First of all, I have to say it’s interesting that my husband and I share the same names with authors Justin and Lindsey! Of course that’s not why I decided to read God Made All of Me but it was a fun coincidence.
As soon as I saw that this book was about helping children protect their bodies, I knew I had to get it for my kids. With all the scary news we hear these days about the sexual abuse of children, it is at the forefront of my mind. I have a seven year old boy and six year old daughter that are now away from me many hours of the day between school and extra-curricular activities. It’s scary. It’s scary to know that they are not always in my control and I can’t protect them every minute of the day. That’s why it’s so important to teach them to protect themselves.
God Made All of me teaches kids about their bodies and what is ok and what isn’t when it comes to touching and privacy. This book is very straight forward and bold as it needs to be when it comes to this topic. I’m not going to lie; it resulted in many giggles from my kiddos, especially the first few times we read it. I had to let them get this out of their system before we could really talk about it.
Since both have required reading for school, I have my oldest read to my middle child. After they got the giggles out, I decided I needed to read it to them instead. They just couldn’t get past the body parts. Then we had a very serious discussion that has been ongoing for the past several weeks. This book really opened up the lines of communication on the topic of abuse.
When I say it’s straightforward, I mean that it specially lists the body parts that are not ever ok to touch. That is what my children thought was so funny but it really is important to list them specifically. Some might be obvious and others might not, especially at their age. There is a section at the end of the book that’s really helpful called 9 Ways to Protect Your Children from Sexual Abuse and number two is teaching them the correct name of private body parts. This helps avoid confusion on everyone’s part and enables them to have the proper vocabulary they need to identify anything inappropriate and God forbid, should they need it in court one day.
I think one really important distinction this book made is that it’s ok to tell someone you don’t want to be hugged. So many people force their kids to hug adults when they don’t want to. This teaches them to do something even though they are uncomfortable with it. I’m not a touchy feely person so I don’t do a whole lot of hugging. Even as a child it made me uncomfortable. Hugs can begin as an adult “grooming” a child for abuse and if we teach them that they have to do this; it’s hard for them to draw the line. If something makes them uncomfortable, they should be able to say no; even if it really is an innocent hug.
The simple illustrations go a long way in connecting kids with the words, especially if you have a visual learner like my daughter. And no, there are not pictures of actual private parts so don’t worry!
I had already been talking to my kids about this subject before reading God Made All of me and we have continued to have an open dialogue on the subject since reading it. They are starting to do things like sleepovers and campouts and I really need to equip them to protect themselves. Half the battle is educating them. This book was an incredible tool in talking to them about it and helping them understand it on their level; even if their level involves lots of giggles!
About the Book
“God made every part of you!”
It’s easy to convey the message to children that their bodies—or particular parts of their bodies—are shameful. This misconception fuels confusion, embarrassment, and secrecy, and often prevents children from recognizing or reporting sexual abuse.
God Made All of Me is a simply-told, beautifully-illustrated story to help families talk about these sensitive issues with two- to eight-year-old children. Because the private parts of our bodies are private, the home is the ideal environment where a child should learn about his or her body and how it should be treated by others.
God Made All of Me starts from the fundamental truth that God created everything and applies that truth—the doctrine of creation—to kids and their bodies. It equips parents to talk with both boys and girls about their bodies and to help them understand the difference between the appropriate and inappropriate touch of others. God Made All of Me allows families to build a first line of defense against sexual abuse in the safety of their own homes.
God Made All of Me is the first children’s book written by Rid of My Disgrace authors Justin and Lindsey Holcomb. Parents of young children themselves, the Holcombs regularly counsel victims of sexual abuse and are profoundly aware of the dangers kids face. Their simple and relatable story, designed to help children protect their bodies, will be an important resource for every family with young children.
About the Authors
Justin Holcomb, PhD, is an Episcopal priest and professor of theology and Christian thought at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Reformed Theological Seminary. He is the author of On the Grace of God, Know the Heretics, and Know the Creeds and Councils, as well as the coauthor of Is It My Fault? and Rid of My Disgrace. He also serves on the boards for REST (Real Escape from the Sex Trade) and GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in Christian Environments).
Lindsey Holcomb, MPH, counsels victims of sexual assault and domestic violence and is the cofounder of REST (Real Escape from the Sex Trade). Lindsey has provided crisis intervention to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence and conducted a variety of training seminars to service providers. She is also the coauthor of Is It My Fault? and Rid of My Disgrace.
Connect with Justin Holcomb
Connect with Lindsey Holcomb
Buy the Book
Other Titles from Justin and Lindsey Holcomb
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