Paedophile hysteria on MN-should DH quit?

(99 Posts)
socharlotte Tue 13-Nov-12 12:04:17

DH is a qualified gymnastics coach.Something he got into when our teenagers were small.He always works in the company of other coaches and there is a parents viewing area.
However most of the gymnasts are little girls (there are a few boys).the jog obviously involves physical contact with the children supporting their flips and vaults etc.But I am thinking he should quit after reading some of the posts on MN recently .A dad hanging round a nursery and a headteacher hanging round a classroom are viewed with suspicion.Are people saying this about DH too.How sad it is that men can't work with children without being viewed as weirdos sad

FanjoForTheMammaries Tue 13-Nov-12 12:05:38

I hear ya, I hope there are still lots of sensible people around who do not view men in that way, I certainly am one of them smile

bitsofmeworkjustfine Tue 13-Nov-12 12:08:38

i would allow my dd to have a male coach, so long as he didnt go in the changing rooms, and i would watch the training sessions.

i would allow my dd to go in the choir, but would be uncomfortable to leave her alone with a priest.

i would allow her to a family party but i wouldnt leave her alone with my brother.

this is how i feel. Its not wrong, its just how i feel. other people feel really differently.

EchoBitch Tue 13-Nov-12 12:09:36

What a shame that all men are viewed this way by some people now.

I don't and he should stay in the job he is qualified to do and obviously loves.

Why would a headteacher being around a classroom cause suspicion,surely that's part of their job too.

FanjoForTheMammaries Tue 13-Nov-12 12:10:38

You wouldn't leave DD alone with your brother?

Just because he is a man? Or do you have reasons for this?

If the former I am incredibly shocked.

EchoBitch Tue 13-Nov-12 12:11:28

Not all men are abusers and most abused children are abused by someone they know who is often close to them/family.

bitsofmeworkjustfine Tue 13-Nov-12 12:11:36

because of family history... there is no proof that he did or he didnt, but i wont take the risk with my dd

IvorHughJanusAndABulgingSack Tue 13-Nov-12 12:11:47

You're wondering if your husband should quite his job because you've seen some comments on an anonymous internet forum which constitute- in your opion - a 'paedophile hysteria'?

Well, no, would be the answer to that, surely. confused

Another one who is shocked someone wouldn't leave their DD alone with their brother?? Really?? Your reasons for this are.....?

I agree it's a shame and no your DH shouldn't quit!

Sorry, x posted!

I think it's sad that people feel that way. My DH is amazing with children and really wants to set up as a childminder. But we really fear him getting no business just because he is a man.

fluffyraggies Tue 13-Nov-12 12:14:02

I've no problem with male teachers, coaches, TAs, doctors or any other certified member of staff dealing with my kids.

I do have a problem with hangers on, male or female, when there is meant to be close supervision going on.

megandraper Tue 13-Nov-12 12:14:45

'but i wouldnt leave her alone with my brother'

Oh dear bitsofme. That sounds problematic. Sorry about that. Dreadful.

I wouldn't / am not bothered by male coaches and am quite happy with the physical contact required for all sorts of sports coaching. However, I would be bothered by a coach or other person (male or female) who
- found repeated and unusual reasons to try and be alone with my DC
- made inappropriate comments about my or other DC
- was unnecessarily present while DC are changing clothes/using toilets etc.
- made my DC feel uncomfortable / creeped out in some way
- made me feel uneasy about them (has only happened once or twice and not with reference to my DC but for me as a teenager, turned out to be with good reason)
I think that's just common sense. It's certainly the safeguarding advice given by Kidpower and other knowledgeable bodies.

Hysteria and blind ignorance are not the only two options. I think most people are trying to steer a sensible path between the two.

bitsofmeworkjustfine Tue 13-Nov-12 12:15:31

having said that, my sister used a male childminder and was so pleased with him!

I meant that every individual situation needs dealing with as you see fit as a mum/dad/carer.

If someone makes you or your child uncomfortatble then you should deal with that situation.

weeblueberry Tue 13-Nov-12 12:16:12

Paedophile hysteria is pretty much everywhere sadly. My DP is a photographer and virtually any time he takes his professional camera out in a public place while he's alone, he sees parents scurrying to make sure their children are 'hidden'. It's not reserved for MN.

We were in a cafe one day and he was doing street shots while I went to get coffee. The couple behind us actually moved their entire table around so the child wasn't facing him and so the dad was in his way. I watched them whispering away from my place in the queue and when I came back and sat down at the table (which apparently made him less likely to be dodgy) they visibly relaxed.

He's also been asked if he was taking photos up girls skirts, if he has a 'licence' to be a photographer and to erase his images because someone's child MAY have been in them when he was taking photos at the Botanic Gardens. He's come home really pretty upset about it a good few times now and yet never seems to have these issues when he's with me. Man on his own - dodgy. Man with woman - safe it seems...

scaevola Tue 13-Nov-12 12:16:15

Gymnastics coaches shouldn't be working alone anyhow.

As long as there is another adult present, and he remains in public areas only, I do not see why there should be difficulty in his working as a coach.

Nancy66 Tue 13-Nov-12 12:16:26

No, don't be daft.

MN is full of hysterical women who don't let their kids walk to school until they're 16 and ring for an ambulance when their baby has a cold.

Hopeforever Tue 13-Nov-12 12:16:43

Not all offenders are male

Guess that means we can't leave our children with anyone

Rushes off to fetch children from scho.........

bitsofmeworkjustfine Tue 13-Nov-12 12:16:58

and if i felt wierd about a situation i would always err on the side of overprotectiveness for my dd.

MrsMelons Tue 13-Nov-12 12:17:26

I don't think anyone would have an issue with this situation as it is clear he is supposed to be there as the coach and is not randomly hanging around there.

I think with how society is these days it is necessary to take precautions with regards to not being left in vulnerable situations especially for the teacher/coach involved ie not being left on your own with a child etc. Not because I am thinking something may happen but sadly because people make up terrible lies and it protects the adult involved from this.

The dad handing round the nursery is a genuine issue in the same way as any random parent handing round the nursery when potentially they are distrating the staff away from doing their job.

dottyspotty2 Tue 13-Nov-12 12:17:44

You do realise it's not just men that abuse children don't you I never had a problem leaving my daughters with males and females known and trusted by us and I was severely abused by a family member.

marquesas Tue 13-Nov-12 12:17:57

I don't think he should quit, my DCs had a male swimming teacher who went in the pool with them and obviously had to hold them as they learnt. I can honestly say that in all the years I went to swimming lessons I never heard anyone ever mention that they weren't happy with male teachers.

When they were at nursery there was for a short time a male nursery nurse who didn't stay long as he struggled with the all female environment which I still think is a shame as he always seemed to be just as competant as the female staff.

MummyPig24 Tue 13-Nov-12 12:18:07

It's really bloody sad when someone won't risk leaving their dd with their own brother! What is the world coming to! There are no male teachers at ds school, serious lack of male role models in society for children. Women can be abusers too unfortunately, but we cannot suspect everyone of something sinister or we woud never live a normal life, neither would our children!

NigellasGuest Tue 13-Nov-12 12:20:36

have not seen the hysterical threads of which you speak, but my DD has 2 male ballet teachers and like your DH, they HAVE to be hands-on.
I trust them and they're never alone with DD anyway.
I'm guessing your DH is never alone with the gymnasts - that there's always another adult there?
I hope so - for his own protection too.

squeakytoy Tue 13-Nov-12 12:20:47

I feel very sorry for any man who wants to work with children these days. It seems that automatically he is under suspicion. sad

InSPsFanjoNoOneHearsYouScream Tue 13-Nov-12 12:20:53

He shouldn't quit. People are loons tbh.

I had male teachers for PE at school. If anything he should have been scared of us. Hormonal teenage girls around a very fit and good looking man grin

I don't automatically assume men are paedophiles because they are at a park or carrying a camera. That's mental.

Fakebook Tue 13-Nov-12 12:21:27

I must have by-passed all this "hysteria" on MN.

Yes it is sad that men can't work with children without being labelled as weird, but I honestly can say, that even if my dh did work with children I wouldn't think about asking him to stop just because a bunch of women with their knickers in a twist were saying its wrong on the Internet.

FellatioNelson Tue 13-Nov-12 12:21:39

I think the (relatively) recent public awareness of paedophilia and the refusal to brush it under the carpet these days is a good thing obviously, but one of the very sad results of this is that many people have stopped working with children, or being around children, especially voluntarily, because of the paranoia that surrounds men working with children.

We need people like your DH in our communities and it would be awful if he felt hounded out or lacked the confidence to continue, based on er....nothing at all. Perhaps he should write to the parents or have an informal meeting to ask what they think, and tell them that he is concerned that the physical contact (which is entirely necessary in order to fulfill his role properly) may be perceived as inappropriate, and that he needs to hear that the parents are supportive, and comfortable with what he needs to do? Perhaps he should insist that parents stay and watch ALWAYS to protect himself from any misunderstandings or false accusations that might arise?

Raspberrysorbet Tue 13-Nov-12 12:25:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EmpressOfTheSevenOceans Tue 13-Nov-12 12:26:34

I read the headmaster thread and to put it in context, he insisted on being in the female changing room when the staff were changing the DCs for swimming, took the OP's 3 year old DS off to the jacuzzi by himself and twice - once in the water, once in the classroom - held the DS in full body restraint on his lap for some time. I'd be bothered about that.

I don't think it bears any relation to your DH though, OP. He's clearly a professional doing the job he's good at and following the rules.

AnAirOfHopeForSnow Tue 13-Nov-12 12:28:03

Quit his job, no but be careful not to be put in any inappriote position,yes.

Everyone is a potental threat because i can not control their actions. I would perfer to be over protective than under protective and regret it.

It not just child sex abuse that concern me its how adults treat my children in genral like second class citizens.

I dont want negative opioins around my children that includes sexist racish or ageist pov from people my children are ment to look up to.

I think there are great role modles out there but they are few and far between sad

Startail Tue 13-Nov-12 12:29:01

DD has a male gym coach we are all very grateful for the hard work he puts in. The lads who teach swimming at are local pool are lovely.

Present attitudes stink and are narrowing opportunities for children.

Men daren't help with youth groups and adult groups daren't take younger members. My DH has helped with Guide event's, but he always feels happiest doing gate duty or carparks not anything with the girlssad

Dh and I have both chaperoned our teen DD to adult electronic and outdoor sports groups that she could perfectly well do alone because they are nervous that they'd need to CRB checks.

DD is 14 she knows the facts of life, she would know if someone was behaving in an inappropriate manner.

It's ridiculous, being 18 doesn't suddenly protect you from unwanted attention it just makes them feel the right to persist.

Yes sex abuse exists, but most of sadly is perpetrated by people far closer to home than the gym coach or the climbing instructor.

quoteunquote Tue 13-Nov-12 12:29:02

Dad, Uncle, Brother in that order, are the people most likely to abuse,

It's very sad when people feel the need to be very careful with their children safety,but this is the out come of abuse, those individuals that have abused children cause this, they are responsible for the damage.

I totally understand the caution, I myself do not automatically trust, because I was abused, and know how easily it can happen, and would be devastated if any of my children, ours or other were exposed to abuse.

My husband and I do a lot of activities with children, we are always cautious so as not to put anyone in a situation where a child could be vulnerable or an adult could be vulnerable to accusation,

Form a personal code of conduct and stick to it, and write one out for any organisation you take part in. cover any eventuality and everyone will be safe.

It's extremely important that positive male role models do not disappear from the childhood experience.

Our society needs to have a balanced input.

Raspberrysorbet Tue 13-Nov-12 12:29:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

redexpat Tue 13-Nov-12 12:30:14

There's definitely a balance to be reached isn't there.

A gym coach in the company of other adults and in full view of the parents is absolutely fine.

Going out of sight with ONE child is not.

As long as he never allows himself to be put in a position where someone could make an accusation then he'll be absolutely fine.

He shouldn't quit.

If anyone judges him for it, or questions his motives, they're the one with the problem.

UsedToBeAContender Tue 13-Nov-12 12:31:30

I quite agree. I'm interviewing for a new nanny and have a male candidate coming today. I've had some quite shocking comments, including from my own DM!!

shesariver Tue 13-Nov-12 12:35:52

This attitude was what prevented my DH setting up as a childminder when he initally thought of it. He was a SAHD and took our DS to toddler groups (he hated them to be honest but did it for DS) eventually made some friends there and someone suggested he become a CM. 2 years it took for him to apply because of fear of what people would think and would he get any children. Eventually after a lot of thought, money and hard work he was registered. Whether it was the economy just now or other opinions he had no children for 6 months - very soul destroying. But gradually through word of mouth and people knowing him (it helps that we live in a small town at times) he has built up a business and is really rather busy. And he loves it - hes a wonderful Dad and is very hands on when it comes to imaginative play - the kids all love him!!

And yes he still has came up against the view that there must be something wrong with him because of what he does, its very sad and also makes me angry at times because its like saying he will abuse children....just because hes a man. Interestingly for ages it was all boys he minded, only recently has he had a girl toddler and now will be getting a girl baby soon. One of his first Mums even admitted if she had a girl she woudlnt have used him!

Good luck statistically if your DH decides to go for it, if he wants any tips etc give me a message!

EmpressOfTheSevenOceans Tue 13-Nov-12 12:38:17

DD used to adore the bloke at her nursery. She invited him to Sunday lunch and said 'Then Mummy can mend your holey trousers.'

GossipWitch Tue 13-Nov-12 12:39:47

There are on average 250,000 convicted peodophiles in the uk, there are on average 59 million people living in the uk, that is a very small percentage of peodophiles imo, Its a sad world we live in if we judge people by a very small minority.

shesariver Tue 13-Nov-12 12:41:50

Everyone is a potental threat

I actually dont know whether to be angry or cry at that remark.

A balance has to be found about viewing the world as "bad" or "good" and risk at the end of the day, seeing the world as a dangerous place all the time is no good either.

Idocrazythings Tue 13-Nov-12 12:42:57

My dd has a male coach and has had male swimming teachers. I think it's good they get the male contact as teaching is so female dominated.

3bunnies Tue 13-Nov-12 12:46:04

Gym isn't compulsory unless in school. If parents aren't happy they will vote with their feet, doesn't sound as if they is doing that. It sounds as if there are always other people around. Imagine if he did quit and was replaced by someone who actually was an abuser. Let him keep enjoying the job he loves.

From my observations at secondary I think we as girls had more to fear from a couple of female PE teachers than any of the men in the school. They did have an unhealthy interest in checking we had certain knickers on and that we had through showers. Your dh is (I assume) one of the good guys he needs to be there to be a positive male role model.

fluffyraggies Tue 13-Nov-12 12:47:37

Will anyone come to this thread and admit it though? That they would feel uncomfortable enough about having a male child minder, or male swimming coach, or whatever, to withdraw the child from the class or not employ that childminder.

I will make a confession - i've said i'd be fine, but, thinking about it ...

Last year i sorted out some after school tutoring for my DD. The tutoring was for an hour in the tutors home, DD to be left there while i went off elsewhere. The tutor was male. I admit i wobbled a bitthe first couple of times i had to leave her. My DH insisted on coming with me to meet him at that first drop off to 'check him out'. The guy was CBR checked and of course and had shown me the cert. I actually said to DH it feels wrong leaving her!

I'm asking myself now if i would have been at all worried if the tutor had been female. I think i probably wouldn't. Perhaps i'm a bit hysterical then?

I got over the wobbles, and DD went to him weekly for 6 months. (Her maths improved enormously btw smile)

Was i being daft or was it just natural parental protectivness?

Its ridiculous. My dd (8) goes to cubs simply because it was closer to our house than brownies and our ds goes as well. I have had looks of horror because the leaders are men (although there is now 1 woman) and I leave my dd with them and send her on camps. FFS.

goralka Tue 13-Nov-12 12:48:36

all this talk of hysteria - well let's see if you were brought up in the seventies it is understandable - just off the cuff there was the playleader who was obsessed with asking girls if they had the cane at their schools, the middle school games teacher who enjoyed the girl's gymnastic lessons rather too much, especially when he 'had' to help them get over the horse, (to the full knowledge of his colleagues) - there was the neighbour who hugged just a bit too hard and long, the teaching colleague of a close relative who brought his gf for tea, never mind that she was in his sixth form, the female teacher 'getting off' with a 15 year old boy on a school weekend trip (to the full knowledge of her colleagues) - not to mention Top of the Pops seemingly being for the gratification of some vile old perverts and as for JIm'll fix it let's no go there - state sponsored child abuse.
so anyone who was brought up in that atmosphere - let alone the ones who were actually abused - who now has children is bound to be a little .....over cautious. Let's not call it hysteria, that belittles it.

FanjoForTheMammaries Tue 13-Nov-12 12:49:39

I was born in 1972 and dont agree

goralka Tue 13-Nov-12 12:50:14

and btw it is not ridiculous - your average peadophile will work hard to put himself in a position of responsibility around children - they are not weirdo's in macs.

goralka Tue 13-Nov-12 12:52:23

well perhaps you were too small to notice fanjo, I was born in the sixties and trust me they were all out there.

Viviennemary Tue 13-Nov-12 12:54:39

I don't think I'd be pleased if a random photographer started taking photos of me in the street or in a cafe. Whether they had a licence or not. Can't understand the poster who wouldn't let her child be alone in the same room as her brother. If I felt like that I wouldn't want to be in the same room as him either or in the same house.

Cardea Tue 13-Nov-12 12:55:32

fluffyraggies Tue 13-Nov-12 12:14:02

I've no problem with male teachers, coaches, TAs, doctors or any other certified member of staff dealing with my kids.

I do have a problem with hangers on, male or female, when there is meant to be close supervision going on.

fluffy what do you mean by "hangers on"? I volunteer at my child's school by reading, accompanying them on walks/ outings and I have given lifts to sporting events as without this help they would not be able to go and I want my DS to have the opportunity. I am CRB checked (for what that's worth), but I am not "certified" in any sense so in your view am I classed as a hanger on?
I'm a woman BTW so sorry if this slightly derails... just curious to know!

OP as long as your DH is following all guidelines he absolutely should not give up his job.

Aboutlastnight Tue 13-Nov-12 12:55:48

My DDs are taught swimming/ athletics/gymnastics by male coaches. All lovely young men who are enthusiastic and encouraging. It has never crossed my mind to be concerned in any way. They handle the children very well, keeping interaction appropriate, moving away from any over enthusiastic attempts at hugs from the kids.

happybubblebrain Tue 13-Nov-12 12:55:52

I think anyone who has been abused or has witnessed friends or relatives being abused is going to be cautious. That's not everyone, but it is probably the majority. There was a lot of it around me when I was growing up.

poorbuthappy Tue 13-Nov-12 12:57:45

Neither of the threads mentioned actually were paedo hysteria though.
The headmaster 1 was actually very disturbing and as the nursery 1, well I read it as a private nursery and to be honest I would want to know why another parent was in the nursery all the time sat chatting staff.

THERhubarb Tue 13-Nov-12 12:57:57

Take Mumsnet with a pinch of salt.

People tend to spout crap on here to get themselves attention and there is this mob mentality that once someone has lit the touchpaper, everyone gets involved. The extreme the opinion or reaction the more I tend to think that they are just after starting a bunfight or wanting to be the centre of attention.

I certainly would never ever let threads on Mumsnet dictate how I live my life or how people might perceive me.

This is not real life. You'd do well to remember that.

Aboutlastnight Tue 13-Nov-12 12:58:07

And it's a free country, you fon't need a licence to take pictures of people. And frankly what harm does it do?

fluffyraggies Tue 13-Nov-12 12:58:45

Cardea this thread started at the same time as (and the OP mentions) a thread about a man hanging round a nursery. That's what i mean by hangers on. Someone who's there for social reasons, not to support the staff.

Mumsyblouse Tue 13-Nov-12 12:59:46

My husband has worked as a tutor and won't tutor any under 16's now, even though it is good money. It's just not worth the risk. Everyone on here is saying 'well, if he never puts himself in a position to be accused'...but even if you ask parents to stay around, they are not necessarily sitting in the same room and watching the children all the time and in some ways, that would not be conducive to learning anyway. It's sad but many of the comments on here prove why- if you have to prove that no one ever could make an accusation to make yourself safe, by always having other staff around, that's impossible for certain groups who work primarily on their own with children, such as childminders, nannies or tutors (music, academic).

weeblueberry Tue 13-Nov-12 13:00:09

I don't think I'd be pleased if a random photographer started taking photos of me in the street or in a cafe. Whether they had a licence or not

He wasn't taking photos of people. He's taking photos of buildings, graffiti etc. But people suspect he's taking photos of them so they get awkward.

Also there's no such thing as having a licence to be a photographer which is why he was so confused when he was asked...

Cahoots Tue 13-Nov-12 13:00:12

Your DH does not need to quit and I wouldn't worry about having a male coach for my DC.
However, It would be sensible for him to make sure he is never put in an awkward situation to protect himself from any false allegations.

Cardea Tue 13-Nov-12 13:02:59

fluffy I missed that thread, thanks for clearing that up!

ENormaSnob Tue 13-Nov-12 13:07:05

It is ridiculous to suggest that all men are paedos.

However, it is just as ridiculous to pretend they don't exist.

It is frightening to realise, both on here and in rl, to realise just how many people have been victims of child abuse sad

fluffyraggies Tue 13-Nov-12 13:08:03

No probs cardea.

mumsy that's sad. DDs tutor was a great help to her, and i'm so glad i got over my wobbles she went to him. He gave her lots of confidence in herself, and was a bloody good tutor.

Aboutlastnight Tue 13-Nov-12 13:09:01

I don't see why our children's everyday, common sense interactions with adults should be dictated by a few perverts.

Narked Tue 13-Nov-12 13:10:55

Having read the precis of the 'headmaster' thread on here, it worries me greatly that you consider this hysteria OP.

crazygracieuk Tue 13-Nov-12 13:11:23

I read the nursery thread as "Help! The workers are focussing on one parent rather than my child."
The breakfast club one is weird as most people would not hug a child who said that they don't like it.

mummytime Tue 13-Nov-12 13:13:18

For his own protection he should operate the same guidelines as peripatetic music teachers do. (In their case it is very tricky as they are often 1 on 1, with even the door closed because of noise.)

However I haven't seen the hysterical threads you have referred to. Unless you meant the strange Dad who hugged a DD, and justified himself when she told him not to. In that case it was very odd behaviour, and a lack of respect for the boundaries of others.

FreudiansSlipper Tue 13-Nov-12 13:17:34

until we have more men working with young children and it is not seen as being unusual then attitudes will not change. I hope your dh carries on ds had a male worker at his first nurery (we moved that is why he changed nursery) he was great the children loved him as they did all the other nursery workers

fallingsun Tue 13-Nov-12 13:24:38

Fair enough there may be some 'hysteria' about paedophilia, but perhaps that's just because people are starting to wake up to the fact that there are a minority of adults, usually male, who are sexually attracted to minors. Those paedophiles try to get into situations where they will be able to abuse children. If your dh is never alone with the children I don't think he needs to worry.

I have some sympathy that the hysteria makes all men look like potential paedophiles, but I'd rather this than go back to past attitudes where abused victims were disbelieved, brushed under the carpet.

That's really interesting shesariver - we do have a friend who wants to use us as soon as he is set up which will probably be early next year. They have a little girl, but then I wonder if it will also help a little that our child is a girl?

It is tricky - he's been thinking about it for ages. So far I have only been able to find one other male solo childminder here (Edinburgh) and he has no mindees but he is newly registered too.

freddiefrog Tue 13-Nov-12 13:35:45

I feel quite sorry for men working/volunteering with children

My DH used to be a volunteer youth football coach.

We have daughters who are not in the slightest bit interested in football.

The amount of comments about why he was coaching was pretty shocking to be honest, people found it suspicious that he would volunteer for such a thing if his own kids weren't involved - he likes football, enjoys working with kids and is generally a nice bloke who was talked into it by our next door neighbour who was desperate for volunteers

BreconBeBuggered Tue 13-Nov-12 13:39:37

There is hysteria, and it's been around a good while before the Savile revelations. It can be illogical too. Parents outside my DS's school joked about a young male student teacher being a 'paedo' (sure, hilarious) but moaned that the school needed a male headteacher. I know a good few men who are terrified of unwittingly finding themselves alone with a child and refuse to even consider taking paid or voluntary posts where this might happen.
I say this as someone who grew up in the 70s and can vouch for the casual groping and inappropriate sexual relationships being commonplace.

darnoc Tue 13-Nov-12 14:24:03

Gossipwitch said "There are on average 250,000 convicted peodophiles in the uk". Where are these figures from Gossipwitch?

The BBC reports child sex offence convictions as follows

2005: 1,363
2006: 1,675
2007: 1,747
2008: 1,888
2009: 1,916
2010: 2,135
Source: Ministry of Justice


Yes, it is serious, but please let us be accurate, not alarmist!

Cluffyfunt Tue 13-Nov-12 14:35:46

Most people are not peados.

Some people chose a job working with children and use their position of trust to abuse the children in their care

Most wouldn't,but some do.

I will be vigilant with my dc safety in all ways that I can.
Op I don't think your DH should quit.
Children need good male and female role models.
I would just make sure he was never alone with a child (not his own though!) to protect himself.

letsgomaths Tue 13-Nov-12 14:40:32

No no, no no, and no. Your DH should not quit!

To do so would be succumbing to the notion that "everyone with a penis is a threat", which has caused innocent people from paediatricians to pedestrians to be attacked in the street, and it would be a victory for mob hysteria if your DH did quit simply because of this.

I myself used to worry about the same thing, then I learned about "DM mob hysteria".

dottyspotty2 Tue 13-Nov-12 14:41:55

I don't think its being alarmist there only figures for known offenders who are convicted and found guilty another that I know of was added to the list on Thursday and is now registered remember not all are found guilty either some extremely clever lawyers out there who try to pull victims apart in court.

Fairyegg Tue 13-Nov-12 14:45:11

No! Ds has a male gymlastics coach. He's great with ds (and the other kids). There's not enough male teachers / instructors nowadays IMO, probably because they are to scared of being accused of something.

dottyspotty2 Tue 13-Nov-12 14:45:52

But still think your DH shouldn't quit he's not done anything wrong and if he quits people may question why he has done so.

goralka Tue 13-Nov-12 14:51:37

it's actually quite an odd OP, re-reading it.
If your husband has nothing to hide, why on earth would he want to quit now?

Cluffyfunt Tue 13-Nov-12 14:53:01

Are there many cases of malicious false allegation against innocent men?
Serious question,I have no idea.

People used to say that men should protect themselves from women who would 'cry rape', but now we know that it is unlikely.

Are people hysterical or are we more likely to believe a child and want to prosecute a peadophile?

goralka Tue 13-Nov-12 14:56:14

I doubt it cluffyfunt, seriously - really really odd - complaining about 'hysteria' ffs

RyleDup Tue 13-Nov-12 14:56:47

Why should he quit. Its a male gym teacher who runs our holiday club, along with his son. Theres no female adults. I happ

dottyspotty2 Tue 13-Nov-12 14:56:58

Cluffyfunt Takes a hell of a lot to get it to court the CPS only proceed with cases they are sure they will get a conviction out of lots of cases are historic still as well.

RyleDup Tue 13-Nov-12 14:57:59

Pressed send to quick.
.... I happily send my dd to that, as do others with their dd's. Its never occured to me not to trust him.

Greensleeves Tue 13-Nov-12 14:59:27

it's not just women on MN who have these prejudices

Just been talking to dh about it and he confirmed that he would wonder about a male childminder, and that if he was looking on Gumtree etc for a nanny and there were just several names, he wouldn't choose a man

Personally I think that although it is very sad for men who are talented at working with children and represent no harm, it's hard to get away from the fact that most sexual abuse against children is perpetrated by men - women have far more access to young children and STILL sexual abusers are overwhelmingly more likely to be men - so the prejudice isn't entirely groundless and it isn't going to go away.

Cluffyfunt Tue 13-Nov-12 15:13:54

Tell me about it angry

I can categorically state that there are child abusers out there who are not on any register and have no criminal records.

I am married to a lovely man, have many trustworthy men in my family and know quite a few men that are not any risk to children.
I don't hate men at all and I don't think I'm hysterical in the slightest.

I sent my own DC's to a male tennis coach and love the fact that at pre-school age they had the opportunity to see a man in a role like that. They also have a male teacher for trampolining , and I feel the same way about that. In all honesty, I don't know how I would feel about a male childminder, actually I'm not a fan of childminders full stop and have never use done. I wouldn't have aproblem with sending my child to a nursery where there was a male member of staff and yet conversely I haven't encouraged my 19 year old to go into a chilcare profession because of concerns over allegations. He would be fantastic with little ones, but I do worry about how he might be percieved. (I haven't discouraged him either, and would support him if it was something he felt strongly about, it's just something I can see him enjoying and he has no idea what to do as a career). I don't think your DH should resign and I really hope he doesn't, I do however understand why you feel this way. I think it's very sad.

PenguinSalute Tue 13-Nov-12 23:18:49

But I don't understand the argument of people who are saying it's not hysteria- even if it's not, and child sex abuse is more widespread than some people are aware of, why are we just focussing on males? As someone that works in rehabilitation of offenders, I come into contact with female sex offenders with great regularity.

It concerns me that the people who talk about viewing males as a threat etc think they are doing everything they can to protect their children,yet are seemingly overlooking the fact that females can be a
risk too- it's that attitude that can end up leaving things to be overlooked/disregarded- which is one of the main reasons abuse by female perpertrators can go unnoticed for extreme lengths of time.

AnyFucker Tue 13-Nov-12 23:29:01

my H is an athletics coach and has never considered giving it up for this reason (he is a volunteer, so could be classed as a "hanger on" I suppose)

he is CRB checked, but as everyone knows, all that means is that up until the day of the check, you haven't actually been caught yet (if you are guilty of something)

I have enhanced CRB disclosure for my job, but since I haven't had a new job in years, it means fuck-all

OP, your H should carry on what he is doing

neuroticmumof3 Tue 13-Nov-12 23:34:42

DD had a male nursery worker for 2 years, he was fantastic and she adored him. I would not be worried about male gym/swim coaches who have to, at times, have physical contact with my children. I would be more wary of any adults who have an emotional 'importance' to my child. I think child sexual abuse often has a significant emotional/psychological element to it; victims often want to please/appease the abuser. Penguin, you make a good point about gender blindness when it comes to child sex abuse.

LivesInJeans Tue 13-Nov-12 23:49:04

Hysteria? Bit harsh. I was born in the 60s. My Dads best man tried to groom my brother, my history teacher had an affair with a girl in my class, a colleague at works' Dh was imprisoned for his activities as a scoutmaster, choir leader at Church was cautioned for lewd behaviour in public toilets, friends son was groomed by the family GPs wife (couldn't make some of these up!)

Of those... One went to prison.
It's out there.

I strongly believe the best way to protect your DC is to make them confident and encourage them they would be believed if they came to you with an issue.

My DP is also athletics coach. He takes sensible precautions. Any person who wishes to declare it all 'hysteria' and prove it by ignoring the sensible precautions is putting themself at risk or has an ulterior motive.

Should he resign? No that would be hysterical

LivesInJeans Tue 13-Nov-12 23:51:02

Two of the above abusers were women btw

My DD has male swimming teachers. I'm fine with that. I think they are great. Previous swim club had a male teacher who made me very uneasy. No evidence. No clear reason. We left though.

Cathycomehome Wed 14-Nov-12 00:31:12

I read up to page three, so forgive me f I missed something, but... My partner of thirteen years, the father of my children, my NON PAEDOPHILE partner is a primary school teacher. As am I actually. I would be VERY upset if people thought he was in some way weird because of his job.

ecohippo Wed 14-Nov-12 01:00:56

Okay I did want to post anon but anyway. I feel so angry that someone is trying to push this under the carpet as a 'hysteria'. It is about time that children were protected from men (or women) who want to use them for their own gratification.

I was born in the 80s and I know way too many who have been sexually abused. I was sexually abused as a child and am only just coming to terms with it now as a married mother. It damaged me so much that I actually purposefully forgot large buts of my childhood so much that people would have to tell ME what I was like/did.

I was abused by my uncle whilst he was staying at our home regularly. I remember feeling that I was the naughty one/maybe I like it. I was aged about 6-8. I Didn't even show any signs of puberty. If I tell you what he did you would probably throw up over your computer. I was abused by my older cousin when I went to stay at my aunts house. Yes I still went back and wanted to go back to stay at my aunts and would not avoid my abuser. I just acted normal. I was asked sexual questions by another cousin who use to tell me how I could do things. This was all whilst I was in primary school btw.

I have a friend who's step dad tried to rape her and she managed to injure him to get away.

I know another person who was abused by her cousin.

Another who did things with her brother/cousin. It came to light her brother also abused another cousin.

Another who said that it was pretty common in her time for cousins to 'mess around' together.

My sisters tutor in college (last year) said some every sexual things to some of the girls in her class including her as a 'joke'. She said she felt very uncomfortable and couldn't wait for the year to end. She came to hate that teacher and only says he is disgusting.

my secondary school teacher slept with one of the kids on a school trip. I don't know what happened to her.

Non of these people who were abused ever reported it to the police.

So I can understand someone not wanting to leave their children around their own brother. I would feel uncomfortable too. Not because I think my brother would do anything. But because I'm sure my father never thought his brother would abuse me! No one would tell you what they are doing to your child and go to great lengths to hide it. Also children are very good at pretending everything is normal.

My children won't sleep over another person's house except my mother's. When we all stay together I make sure girls and boys are separated.

It is sad but unfortunately this thing happens much more than it should.

Paedophile hysteria?!! Don't make me laugh! It is not spoken about enough.

Your question.I gather it is rhetorical yes?

maddening Wed 14-Nov-12 07:20:55

But the teacher wasn't just in the gym class - there was some odd behaviours that would make anyone uneasy.

And the man hanging round the nursery was not employed there - and she wasn't suggesting he was there in a paedophile capacity- she was annoyed he was taking up nursery workers time as they were distracted from their work and chatting to him.

I don't think people make accusations of paedophilia lightly at all.

LivesInJeans Wed 14-Nov-12 07:38:15

Dismissing one thread as hysteria when it had classic signs of an abuser in action (someone leaving career in UK to work in area without CRB checks, isolating a child and insisting on being present in situations where children are undressed but there is no need to and taking small child to sit on his the jacuzzi alone?)is really worrying. Either a deliberate attempt to mislead or a plain lack of appreciation of how paedophiles work. I have trained in safeguarding adults/children and work with sex offenders. The one biggest impression made on me when I started work was how many of these men (my clients are all men) don't present as weird, odd or creepy. Prison staff told me that's very normal and they wouldn't be able to offend if they didn't have the ability to lull parents into trusting them. About 50% have loving families, wives, own DC (usually adult). No flags apparent.

Do I think we shouldn't trust any man? Not at all I do think same rules should apply to men/women/family and mean inappropriate behaviour is not allowed. Most abuse continues because adults ignore it. The fear of being seen as hysterical is a good barrier to adopting healthy child protection.

FanjoForTheMammaries Wed 14-Nov-12 07:39:54

The implication was there about the father at nursery when she said she wanted him CRB checked. Just saying.

cory Wed 14-Nov-12 07:48:21

First of all, I still think the hysterics are in a minority- and if you have been on MN for any length of time you will have noticed that they always get laughed at here.

Secondly, there was a thread only the other day about a poster who suspected (with good reasons, it seemed) that her child was at risk of abuse from her grandmother. And listen to Penguin further upthread- as a professional she sees female abusers very regularly. Posters who believe they are keeping their child safe because they are only leaving them unsupervised with women are burying their heads in the sand. There is absolutely no reason to believe that a child will be safe just because s/he is only left with female relatives.

The only thing that will keep a child safe is a parent who can tell the difference between normal and abnormal behaviour and a child who also knows the difference and feels confident enough to tell. Imo for a child to develop their abnormality radar, they need to come into contact with a wide range of normal, non-abusive adults, not be left cocooned in their own nuclear family with no experience of the outside world. A confident child, as LivesInJeans puts it.

MrsMelons Wed 14-Nov-12 14:11:47

The father at the nursery is potentially not a volunteer and actually just a 'hanger on'. Thats what people meant.

Both my boys have male teachers (they are at infant school) and it has never crossed my mind to be concerned in the sameway I wouldn't be concerned if they were women. They have male instructors at out of school clubs too and it really hasn't crossed my mind that they are in danger. All adults in a position of trust should ensure they protect themselves from false allegations.

I know a couple of teachers who have been falsly accused of things (not necessarily sexual harrassment or anything like that) but they have allowed themselves to be in a position where things can be made up about them. One instance I know of was a girl in my class saying a female teacher hit her - she openly admitted to us she made it up but the teacher was alone with her so she realised the 'opportunity'. Awful stuff and not a good outcome.

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