Obscene calls or obscene remarks on computer or in notes
Perpetrator masturbates self
Perpetrator has the victim watch others masturbate
Being touched or fondled in sexual areas by another person (whether clothed or naked)
Touching another person’s sexual areas (including masturbating/penetrating another person)
Kissed or held in a sexual manner
Performing or receiving oral sex
Vaginal or anal penetration with object or finger (digit)
Vaginal or anal intercourse
The means, or the manner in which the abuse occurred, can be insidious which is the commonly known as “ grooming ”.
Grooming itself usually has three steps:
Gaining the victim’s trust and confidence to begin the process
Slowly introduce the child to sexual types of touch, language, knowledge and media, so that the child is gradually desensitized to these practices.
Manipulate the child to keep the secret, often tricking or pressuring a child into keeping the sexual abuse a secret by using subtle tactics.
Situations where the abuse is forced may or may not have involved previous grooming
Forces sexual abuse includes
continuing the method of abuse after the child has refused consent
Restraining the child
Physically threatening or submitting the child
Of those who suffer violent attacks, approx 50% are <12yo
The frequency of the abuse can be one-off or intermittent
The more infrequent the abuse, the more difficult it can be to prove.
Damaging no matter how often it occurs
More damaging if others do not validate affect
Or the frequency may be recurrent or ritualistic
For example, it may be that every Tuesday night when the parents go shopping and leave the children at home with babysitter, that the brother finds opportunity to abuse his sister.
Or it may be that every night, after the mother has gone to sleep, that the husband goes into his daughter’s room and abuses her.
Before the age of 12 years old = 1/4 girls & 1/7 boys
approx 5 students are victims in each class of 30 at primary school
Before the age of 18 years old = 1/3 girls & 1/6 boys
approx 7 students are victims in each class of 30 at high school
Children with disabilities are seven (7) times at-risk
Of all child victims
30% will never disclose their abuse to anyone
70% will eventually disclose at some time
75% end up disclosing accidentally
20% who disclose will end up recanting
Of those who report abuse, average age of being abused was 9yo
Approx 34% of sexual abuse occurs before 8yo
ALL children can be at risk - regardless of age, class, family, gender, race or religion
40% were older or bigger children whom the victim knew
50% of the offenders were adolescents
Offender’s relationship to victim
30%-40% of offenders are family members of the victim (sibling, parent, uncle, grandfather, cousin, etc)
50% are friends/acquaintances of the child or family (teacher, neighbour, coaches, babysitter, etc)
Only 10% are abused by a stranger
Most Common Myths
Children who are being abused will always or immediately tell their parents
It is immediately apparent if a child is being abused
Sexual abuse is always forced and violent
Children do not mind the abuse so much or they would not let it go on for so long
Children lie about being sexually abused and even imagine what it's like
The 'stranger' is the danger
It is outside intervention that causes the trauma for children who have been sexually abused
Children will naturally grow out of the effects of sexual abuse or incest
If the child experiences arousal or orgasm during the abuse, then he/she has been a willing participant and enjoyed it
Girls are more traumatized by sexual abuse than boys
If a child is sexually active with his/her peers, then it is "experimenting" and not sexual abuse
Risk Factors & Warning Signs
The handout is a list of warning signs or indicators, NOT PROOF, that a child may have suffered previous or current sexual abuse.
These indicators are in relation to the possible physical, emotional and psychological changes that a child may exhibit.
However, I reiterate that these warning signs are not proof that sexual abuse has taken place, and SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A DIAGNOSIS ; they are merely indicators for people working with young people to use to expand their awareness of sexual abuse.
Aftermath Affect of B.E.I.N.G.
These are just some of the attributes a victim may display after being abused.
This is not ALL the attributes that may be displayed
A victim may display none, one or lots of these attributes
(B.E.I.N.G. stands for Body, Emotions, Intellect, eNvironment, and God)
My story Feel free to interrupt and ask me any questions
How to help?
If you have a friend who has been through sexual abuse, the best advice I can give you to help supporting them is: