Thursday, February 16, 2012
You may wonder how we missed that our child was being groomed and had been sexually molested. A pedophile grooms the entire family and gains trust of everyone around the targeted child. It's almost ALWAYS someone the family knows and loves.
"People who are predators are really good at seducing children. This is their job. This is what they do. If they do it well, you are seduced before you know it. You don't know that it's seduction, that's the whole point..." ~from a TV special~
A church is ideal grounds to groom families. Our church was set-up to be very family oriented. Most of the families home schooled and integrating all ages is the norm. Pedophiles are typically patient and watch for vulnerabilities in the targeted family.
Our family was particularly vulnerable. Just in a years time prior to Patrick's crimes against our child, there was cancer in our immediate family, we had a new born, and moved twice.
The Rojas family was always there to help us. Patrick started tutoring one of our children and taking him on as a "little brother in Christ" type mentoring. This is every parents dream. A seemly Godly young man taking time out of his life to encourage another whom is younger. Our family welcomed the involvement. This is how Patrick gained access to the victim child.
Anything that might of normally been a "red flag" was easily explained away because of how "Godly, caring, and humble," the Rojas family was. I did have some "gut" feelings but didn't pay attention and act on them. I thought my "paranoia" was born out of my own life experiences. I will never ignore my gut again.Our children were not able to go on sleep overs (with rare exceptions) for the simple fact we didn't want them vulnerable to sexual abuse. Our kids were almost always supervised around other children for the same reason. Because of my background I am always suspicious of others.
There were a few times we knew Patrick left our child a note that read "Smile Jesus loves you" (with a smiley face) and would leave a few pieces of candy. I would tell myself, "How thoughtful, Patrick knew that this child would feel left out because they weren't going and doing x,y or z like their sibling was." Perfectly logical, he's from a family with 13 siblings who are taught to think of others. He also didn't just single out the victim, he would mix it up and sometimes give treats to all the kids. Patrick was always the "thoughtful guy."
Does too good to be true come to your mind?
Let's not forget that he had help from his parents, Eddie and Kathy Rojas along with Jairus, all of whom had knowledge of Patrick's pedophilia behaviors long before we reported the crimes against our family.
*Parts are from the original "Questions" post.