CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE DEFINITION
It includes any sexual act between an adult and a minor or between two minors when one exerts power over the other. This may include forcing coercing or persuading a child to engage in any type of sexual act as well as non-contact acts such as exhibitionism, exposure to pornography, voyeurism and communication in a sexual manner by phone or internet. This is called – Child Sexual Abuse.
This article is on child sexual abuse and it’s impact and risk of child sexual abuse which I going to describe the signs and symptoms and how to recognize them.
So I’m going to give you some of the most prominent ones and when I work with child abuse these are the things I would be looking up for making assessments and now if your child needs some of these assessments that do not necessarily mean they are being sexually abused but as you go along if they’re quite a few of these even if it’s not sexual abuse it probably causes for concern.
So I would encourage you to get some help some support maybe meeting with counsel or professional or family support worker.
Somebody look it up, don’t just leave things hanging but when there’s childhood sexual abuse there are some very specific things that are triggers run red flag areas we call them red flags to alert us.
So some of these facts and figures are a little bit scary but we need to understand them because it will help you to realize that you’re not alone.
So let’s have a look at some of the tails and I know this is hard reading but bear with me.
Child Sexual Abuse Statistics
NOTE: We update these statistics of child sexual abuse after every year.
According to the latest research:
- 1 out of 4 girls, and;
- 1 out of 6 boys is sexually abused.
- 26% of adult females became a victim.
- About 16% of adult males became the victim of childhood sexual abuse.
- Every day five children died as a result of child abuse in the United States and nearly 700,000 children are abused every year.
- Just in the United States alone, the highest rate of child physical abuse is inflicted on children under the age of 3.
- 90% of child abuse is inflicted by someone who knows the child and in someone that the child trusts.
- Approximately 14% of all men and 36% of all women in prison were abused as a child.
- There is a 42% increased chance of suicidal thoughts during adolescence.
There are more than 42 million survivors of sexual abuse in America.
In the United States, for 1 year, 16% of youngsters near about 15 to 18 had been sexually assaulted.
Across the world, 20% of children have been sexually abused.
In the United States, 16 percent of men and 26 percent of women, have been sexually abused in childhood.
According to the NSPCC, in Britain, 5 percent of children in the UK have been sexually abused but most studies put it at much higher at around 10 percent.
NOTE: Please bear in mind these are only the figures that have been reported. The majority of people do not report their abuse.
I’ve been working with survivors for about seven years and I have never ever had any survivor telling the police and most have not told their family.
So these figures of all the people I’ve worked with wouldn’t show up on the figures. So when we’re looking at these figures this is just the tip of the iceberg.
It’s important to know that one in three girls and one in five boys may become the victim of child sexual abuse before they graduate.
So it’s really important that we get in early and educate them in terms of prevention because we also know that 95 percent of sexual abuse is preventable with education and awareness.
IMPORTANT FACTS OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE
Here are some facts and figures that you need to know!!!
- One of the very first things that I learned about child sexual abuse that surprised me was that it was hardly ever done by a stranger. Now, in my mind, I had always heard of stranger danger and we always think about telling our kids, “don’t talk to strangers.” And don’t get into the car with strangers. And a lot of think well, that’s enough. But, the truth is that if your child is abused, very rarely is it going to be because of some stranger that they talk to. Most of the time it’s going to be because of a family acquaintance. When we say acquaintance what we mean is most likely your child’s friend, maybe your child’s friend’s older brother or cousin, or a neighbor, or a family friend. You’ll be surprised at how often it is a family member like an older brother, or a cousin, or an uncle. So, don’t think just because you know somebody well or just because they’re related to you or just because they’ve been a friend of yours for a while that it’s okay to give them unsupervised access to your kids.
- Number two, the abuser could also be an older child or a more powerful child. As a parent, I didn’t really think about having to be worried or concerned about the children that my children hang out with. But, many times it’s another child that abuses a child. It could be a child that’s been abused before or they are just curious. But, it’s something that we need to warn our children about. Not, only looking out for Adults Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse, but, also for other children that could possibly abuse them.
- The third thing that I learned in the course of just training people about childhood sexual abuse is that very rarely is it somebody that comes across as a weird, creepy, strange person that’s going to be the abuser. These people that abuse children a lot of times are very polished. They are very professional. They know that if they come across as a weirdo or a creep, that you’re not going to give them access to your children. So, most of the time they come across as very nice, very caring. They may even appear to really love children. Don’t think that just because you don’t have a bad feeling in your gut about the particular person that it’s okay for them to have access to your kids.
- The fourth thing is that children very rarely will lie about an allegation. They have very many reasons not to admit it. They might have been threatened not to tell someone. They might feel like they are going to get in trouble themselves. They might really like the person who abused them and they are afraid that they’re going to get that person in trouble. To find out more about why a victim might try to defend their abuser, look up the Stockholm Syndrome. So, no matter the fact, if a child admits to you that they’ve been sexually abused, then you need to take it seriously.
- Now, the fifth thing that I learned about childhood sexual abuse that was surprising to me has to do with single moms. I know that a lot of people in our church are single moms and in our community, there are a lot of single mothers and I know nationwide there are a lot of single moms.
- All sexually abused children have attempted suicide and 43% of thought about it. That’s nearly half 70% of all psychiatric emergency room patients report history. So these are the people who’ve got so desperate they’ve checked themselves into a psych unit or being sectioned.
- Let’s talk about alcohol and drugs, wonderful anesthetics only numb nut pain right down can’t feel a thing excellent while not reeling. It’s just delaying the inevitable plus, it’s adding something else destructive that you have to deal with later. A number of studies have found that adolescents with a history of demonstrated three to fourfold increase in the rates of substance abuse. So that’s something else to recover that from that led you there in the first place.
I know this has been very depressing listening to all these facts and figures and I agree if you have experienced depression and suicide attempts, had mental health problems, drug or alcohol problems being arrested, convicted, being in prison, being promiscuous, being a sex worker, have no education.
Feel-thick, feel good enough, feel worthy.
You are alone and now that you’ve heard all of this you can begin to see that your behavior and patterns and reactions are actually a very normal response, not an abnormal one and this is then leading into the journey into bringing those broken bits of you back together and journey to reprogram your wiring your beliefs and your drives to release that disgust the shame and the pain a journey to feel clean enough or good enough worthy enough lovable and deserving a journey into place where you can move past.
The journey begins with you wanting to move, past the person to heal through understanding awareness counseling and therapy.
What I learned is that if you are a single mom, your child is ten times more likely to be abused.
Now, if you are a single mother and you have a live-in boyfriend that lives with you and you’re not married.
Then that means that your child is twenty times more likely to be abused. Think about why is it so common for families from single-parent homes to be abused.
Well, I think part of the reason is that as a single parent you’re probably having to work may be more than one job trying to make ends meet.
You’re running around a lot more, you’re having to take care of all the responsibilities that are often shared by a two-parent family home.
Somebody comes in and offers, hey, I can help take care of your kids for you a couple of times a week.
And they start to invest in your children and they start to be there for you.
You may think that they are trying to be your friend, but, what they could be doing is trying to groom your children and maybe target your family because they see it much more likely and easier for them to have access to your kids.
All that to say, is if you are a single mother, be very careful with your children.
All of that can be pretty depressing to talk about.
But, we want you and your family to be prepared.
The good news is that the more you know as a parent, the better prepared you can be to protect your children.
I’m going to be doing more articles on this topic and give you more specific steps you can take to watch out for your family.
This is a message that parents everywhere need to know about.
They need to protect their kids as well.
It’s not just something that we can bury our heads in the sand and forget about.
So I hope that’s been helpful for you.
All we need from you is the promotion of this article through your social networks as it may save someone’s child.