic is to advocate ...

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Ahmad Saleem – a paedophile – and the tarnished image of Islam in the US

This week, American Muslims find themselves holding their heads and groaning over the new wave of sneering and jeering coming their way again. The tidal wave was set in motion last week with the arrest of Ahmad Saleem in Florida in a sting operation that busted a major child sex ring. Saleem was one of the 100 men arrested in attempting to have sex with girls between the ages of 12 and 14. Police officers in Lake and Polk counties in Florida posed as young girls on chat forums to lure in these predators. When Saleem arrived at the arranged house looking to have ...

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If you are gay and Muslim, “change your sexual orientation!”

I was shocked when I read the recent news story about a Muslim family living in Germany who wanted to arrange the marriage of their 18-year-old homosexual son against his will with a Lebanese girl. The son told the media that his family threatened to slit his throat and burn him alive if he did not change his sexual orientation. Eventually, the court intervened and saved the young man from the brutal punishment from his family. This news reminded me of an acquaintance, Azam*, who runs a delicatessen in New York. He told his mother that he was gay when they ...

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The flaw in Punjab’s child marriage law

Justice Muhammad Imman Ali has served in the Supreme Court of Bangladesh as well as other high ranking positions as a law practitioner. He is famous for his work on child rights; he has drafted the much known comprehensive law Shishu Ain 2013 Children Act in Bangladesh, and has played a vital role in promulgation of the same. In December 2014, he received the International Juvenile Justice without Borders Award for his untiring efforts towards the protection of children’s rights and juvenile justice. A source of inspiration for me, Honourable Justice Imman Ali has articulated very clearly that the two problems – child marriages ...

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12 things the media should have highlighted when a 5-year-old was murdered in Lahore

Having worked on child rights issues and more specifically against child sexual abuse, a highly prevalent and often not talked about menace of the society, for the last 16 years, the sad and tragic incident of the rape and murder of a five-year-old earlier this month in Lahore, did not come as a shock to me. However, what did come as a shock and disappointment was how the media missed the opportunity to highlight, through its vast network, the importance of educating children, parents and caregivers about the issue of child sexual abuse; the need for strong and effective legislation against child sexual ...

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Red Riding Wolf, the child abuser

Red Riding Wolf  I once heard a storyteller say, it’s not about the story… for stories are all the same; it’s how you tell a story that makes it different. Today, we embark on the journey of telling you tales popularly heard and read as fairytales, folklore, plays, novels and poems and give you a new perspective on them – a little something to ponder upon. We take a popular read and bridge it to our surroundings; we play on the nuances, the implied reality between the lines, the obvious being told and the vague that is suggested. The idea behind this concept is to ...

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Pakistan’s Hidden Shame: Exposing child sexual abuse and Pakistan’s ‘see no evil’ attitude

Pakistan’s Hidden Shame, a documentary exploring the widespread sexual abuse of children in the streets of Peshawar, is something one wishes every Pakistani would take time to watch, while imploring his or her own eyes to un-see it. The practice of ‘bachabazi’ (child prostitution), as it’s known around the country, is something most of us are aware of. It is an ignominious fact of life in Pakistan that has blended seamlessly among all the other facts we don’t like to talk about. The statistics are hair-raising. Of the estimated one and a half million street children in Pakistan, 90% have suffered sexual abuse. And for every 10 ...

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