Cultural Consequences Of Childhood Sexual Abuse

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Childhood sexual abuse
After working in Child Welfare for over a decade, sexual abuse of a child is still the most traumatic abuse that I have ever encountered. This abuse not only affects the victims psychological and mental states, but may also affect their surroundings to include, community, family and friends. Childhood sexual abuse includes engaging in sexual activities with children 0- 17 years of age by way of fondling, touching in a sexual manner, attempting sexual intercourse (oral, anal or vaginal), and having any type of sexual intercourse with children (Dube et al., 2005). This abuse is a major societal problem that presents an array of difficult decisions for those involved in its investigation and substantiation process (London, Bruck, Wright & Ceci, 2007).
Demographics and Complexity
“Although geographical area and culture are not isomorphic, differences in cultural beliefs and values might be underlining mechanism affecting the estimated prevalence of CAS across countries and continents” (Stoltenborg, Ijzendoorn, Euser & Bakermans-Kranenburg, 2011, p.80). Research shows a higher prevalence in CSA among girls than boys as well as significant cultural differences with regards to willingness in disclosing (Stoltenborg, Ijzendoorn, Euser & Bakermans-Kranenburg, 2011). Recent data from research illustrates that, to greater or lesser extent, child abuse is a historical constant that occurs in all cultures and societies and at any social level. Therefore, CAS is not isolated, sporadic or distant reality, but rather, a complex and universal problem, which results from the interaction of individual family, social and cultural factors (Pereda, Guilers, Frons & Gomez-Benito, 2009).
“Complex trauma refers to a type of trauma that occurs repeatedly and cumulatively, usually over a period of time and within specific relationships and context” (Courtois, 2008, p. 86). Childhood sexual abuse maybe seen as a complex trauma, as exposure may results in a loss of core capacities for self-regulation and interpersonal relatedness (Cook et al., 2005). Comprehensive review of literature on complex trauma suggests seven primary domains of impairment observed in children who exposed to CSA: attachment, biology,
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