Analecto

31 de março de 2019

What I learned by reading “Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Child Sexual Abuse”.

Filed under: Saúde e bem-estar — Tags:, , , — Yure @ 21:26

Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Child Sexual Abuse” was written by John N. Briere and Diana M. Elliott. Below, what I learned by reading this text.

  1. Symptoms of child sexual abuse may appear due to circumstances that have manifested after the contact.
  2. It is not always possible to make a causal link between early sexual experience and a negative symptom, which can be caused by other things.
  3. Child sexual abuse is only one problem: other forms of child abuse, such as emotional abuse and physical abuse, can also damage the child’s adult functioning as he or she grows older.
  4. If you say that precocious sexual contact is not always traumatic, you are unlikely to hear someone say “hey, I agree.”
  5. Much of the studies on children’s sexual experiences use clinical or forensic samples, which have limited generalization potential: there may be children out there who have different histories.
  6. In the case of child sexual abuse, not all children respond to abuse in the same way: it is very difficult, if not impossible, to profile the abused child.
  7. There are children who have sexual contacts in childhood and grow up perfectly normal.
  8. This is because sexual contact varies according to frequency and intensity: fondling is one thing and rape is another.
  9. The presence or absence of a particular symptom does not comfirm nor deny the occurrence of sexual abuse.
  10. The purpose of the study is to describe the symptoms commonly attributed to child sexual abuse but without claiming that all sexually abused children will report such symptoms or that such symptoms can not be caused by other conditions.
  11. Some symptoms of early forced or painful intercourse diminish over time, but other symptoms worsen over time.
  12. One of these symptoms is posttraumatic stress.
  13. The chance of a sexually abused child receiving a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress is 48% greater than the chance of a virgin child receiving the same diagnosis.
  14. One of the iconic symptoms of posttraumatic stress are the hallucinations that occur in such a way that it seems like the traumatic event is occurring again, when it is only a particularly intense memory.
  15. In the case of sexual abuse, hallucinations (which can be visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory or even tactile) can be triggered by things that resemble the abuse, such as sexual arousal itself: imagine reliving a traumatic experience whenever you feel horny.
  16. Another manifestation of post-traumatic stress is the occurence intrusive memories.
  17. Nightmares are also common in people with post-traumatic stress disorder.
  18. Another possible effect of child sexual abuse is cognitive distortion: you learn to see the world as a more dangerous place than it really is, for example.
  19. Another form of this distortion is the attempt to justify what happened, which can lead to self-esteem problems (“I was abused because I deserved it”).
  20. Another possible effect is emotional discomfort , which can take the form of depression or anxiety.
  21. The chance of a raped child receiving a diagnosis of depression is four times higher than that of the child who was not raped.
  22. Forcible or painful experiences are disruptive in nature.
  23. They undermine confidence in the justice in the world.
  24. The chance of a raped child receiving a diagnosis of any anxiety-related illness is five times greater than that of the non-raped child.
  25. In the clinical population, adults who were molested as children have difficulties in exercising their sexuality because they have associated sex with intrusion and pain.
  26. This may even prevent the subject from having orgasms during sex.
  27. Not to mention anger, which is also a type of emotional discomfort associated with abuse.
  28. Generally, victims of sexual abuse do not become abusers themselves.
  29. In other cases, the sexual experiences may be shrugged off the child.
  30. Sexually abused people are more likely to develop substance addictions.
  31. Others kill themselves.
  32. Most cases of underage sex, abusive or not, occur among people who know each other, not among strangers, so that the child probably already knew the other child or adult with whom he or she had the experience.
  33. For example, a lot of those experiences are incestuous .
  34. It is important to remember that data on early sexual relationships try to be generalizable and may not coincide with particular experiences.
  35. Quantitative studies do not take individual pathogenic or protective characteristics into account: each one judges and deals with their experiences in a particular way.
  36. Sexual relationships in childhood or adolescence do not cause “syndromes”, that is, there is no guarantee that the subject will develop all the symptoms commonly attributed to this type of incident and it may even be that the subject develops in a perfectly normal way, despite what happened.
  37. A good number of the subjects who suffer from such experiences may even recover on their own.
  38. On the other hand, the person may develop negative symptoms after an asymptomatic period.
  39. When performing a study on early sexual experiences, try looking for symptoms commonly attributed to this type of experience, and if the subject does not present any , he is asymptomatic.
  40. Certain factors increase the chances of negative outcomes: use of force, incest, frequent attacks, multiple subjects involved, age …
  41. Concomitant abuse, of course, makes things worse: imagine being raped at school and being beaten up by your mother when you get home.
  42. Parents’ reactions can cause or aggravate symptoms related to the sexual experience when such experience is revealed, so it is important for the parent to know how to deal with the situation so as not to make things worse for the child.
  43. Make it clear to your child that he can entrust you with any secrets.
  44. The child’s temperament and past experiences affect the way she handles these encounters.
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