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The Effects And Outcome Of Child Sexual Abuse

1144 words - 5 pages

Child sexual abuse (CSA) is the act of engaging a child in unwanted sexual behavior and activities such as rape, incest, molestation, prostitution, and other forms of sexual exploitation (as cited by Goodyear-Brown, Fath, &Myers, 2012, p. 4; McGarth, Nilsen, and Kerly, 2011, p. 485). From the efforts for child protective movement in the 1800s to the feminist anti-rape movement a 100 years later in the 1970s that brought to light CSA as a crime against women (Whitter, 2009, p. 7), this type of abuse has been an ongoing issue that has constantly been in and out of sight of the public spectrum of social problems. It is an abuse that children throughout history have been subjected and ...view middle of the document...

281). O’Leary et al. goes further to explain that a possible factor of mental health symptoms in CSA victim is linked to disclose of the abuse. The twenty-seven percent who did revealed their abuse to someone felt betrayed when that someone told without their permission and had more mental health problems partly due to the manner and reaction of others when victims revealed the abuse (O’Leary et al., 2010, p.281). This data reveals mental health a major negative effect of CSA, but also gives us domains in which we can examine more closely such disclosure to prevent more damage by perhaps training children, families, and institutions how to properly react and see CSA.
With the feeling of rejection from those who they disclose the abuse or the unnoticed feeling of those who never told, many disorders are bound to lead to devastating outcomes. According to many studies, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression are major effects of CSA (as cited by Goodyear-Brown, Fath, & Myers, 2012, p.15-19; as cited by Lee & Tolman, 2006, p. 84; Ullman, Najdowski, & Filipas, 2009, p. 375). In Ullman et al. (2009), CSA was a major factor that predicts PTSD which increases the chance of adult sexual assault (ASA) and re-victimization as adults with fifty-four percent of those who sexually assaulted as adults also had CSA history and sixty percent fit the criteria for having PTSD (p. 375). O’Leary et al. also saw such trend with 96 participants reported to ASA ( O’Leary et al., 2010, p.279). Left to cope with CSA, individuals enlist in maladaptive behaviors as a coping mechanism. Substance abuse and suicide attempts are major behaviors and action seen throughout the literature examined (as cited by Goodyear-Brown, Fath, & Myers, 2012, p.15-19; Fergusson et al., 2012, p. 665; as cited in O’Leary et al., 2010, p. 276).
Through the many studies we found that CSA is also linked to low socioeconomic status and unemployment in adulthood. Lee and Tolman (2006) studied female welfare recipients who had serious work barriers and they argued that CSA is associated with lack of employment outcomes due to the mental and physical affects left through the abuse (p. 83). They found that over one-third (36%) of the participants had history of CSA and had low educational levels ( Lee & Tolman, 2006, p. 85). O’Leary et al. also found...

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