It has come to light today that our 10-year-old adopted son has sexually violated our 3-year-old birth child. My husband asked me to please do some research to find out the best way to deal with the situation and work with our adopted boy. We have always appreciated your zero-tolerance for adult sexual abusers… now I wonder what we are to do with young abusers/molesters! So often in Christian circles it is hushed up and ‘forgotten’ in the name of Christian forgiveness or some such thing. Do you have counsel to us in our situation? Our adopted son has only been with us for a little over a year. We have several children: birth children, and adopted children (all from the same African orphanage). Apparently, boys ‘laying’ on girls was a frequent game at the orphanage at night when the nannies were visiting outside in the courtyard. I am sick with the thought of him violating our innocent daughter and sick with the thought of what else he has done and what else he might do. We went into the adoption with our eyes open, knowing that he may have problems in this area and therefore very ‘careful’ with not leaving him alone with the young ones and laying down strict rules… but after a year perhaps we were more trusting and he became more ‘relaxed.’ It happened at a group play time— he can’t be watched ALL the time! Please share any advice with us on how to proceed with him! And then there is our 3-year-old to think about.

Michael answers:

I have warned over and over again against adopting children older than any of your children. The rule is that children raised in orphanages or passed around in government programs are victims of molestation and are molesters themselves. I have heard countless tragic stories. A molesting youth is virtually incurable until he gets old enough to be saved and take charge of his own lusts, submitting them to Christ. If there is a way to give him back to the government or turn him over to an organization that is equipped to deal with this sort of thing, then do so. Otherwise report him to the authorities and have him removed from your home.