Dr. Michelle Golland: It seems almost every day we are hearing about another young teenage boy seduced into an "affair" with an older woman who was his teacher, coach, or the mom of his best friend. Make no mistake: these women are sexual predators and it is high time our society starts treating them as such.
The cycle of emotional and physical damage caused by this type of abuse will last a young boy's lifetime if not worked through in therapy. As a society, we have in the past chalked this behavior up to "young boys just getting lucky" and "I wish I had a teacher that wanted to have sex with me," but these are simply ill-informed statements with total disregard for the true fall-out for these boys.
First, you must know that the women who fall into the "Teacher/Lover" category of female sexual offenders are highly manipulative and groom their victims in a similar way to male sexual predators. They pick vulnerable kids who are looking for attention and approval that may seem lacking within their own home environment.
These women believe they have a "special bond" with the child and usually don't believe they have done anything wrong at all because it was "love." Her motives for the sexual offenses are to teach them sexually and obtain love and attention from the child.
These female sexual predators want power and control and admiration from their victim. The young prepubescent or adolescent boys are easily manipulated due to their own lack of self-esteem and confusion and insecurities that many teens experience. The fact that adolescence is when they pull away from their parents and want to forge a new identity makes teens easy prey for these abusive women.
How can we protect our sons? We should, as much as possible, thoroughly know who our boys are spending time with outside of our presence. If there seems to be too much interest from one adult, then question what is going on in that relationship. Many parents of victims report having had suspicions but pushed them aside because it was a female and not a male teacher or coach.
It is our job to be vigilant and protect our children. We should also demand that these women are sentenced on par with their male counterparts. We need to bring this issue to light and create awareness for the past victims to receive the help they need and to give hope to the victims of today.
|Dr. Golland is a USC graduate and a licensed Clinical Psychologist (PSY#16974). She works with adults, teens and is an expert in the field of marriage and relationships. Dr. Golland has given her expert advice on CNN, HLN, MSNBC, ABC, and Fox news. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and wonderfully exhausting two children.|