The chart above is one of the few I found that listed the youngest age of sexually assaulted children. I couldn’t find anything younger than six, probably because children younger than that really don’t understand what is happening to them and so they don’t know that anything is wrong or that they should be telling someone what is going on. Therefore, those cases go unreported.
Speaking for myself, I was about 4 or 5 when my grandfather decided to touch me. I wrote about the situation less than two months after starting this blog, when I was asked to write a guest post on the blog Deliberate Donkey. So I wrote about The Aftermath of Abuse. It not only discussed the situation between my grandfather and I, but also on the physical abuse by my father and husband, and how it all ties into a neat little “textbook” bow.
This topic has come to the surface for me again over the last couple of weeks and I’m not sure why. Maybe it is so I can discuss it again, here, once and for all and be done with it.
I don’t think it was something I really dwelled on. I had a good relationship with my grandfather growing up, and although I always remember knowing it happened, I must have, at some point, suppressed it. It would make sense wouldn’t it? Otherwise how would I be able to get along with my grandfather?
Even now, I don’t really have any sort of hate towards him over it. I’m not sure I ever did. Maybe because it only happened a few times or maybe because there was no real physical sexual assault. To add to it, I didn’t know it was wrong. I didn’t know to tell my parents. Back then we didn’t have conversations like today when we continuously remind our children that no one should touch their “private parts” and if anyone tried or asked them to touch theirs to tell us immediately. I think it was just a non-existent discussion in the 1970’s since everyone was just so trusting and carefree back then. Maybe because my parents were young themselves they didn’t know to have that type of conversation with a young child. Who knows.
Thankfully, discussions have changed since then. However, sadly, cases of childhood sexual abuse have not stopped.
Statistics on Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse can occur in or out of the home, and perpetrators can include parents, caregivers, other adults, or other children or youth.
In the United States, approximately 1 out of every 4 girls and 1 out of every 6 boys is sexually abused.
Approximately 60% of sexual abusers are known to the child but are not family members, such as family friends, babysitters, or neighbors.
Approximately 30% of sexual abusers are family members, such as fathers, mothers, brothers, uncles, or cousins.
Child sex abuse includes body contact, such as kissing and oral, anal, or vaginal sex. Sex abuse can also include “flashing” or showing private parts, forcing children to watch pornography, voyeurism (trying to look at a child’s naked body), pressuring children for sex, having sex in front of children, and exploiting children for pornography or prostitution.
Child abusers often do not use physical force but instead “groom” or use manipulative tactics, such as buying gifts, arranging special activities, exposing children to pornography, and roughhousing to keep a child engaged with and often confused about the abuser’s motives.
Behavioral changes are often the first signs of sexual abuse. These can include nervous or aggressive behavior toward adults, early and age-inappropriate sexual provocativeness, alcohol consumption and the use of other drugs. Boys are more likely than girls to act out or behave in aggressive and antisocial ways.
The consequences of child sexual abuse are wide-ranging and varied. They can include:
- chronic depression
- low self-esteem
- sexual dysfunction
- multiple personalities
Fact Source: Random History
Fact Source: Women’s Issues
To read from the beginning… #MyStory starts here.