Predators may be closer than you think

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Do you feel safe in your home? Well, I did, until I was recently educated about sex trafficking, which I thought occurred mostly in larger cities. Wrong! It is happening anywhere there is access to Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other forms of social media.

A simple compliment from a predator can be a source of grooming. This often continues as long as it takes to gain trust and control. Once trusted, the brainwashing nightmare occurs.

Victims rarely discuss the details. They feel ashamed, trapped, alone, abused and threatened. Social media has no boundaries. Unaware, family and friends are used against the victim as a threat to remain silent.

Wake up, pay attention, care, and don’t be afraid to ask your loved ones about their social media use. Parents, take caution and don’t be afraid to look at your kid’s phone (you own it). Don’t be afraid to say, “NO!” Remember, YOU are in control.

You would be amazed to know these predators may be as close as next door, and they look like you or me. Unfortunately, it could be someone we know and trust. Let’s join forces and fight these Monsters and save OUR kids.

Sheelia Miller

Superior, MT

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