“Do you know what child porn is?” she asked me. A string of god-awful words came out of her mouth. “Infant decapitation” were just two of them. Cindy* [Not her real name -- RD] spent years as a member of the CyberTips team at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, processing thousands of images, videos, emails, social network profiles and more that were flagged as possibly criminal content.
“You have dreams about these kids, the recall that comes to your mind, you can see them. I had to go on an anti-anxiety medication — your anxiety increases,” she said. While on the phone call, Cindy told me she could still see the images of child victims being raped with vivid detail — something that always happens when questions of her previous career are inevitably brought up.
She paused. “The worst thing,” she said, “is you would watch the kids age through the abuse.”
I don’t know how these men and women do it without losing their minds or wanting to join a vigilante group. I really don’t. God help them.