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Key Points About Child Sexual Abuse

Key Points About Child Sexual Abuse

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Published by Jane Gilgun
This one-page handout summarizes key issues that are important in the understanding child sexual abuse and its prevention. Many of the points are also applicable to other forms of abuse and neglect. It's way past time that professionals, including clergy, educate themselves about child sexual abuse and other forms of violence. If representatives of value-based institutions spoke collectively about their perspectives on child abuse--based on their professed value systems--the world would change.
This one-page handout summarizes key issues that are important in the understanding child sexual abuse and its prevention. Many of the points are also applicable to other forms of abuse and neglect. It's way past time that professionals, including clergy, educate themselves about child sexual abuse and other forms of violence. If representatives of value-based institutions spoke collectively about their perspectives on child abuse--based on their professed value systems--the world would change.

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Jane Gilgun on Apr 11, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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02/06/2013

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School of Social Work University of Minnesota, Twin CitiesJane F. Gilgun, Ph.D., LICSWSW 3701 Child Abuse & Neglect PreventionSpring 2011Key Ideas About Child Sexual AbuseChildren
y
 
may feel blamed and often are
y
 
may believe they are responsible for family break-up
y
 
c
hildren with strong atta
c
hments typi
c
ally tell²they have trust parents will prote
c
t them
y
 
sometimes they are so frightened of 
c
onsequen
c
es that their sense of trust is over-ridden
y
 
may not tell to avoid hurting or disappointing their parents
y
 
c
hildren who adapt to,
c
ope with, and over 
c
ome the effe
c
ts of 
c
hild sexual abuse have a
cc
ess toresour 
c
es that they a
c
tively and effe
c
tively use
Non-Offending Parents
y
 
c
an be sho
c
ked
y
 
often are willing to give up everything and do whatever it takes to prote
c
t their 
c
hildren
y
 
V
ery few are
c
ompli
c
it, and if they are, they must be held a
cc
ountable while also provided withresour 
c
es that, if they use them, will provide them with the inner resour 
c
es to stand up to abusivepower 
y
 
some
c
an at first deny and then relent
y
 
remember: one young survivor said, ³I don¶t blame people for not believing me. My father is su
c
h ani
c
e guy. I had a hard time believing it myself.´
y
 
must deal with their own issues so they
c
an be psy
c
hologi
c
ally available to
c
hildren
y
 
non-offending parents are key to
c
hildren¶s re
c
overy
Perpetrators
y
 
self-
c
entered, selfish, think only of themselves at the time of the abuse and often afterwards
y
 
think of themselves as lovers,
c
onfidants, res
c
uers,
c
onquerors, avengers, playmates, soul mates
y
 
sexual abuse makes them feel good
y
 
some say sexual abuse represents a failure of atta
c
hment where in se
c
ure atta
c
hment relationshipsindividuals are sensitive and responsive to so
c
ial
c
ues and show
c
ontingent responsiveness; perps arenot like this
y
 
some say
c
hild sexual abuse is a great example of poor exe
c
utive fun
c
tion be
c
ause perps do not think through the
c
onsequen
c
es of their sexually abusive behaviors
y
 
S
exual a
c
ts with
c
hildren is a failure in problem-solving, whi
c
h is an exe
c
utive skill; there arealternatives to sexually abusing
c
hildren when perps feel
c
rappy or angry or whatever 
y
 
perfe
c
t storm of 
c
ultural beliefs about
c
hildren, su
c
h as men¶s alleged strong sexual drive and
c
ulture-based entitlement: almost always emotionally
c
ut off although they do not appear that way
y
 
perps are human beings
y
 
some learn to manage their sexually abusive behaviors toward
c
hildren with a great deal of help
y
 
often have ex
c
ellent exe
c
utive skills in some areas and give the appearan
c
e of having the emotionalopenness and flexibility that are
c
hara
c
teristi
c
of se
c
ure atta
c
hments
Systems
y
 
S
ometimes
c
hild prote
c
tion does not prote
c
t but allows
c
hildren to be in the homes with adjudi
c
atedperpetrators of 
c
hild sexual abuse
y
 
S
ometimes
c
hild prote
c
tion
c
an do nothing to prote
c
t
c
hildren
y
 
C
lergy and other helping professionals may think they know a lot about
c
hild sexual abuse andmany do not
y
 
F
or prevention to o
cc
ur in wide-spread ways, more institutions must express their perspe
c
tives on

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April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. It's a tough topic to talk about, but here are some key points on the issue.
Scribd added this note
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. It's a tough topic to talk about, but here are some key points on the issue.
Jane Gilgun added this note
Thank you. I've developed these key points over many years. I've done my best to be brief and clear. How we treat children says a great deal about us as human beings.
Scribd added this note
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. It's a tough topic to talk about, but here are some key points on the issue.
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