A review of the long-term effects of child sexual abuse. Child Abuse & Neglect, 16, 101-118

Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Child Abuse & Neglect (Impact Factor: 2.47). 02/1992; 16(1):101-18. DOI: 10.1016/0145-2134(92)90011-F
Source: PubMed


The existing literature on the long-term sequelae of child sexual abuse is reviewed. The evidence suggests that sexual abuse is an important problem with serious long-term sequelae; but the specific effects of sexual abuse, independent of force, threat of force, or such family variables as parental psychopathology, are still to be clarified. Adult women with a history of childhood sexual abuse show greater evidence of sexual disturbance or dysfunction, homosexual experiences in adolescence or adulthood, depression, and are more likely than nonabused women to be revictimized. Anxiety, fear, and suicidal ideas and behavior have also been associated with a history of childhood sexual abuse but force and threat of force may be a necessary concomitant. As yet, there is insufficient evidence to confirm a relation between a history of childhood sexual abuse and a postsexual abuse syndrome and multiple or borderline personality disorder. Male victims of child sexual abuse show disturbed adult sexual functioning. The relation between age of onset of abuse and outcome is still equivocal. Greater long-term harm is associated with abuse involving a father or stepfather and abuse involving penetration. Longer duration is associated with greater impact, and the use of force or threat of force is associated with greater harm.

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    • "Consistent findings indicate that the experience of CSA contributes to significant and long-lasting psychological problems (Beitchman et al., 1992;Browne & Finkelhor, 1986). Despite consistent findings highlighting the deleterious future consequences of CSA, the extant sexual abuse literature also indicates that a majority of CSA victims do not develop future sexual behavior problems (Hershkowitz, 2014). "
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    ABSTRACT: Most studies on the mental health consequences of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) focus predominantly on CSA survivors who do not commit sexual offenses. The current study examined the effects of CSA on 498 male adolescents adjudicated for sexual offenses who represent the small portion of CSA survivors who engage in sexual offenses. The prevalence of internalizing symptoms, parental attachment difficulties, specific sexual offending behaviors, and risk for sexually offending were compared among participants with and without a history of CSA. Results indicated that participants with a history of CSA were more likely to be diagnosed with major depression and posttraumatic stress disorder than those who did not report a history of CSA. A history of CSA was also positively correlated with risk for sexually offending and with specific offense patterns and consensual sexual behaviors. No significant differences emerged on parental attachment difficulties. These results highlight that adolescents adjudicated for sexual offenses with a history of CSA present with differences in sexual and psychological functioning as well as markedly different offending patterns when compared with those without a CSA history. Clinical implications and future directions are discussed.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2016 · Sexual Abuse A Journal of Research and Treatment
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    • "k of negative outcomes ) , the severity of the abuse ( where we expected victims who experienced genital touching and penetration , respec - tively , to be at increased risk of negative outcomes ) and repeated abuse ( where we expected victims who suffered repeated sexual abuse to be at greater risk of negative out - comes ) ( see , for instance , Beitchman et al . 1992 ) ."
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    ABSTRACT: This study aimed to examine the association between different characteristics of sexual abuse and adverse family outcomes in later life. Through archived court files, a large sample of Dutch men and women who have been sexually abused as a child could be identified. Outcome variables were assessed 33 years after the abuse, when the victims were 44 years of age on average. Being abused by a nuclear family member was associated with teen pregnancies, young marriage, and divorce. Younger ages at time of abuse were related to decreased marriage rates. Penetration, violence, and repeated victimization were not related to adverse outcomes. We found that these effects were not the same for males and females. Furthermore, compared to the average Dutch population, CSA victims experienced more divorce, and female CSA victims were more often childless, had more children, and more often were teenage parents.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2015
    • "In the longer term, the support from the non-offending parent has not only been found to reduce the pernicious sequelae of childhood sexual assault (Barker-Collo and Read, 2003; Elliot and Carnes, 2001; Everson et al., 1989; Spaccarelli, 1994; Tyler, 2002; Whiffen and MacIntosh, 2005), but there are also research findings suggesting that this is exacerbated where support is not forthcoming from this parent (Adams-Tucker, 1982; Beitchman et al., 1992; Guelzow et al., 2002; Morrison and Clavenna-Valleroy, 1998). Finally, where the case leads to a prosecution and the child is required to stand as a witness, the support of the nonoffending parent appears to ameliorate the damaging effects of giving testimony (e.g. "
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    ABSTRACT: This report is presents the protocol and preliminary findings from an outcome evaluation study of the Hampshire and Thames Valley Circles’ Non-Offending Partner Programme. The aims of the programme are to inform, empower and support the non-offending partner of a person who has been convicted of a sexual offence against a child, and to assess the risk posed to, and the non-offending partner’s ability to protect, his/her child(ren). The data presented here relates the findings from the fourteen partners who both completed the programme and the psychometric measures related to the evaluation for the period between February 2012 and August 2014
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Probation Journal
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