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What to Do

The information that you have received is very difficult not only for the child, but for you as well.  Your reaction to this information is very important in determining how the family will eventually heal.  You need to assure the child that waht happened to them is not their fault and that telling was the right thing to do.  It is important that you demonstrate by words and actions that you will do everything you can to protect him/her from further abuse.  Children need to hear that their behavior was courageous.  Although you may be feeling helpless and frightened, the child should not be exposed to these feelings.