12 GoodLifeFamilyMag.com MARCH | APRIL 2019 Very Inspiring Person AWARD BY KARYN BRODSKY They say silence is golden. That silence is what child sexual abuse offenders depend on when perpetrating their crimes. Its use is manipulative and can produce fear, shame, and punishment. For Jenna Quinn of Melissa, TX, it was breaking the silence that led to the conviction of her predator. It also provided her with the strength to help educate others about the signs of child sexual abuse and resulted in the passing of Jenna’s Law. While she was growing up in Carrollton, TX, Jenna’s parents workedhardandmadesacrifices,soshecouldattendprivateschool. They thought that by sending her to private school, Jenna would be protected from bad influences. Her family and the family of her sexual predator met when she was in second grade, and he started to groom Jenna when she was 12. Grooming happens over time as the offender gains trust and access to the child in order to sexually abuse them. Jenna explains that grooming is a gradual process and not a single event. “Over 90% of the time a child is abused by someone they know and trust. Perpetrators use the relationship to the child as a deposit for their silence,” Jenna says. “It’s easier to tell on a stranger than it is a trusted family member, coach, or loved one.” By the time Jenna was 16, she was just a shell of her former self. She went from a vibrant young girl to a withdrawn, anxious, depressed, and suicidal teen who suffered from insomnia and night terrors. Her innocence had been stolen, and she lost her will to BREAKING THE SILENCE PREVENTING CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE WITH EDUCATION AND AWARENESS Since 2004, Jenna Quinn has spoken at over 100 Children’s Advocacy Centers across the country and has truly dedicated her life to “Stopping the Silence as a Voice for the Voiceless.” “OVER 90% OF THE TIME A CHILD IS ABUSED BY SOMEONE THEY KNOW AND TRUST.”