As a follow up to our recent blog, which discussed the right age for parents to allow their children to roam about a cruise ship on their own, we wanted to discuss the following case. As can be seen in this video, in 2009 a teenager named Taylor was cruising with her parents when one night she found herself unable to sleep. Feeling that the ship was safe, Taylor went alone to an upper deck of the ship to write in her journal and pass the time.
What happened next is truly terrifying. A Carnival Cruise Lines employee, 30-year-old Heri Krispiyanto, came across Taylor and attacked her, pulling her into a secluded part of the ship and brutally raping her.
"He pulled me into an employee-only room. I asked him what he was doing and he told me that he was going to take care of me,” Taylor told ABC News. "He raped me, I kept saying, 'No,' but he didn't care,” she said.
When Taylor returned to her cabin room, she did not reveal to her parents what had just happened to her. She kept her ordeal hidden from her parents for a full three months, as she became depressed while dealing with the trauma alone.
Every parent must decide whether or not their children are ready to go off on their own while aboard a cruise ship. But when children are finally ready for some freedom, parents should have a frank conversation about the dangers, including sexual assault, and what to do if the worst should happen.
For more information on what you should do if you or your children are ever sexually assaulted or raped aboard a cruise ship, click here.