Grooming is a something that some people use to trick young people into thinking they have a trusting relationship with them. Groomers will do this over a long period of time and will work hard to develop an emotional connection with the young person. In some cases groomers will also groom the young person’s family, so that they are able to manipulate, exploit and sexually abuse the young person. Groomers will work very hard to gain a young person’s trust and to make them feel special; this can take place over weeks, months or even years.
Who can be a groomer?
Groomers are not always strangers – they could be a family member, a friend or a neighbour.
It can be difficult to understand when grooming is happening because often the groomer will make the child believe that they are in a relationship that is ‘normal’.
Grooming can happen face-to-face or online.