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IT’S TIME TO STOP SAYING:

“IT’S ONLY MEN, AND THE OCCASIONAL FEMALE TEACHER”

“IT’S TOO PAINFUL TO EVEN THINK ABOUT”

“DOES IT REALLY HAPPEN THAT OFTEN?”

“THIS COULDN’T HAPPEN IN OUR FAMILY”

“MY CHILD WOULD TELL ME”

“I’VE TAUGHT MY KIDS ABOUT STRANGERS”

 

Does any of the above coincide with your opinion on child sexual abuse?
If the answer is yes, then you are actually putting your kids at greater risk to become a victim.
​The Truth? What we hear in the media about child sexual abuse is only the tip of the iceberg.

If you observe a child sexual abuse incident, dial 9-1-1 immediately. If you suspect child sexual abuse (but have not observed anything like catching the perpetrator in the act, receiving an outcry from/by the victim or suspicious bruises, etc.), you should report your suspicions to Child Protective Services (CPS) at 1-800-252-5400. DPD’s Child Abuse Squad will follow-up on these reports.

THE REALITY OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE:

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{CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE IS NOT JUST PHYSICAL}

It affects the child’s:
– Sense of Trust & Security
​- Self Worth & Confidence
​- Ability to form meaningful and bonding relationships
​- Sense of control over their body & life choices
​- Ability to identify healthy sexual behavior



WHAT IS CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE EXACTLY?
ALL SEXUAL ACTIVITY BETWEEN AN ADULT AND A CHILD IS SEXUAL ABUSE.

​This is information directly from Stop It Now’s website (At the bottom of this page there is a link to Child Welfare’s site which goes into much greater detail)

Sexual abuse between children is often defined as when there is a significant age difference (usually 3 or more years) between the children, or if the children are very different developmentally or size-wise.

​Sexual abuse does not have to involve penetration, force, pain, or even touching. If an adult engages in any sexual behavior (looking, showing, or touching) with a child to meet the adult’s interest or sexual needs, it is sexual abuse.

​Child sexual abuse includes harmful contact and non-contact behaviors

​ABUSIVE PHYSICAL CONTACT OR TOUCHING

​* Touching a child’s genitals or private parts for sexual purposes
* Making a child touch someone else’s genitals or play sexual games
* Putting objects or body parts (like fingers, tongue or penis) inside the vagina, in the mouth or in the anus of a child for sexual purposes

NON-CONTACT SEXUAL ABUSE INCLUDES:

* Showing pornography to a child
* Deliberately exposing one’s genitals to a child
* Photographing a child in sexual poses
* Encouraging a child to watch or hear sexual acts
* Inappropriately watching a child undress or use the bathroom

SEXUALLY ABUSIVE IMAGES OF CHILDREN AND THE INTERNET

​As well as the activities described above, there is also the serious and growing problem of people making and downloading sexual images of children on the Internet. To view sexually abusive images of children is to participate in the abuse of a child, and may cause someone to consider sexual interactions with children as acceptable.To visit the US Department of Child Welfare’s page regarding the definition and scope of child sexual abuse, click here.

HOW OFTEN ARE CHILDREN SEXUALLY ABUSED?

CSA IMAGE 8

1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before the age of 18.

The Federal Center for Disease Control (CDC) collaborated with Kaiser Permanente, the nation’s largest HMO, to perform the Adverse Childhood Experience study (ACE). It involved physical examination of over 1 7,000 adult participants and surveys from each participant to determine what correlation may exist between childhood maltreatment and family dysfunction, and adult health and behaviors. From those surveys, 16% of male participants and 25% of female participants acknowledged that they had experienced sexual abuse as children. Specifically, defined in the survey:

“An adult or person at least 5 years older ever touched or fondled you in a sexual way, or had you touch their body in a sexual way, or attempted oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse with you or actually had oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse with you.” (CDC)

​This supported previous research that indicated between 20-33% of women had experienced sexual abuse as children.

Nearly 3/4 of victims will not tell anyone for at least a year. Nearly half of victims will wait at least 5 years before telling. Some never tell.

90% OF CASES ARE NEVER REPORTED


Which means the majority of sexual offenders are walking the streets free and unknown to society. Why? It often takes a long time for the child to tell someone, and even though they may disclose to a friend, therapist, or family member – it’s not being reported. The child & family may not want to face the difficulty of having to go through the investigation & possibly a trial.

The person may not believe the child. And often, since it takes so long for children to finally tell
– many are often adults by the time they disclose t heir abuse. Furthermore, when an abuser is a family member, or friend  or another minor, the family may decide to not report to the police and attempt to deal with the abuse on their own, or they may just be relieved that the child is no longer being abused and not want to report. Even if they do report, cases involving family member are “screened out” by the police to be handled by the Department of Family Services, Child Protective Services, or other non-law enforcement agency that handles domestic issues. CPS must first substantiate the abuse before allowing the case to be handed over to the police for an arrest and possible prosecution.

WHO ARE THE ABUSERS?

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​*​ 30-40% are immediate or extended family members of the victim

* As many as 50% of abusers know their victims and are in a position of trust with the victim and/or family.

* As many as 40% of abusers are larger or older children – siblings, cousins, friends, neighbors, community members

* A US Department of Education report in 2004 indicated that 7% or 3.5 million 8th to 11th graders reported having physical
sexual contact from an adult in their school.

​* Only 10% are estimated to be strangers

THE VICTIMS
CSA-Girl Sitting Against Wall Withdrawn

​* The average age for reported sexual abuse is 9 years. That is the average – meaning there are a considerable number of victims under the age of 9 as well as over this age.

* 50% of all victims of forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object, and forcible fondling are under age twelve.

​* 20% of children will receive a sexual solicitation via the internet.

* Less than 1% of abuse alleged by a child is false.

THE COST VICTIMS PAY
Child-Sexual-Abuse

​Children that are sexually abused are at a higher risk to suffer from: low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, psychotic and schizophrenic syndromes, conduct/anti-social personality disorder, drug and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, obesity, failure to complete high school, attempted suicide or suicide, increased instability in relationships, more sexual partners, an increased risk of sexual problems and greater negativity towards partners, and prostitution.

Overwhelmingly, however, the findings of other research suggest that victims of child sexual abuse are generally at an increased risk of re-victimization. More specifically, women who have a history of child sexual abuse are at least twice as likely to experience adult sexual victimization.

MALE VICTIMS VS FEMALE VICTIMS
Male CSA Victim

​Recent research also indicates that men are less likely to disclose child sexual abuse during childhood compared with women and to make fewer and more selective disclosures.
A reported 64% of women and 26% of men have told someone about the abuse when they were children. Men take significantly longer than women to discuss it with someone, reportedly it is not uncommon for men to take in excess of 20 years to talk about their experiences.

Cultural images of how “real men” should think, feel and act can create: Powerful barriers to male victim/survivors of child sexual abuse disclosing their experiences to others, accepting their experience as one that may have had a formative influence on their lives, and healing from the trauma of the abuse.

This means that many in society have difficulty fully acknowledging and accepting the reality of the sexual abuse of males during childhood/adolescence, and the trauma it can inflict.

Other researchers have similarly suggested that under-reporting of sexual abuse by boys may be linked to “community assumptions that have often labelled them as future perpetrators: as homosexual; or, because they fear being treated as social outcasts, liars, or as emotionally weak.”

WHAT WE ALL FEAR. WHAT WE DON’T KNOW

csa stats

* Children are being abused and aren’t telling. They are too afraid, ashamed, confused, and under the control of their abusers. They do not have a voice.

* We all most likely know multiple people who have been sexually abused as children. In fact, we most likely know a child right now that was, is, or will be sexually abused.

* The real damage of sexual abuse is not what has happened to their bodies, but what has happened to their minds, their hearts – affecting their ability to live a fulfilling productive life.

​WHAT TOO MANY WANT TO DENY

People Ignoring CSA

The people that are abusing children are the very people we love. The people we enjoy spending time with. The people we trust to care for our children. 

We’re not afraid to say it – incest is alive and thriving in today’s modern world. Parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousin etc.

This is not a “backwoods” issue – incest and sexual predators permeate every demographic possible. Every race, every class, every geographic region, people in cities, suburbs, rural areas – this is a world issue. 

It is our own fear to face this reality, to ignore it, to not talk about it – that is putting children at risk to become a victim of sexual abuse. 

WHY DO I NEED TO KNOW?

Why do I need to know

People who don’t have kids might wonder why they need to know about child sexual abuse. Well, first off – you never know when you may witness something that puts a child at risk.

There is even an organization –  Truckers Against Trafficking because there are good truck drivers that CARE about what is going on out there – what is happening at our local truck stops!

And if nothing else, when we are ALL educated about the reality of injustice in this world, when someone says something ignorant or naive – we can counter them with the TRUTH.