top of page

Top Reactions To Sex Trafficking

Monarch resting on finger
Freedom To Move How And When You Want

I write about human rights violations here in the United States. My recent research has been on domestic sex trafficking. Many people ask how I keep from getting depressed about it.


I find not talking about it depressing.


The only way we fix things is to name the problem and then go from there. There are a lot of people working on this modern day slavery. Polaris Project does extensive work with all types of human trafficking. Take a look at their data.


When it comes to conversations about sex trafficking, readers/listeners fall into four groups. Maybe there’s more, but so far, here are the top reactions to sex trafficking:


Group 1 Those Who Really Care


“What?! Does it really go on here in the States? Why aren’t their parents aware?!”


I can tell how people feel about minors in sex trafficking once I mention it. First, the tilt of the head, or raised eyebrows, or drop of the jaw. Or, all three in quick succession.


Then, more questions. Lots of questions.


I don’t mind the questions. Ask away because that means you’re trying to figure out how a 12, 14, 16, or 18 year old can be manipulated into sex trafficking.


I had questions. That’s why I started looking for answers … and haven’t stopped. I research online and talk to people who work with the victims->survivors->thrivers. I ask a lot of questions. They know I care because of the questions.


I know you care because of the questions.


If you want to educate yourself even more,  here is a free online course (from Polaris) to get certified identifying human trafficking in the USA. It takes about ten minutes of your time. Once you know what to look for, you'll always be aware.



Group 2 Those That Refuse To Believe


“Oh, come on. Sex trafficking only happens in third world countries.”


This is denial - which is a very safe place to be if you’re not being trafficked.


Instead of asking questions, deniers don’t want to think these behaviors happen in the house down the street, the next town over, or within their children’s friend groups.


Deniers tell me I don’t know what I’m talking about and then they change the subject or walk away.


Deniers protect their view of the world.


The sexual exploitation of children in the USA is intricately linked with abusers from around the world. In 2008 the Department of Justice formed The National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention. Here is their 2023 report to Congress.



Group 3 Those That Benefit


“They get paid for their services and they get paid well.”


I’m left wondering about this person’s experience with the sex trade. Maybe through online services? They think it a totally acceptable way to earn a living. This group believes that if a person didn’t want to be part of the sex trade, they wouldn’t do it.


This may be true for a small group of men and women (for a while). But never for a minor.


People are kept in the sex trade through coercion, fear, hunger and homelessness. These are not free choices.


It’s called survival sex for a reason and is a human rights violation. Here are examples of how someone ends up being sex trafficked.



Group 4 Those That Don’t Care Because They Can’t




Sometimes, it hurts too much to care.


People have lives that are filled with their own pain, sorrow, or anxiety. You can see it in their eyes when conversations center on hardships other people are going through.


They just don’t have any space to get behind someone else’s cause. Sex trafficking is not pretty and it is endless. It’s been going on since the beginning of time.


For people in the ‘silence’ group, the topic becomes another layer of depression.


When I see/hear no reaction, I remember that life is difficult for many people.

Perhaps sexual exploitation is part of their own personal story.





If you have a few seconds, check out one or two of the links I put on this blog and start talking about domestic sex trafficking, sexual exploitation.


What reaction do you get from people?


Talking about things is the first step to change.


Welcome to the conversation.


Featured Posts

Recent Posts
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page