Effects of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Women's Sexuality

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Colangelo, J. J., & Keefe-Cooperman, K. (2012). Understanding the Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Women's Sexuality. Journal Of Mental Health Counseling, 34(1), 14-37.

The purpose of this study was to show how childhood sexual abuse (CSA) victims often are faced with negative psychological and emotional consequences which have profound effects on their lives, as well as their sexuality. The intent of the authors was to show the occurrence of CSA among different women populations, and how it negatively affects them for the rest of their lives. The authors also discuss different suggestions for counselors dealing with these CSA victims, and how they must have a vast understanding of how these women compromise their sex lives because of the trauma. The authors state at the beginning of the article that “the relationship between child sexual abuse and adult sexual functioning is well-established.”(pg 14) So, the author’s intent with this article was to not only provide additional information regarding CSA victims and how that negatively impacts their lives, but provide insight for counselors who are treating these women. The authors explain the different approaches that counselors must practice, and how these can help the CSA victims. The authors’ intentions were not to do a study, but to help people better understand the issue. Although they pulled different statistics from various articles and books explaining how CSA victims are negatively affected through their sexuality, they provided the readers with a specific example, a case study. The case study addresses the issue by giving an example of a girl named Marie. She was sexually abused as a young girl, but successfully received treatment and counseling, which helped her deal with her CSA issues. After a few years, she found her significant other. The problem was, though, she started experiencing “intense fear of intimacy, and distressing memories re-emerged.” (pg. 24) The authors go onto...
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