The effects of sexual abuse on a child
can be serious and long-lasting.

Some of these signs may not be obvious until the child has become an adult.
Emotional or psychological harm includes:

Extreme anger

Aggressive behavior

Post Traumatic Stress



Substance abuse

Eating disorders

Confusion about identity

Nightmares or trouble sleeping.

Sexual dysfunction

Juvenile delinquency

Self mutilation

Borderline Personality

Physical harm includes:

Injury to the genital area

Painful urination or stomachaches

Sexually transmitted diseases including AIDS.
Talking about the abuse is important.
  The impact on the child depends primarily on the way the family responds to the situation. A child usually believes that she or he is responsible for the assault and the resulting crisis in the family. It is critical that the child receives strong family support and is reassured that the abuse is not the child’s fault.
  Getting the child’s fears and feelings out in the open and dealing with them could do a great deal to reduce the harm the incident may have caused the child.
More information from Prevent Child Abuse America: Sexual Abuse of Children [Website]

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