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NCJ Number: 51380 Find in a Library
Title: SEXUAL ABUSE OF CHILDREN (FROM VICTIMIZATION OF WOMEN 1978, BY J R CHAPMAN AND MARGARET GATES - SEE NCJ-51377)
Author(s): K MACFARLANE
Corporate Author: Sage Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 29
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE DYNAMICS OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE, THE SHORT TERM AND LONG TERM EFFECTS ON BOTH VICTIM AND FAMILY, AND THE FURTHER TRAUMA INFLICTED BY MISGUIDED 'HELPING' SERVICES ARE EXPLORED.
Abstract: CONTRARY TO POPULAR BELIEF, MOST CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE IS COMMITTED BY A FATHER, UNCLE, OR CLOSE FAMILY FRIEND. THE DYNAMICS OF VARIOUS FAMILY SITUATIONS LEADING TO INCEST OR SEXUAL ABUSE BY A CLOSE MALE FRIEND ARE EXAMINED. THE ROLE OF THE MOTHER AS AN 'ACTIVE NONPARTICIPANT' IS EXPLORED AND THE PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECTS ON THE CHILD ARE EXAMINED. IT IS FOUND THAT SUCH ABUSE IS A PSYCHOLOGICAL 'TIME BOMB,' ITS AFTEREFFECTS OFTEN NOT BECOMING VISIBLE FOR YEARS. VARIOUS STUDIES HAVE ESTIMATED THAT AS MANY AS 44 PERCENT OF FEMALE DRUG ADDICTS AND 30 PERCENT OF PROSTITUTES HAD BEEN SEXUALLY ABUSED AS CHILDREN. POOR PSYCHOLOGICAL ADJUSTMENT SEEMS TO BE A COMMON AFTER EFFECT. THE HELPING AGENCIES OFTEN COMPOUND THE PROBLEM BY REACTING IN INAPPROPRIATE WAYS--BLAMING THE CHILD FOR THE INCIDENT, REMOVING THE FATHER FROM THE HOME AND THUS REMOVING THE FAMILY'S SOURCE OF SUPPORT, TREATING THE FAMILY MEMBERS WITH INSENSITIVITY. OFTEN THE CHILD FINDS HERSELF SUBJECT TO THE SAME INTENSIVE QUESTIONING AND INSENSITIVE HANDLING EXPERIENCED BY ADULT WOMEN RAPE VICTIMS. SINCE THE CHILD'S PSYCHOLOGICAL DEFENSES ARE WEAK AND UNFORMED, THE DAMAGE IS EVEN GREATER. OFTEN THE FAMILY IS TORN AND THE CHILD WHO IS PUT ON THE WITNESS STAND TO ACCUSE A HUSBAND OR LOVER MAY BE IN REAL PHYSICAL DANGER UPON RETURN HOME. RECOMMENDATIONS ARE MADE FOR CHANGES IN CRIMINAL LAW, FOR CHANGES IN THE HANDLING OF INCEST CASES, FOR GREATER UNDERSTANDING OF THE DYNAMICS OF CHILD ABUSE, AND FOR CHANGES IN THE PROCEDURES FOLLOWED BY THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN HANDLING CHILD ABUSE CASES. A BIBLIOGRAPHY IS APPENDED. (GLR)
Index Term(s): Child abuse; Incest; Psychology; Reform; Sexual assault; Social workers
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=51380

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