Prayers For The Stolen: A Reminder of What Can Happen Anywhere

It felt like not too long ago that I was a mom of boys... Honestly, before I had A I was afraid of having a girl. I wrote about it when reading another From Left To Write pick. Funny, I was writing about it as hypothetical thing then... IF I have a girl. Why I was afraid of what that COULD mean. And then it happened. And a year and a half later I'm still unsettled about what the world can do to a female.

Bringing a girl into the world is a beautiful thing. People ask me all the time whether it feels different from having boys. It does, but it doesn't. The biggest difference is the concern I feel for her future.  I know that boys aren't guaranteed safety, but females are more vulnerable in this world. Period. And that scares me for A. She is more vulnerable physically. More likely to be objectified. Faces more pressure in very different ways.

Reading Prayers for the Stolen just reminded me of that reality. It feels silly to show concern as I type this from my cozy, safe suburban couch after reading about what the women in the book face in trying to keep their daughters safe. A very real life for far too many young girls in this world, I thought. 

So, while I sat here feeling all cozy I wondered just how safe we are here. It's easy to think that human trafficking is one of those issues that isn't that big of a deal for our children in the U.S. We all know that there is human trafficking in the U.S., but what's the reality?

Turns out Illinois is one of the least safe states. According to the Polaris Project, the top five states for human trafficking are:
1. California
2. Texas
3. Florida
4. New York
5. Illinois

So, who is at risk? According to The Covering House, 300,000 children are at risk for being trafficked in the U.S. That's just children.

All too often we feel like things aren't happening here, but they are... And, trust me, I know that there is no comparison to the real, daily threat that millions of people face every day in other areas of the world. And I also know that the real threat is based on many other factors. However, that's not my point. My point is: We're all at risk if any one in the world is at risk.

This post was inspired by the novel Prayers for the Stolen by Jennifer Clement.  Ladydi was grew up in rural Mexico, where being a girl is a dangerous thing.She and other girls were “made ugly” to keep protect them from drug traffickers and criminal groups. Join From Left to Write on February 18 we discuss Prayers for the Stolen. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.


Char said...

So very true. I believe most persons in the US don't think we have ANY human trafficking here. But you are right and it is a very real problem here and worldwide.

Eva said...

This is sad, but true. I watched a movie about it just the other day, and the title had my daughters name in it...so freaked out. This book had me all wound up over my daughter's safety. You have to be careful everywhere.

Thien-Kim aka Kim said...

You are so right. We can't just hide behind the "safety" of living in the united States.

Martha said...

I'm sure as a mother this book definitely hit home! I cannot believe how frequently this kind of stuff happens.

Cupcake Kelly said...

I have a son, but if I ever have a girl I know I will have the same fears.

janaki said...

I had my daughter first, and now I have sons. It's funny - I never really worried about her, as she is so very much her own person, and heaven help anyone who messes with her (and she's always been that way). I worry now more for my sons, as they have dark skin, and, particularly in the shadows of the Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis cases, I worry so much for what they may encounter as young black men, in just a few years.
Wouldn't it be great if we could all raise our kids free of these worries?

Laura @ This is Thirty said...

I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't know how much trafficking happened in the states, even in North Dakota where I live. It is so important to bring awareness to this and we all need to work to fight it!