THE LONG-TERM EFFECTS OF
CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE
UNIVERSITY OF WEST LONDON
BSc (Hons) SOCIAL WORK
Childhood sexual abuse is a serious concern that has been associated with long term effects amongst survivors. Using secondary data, this qualitative piece of research explores the long term effects of child sexual abuse in later adult life. The purpose for this study is to create awareness to professionals that sexual abuse effects continue long after the abuse stops thus, sufficient knowledge on the characteristics of the abuse. The long term effects focuses on three developmental domains; emotional social and behavioural. The emotional aspect looks at depression, feelings of guilt and anxiety. The social aspect focuses on relationships and intimacy, and the behavioural aspect will discuss issues self-destructive behaviours. Results from the research highlight that the long term effects are not consistent across the three domains. Thus, child sexual abuse is viewed as a risk factor, as opposed to an actual cause to the effects. Nevertheless, knowledge on the long term effects is imperative, to provide appropriate support and services. Research recommendations are discussed.
The writing of this dissertation has been one of my biggest challenges thus far; as emotional as it was, I am pleased that I decided to follow through with my chosen topic. I have learnt so much in the process, both academically and personally. This dissertation would not have been possible without the support and guidance of several individuals. First and foremost, I would like to give thanks to God for providing me with the strength and courage to undergo such a huge challenge. I would like to say a special thank you to my beloved family and friends who have given me their support and understanding over the past five months. I am really grateful to be blessed with such wonderful people, may God bless you all. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to my dissertation tutor, Tricia Ayre. Thank you for your invaluable assistance from the beginning to the end. Your support has meant a lot and kept me on the right tracks. Thanks. Thanks to my manager and colleagues at my final year placement who also showed me a generous amount of support. Thank you all…. I’VE DONE IT!
TABLE OF CONTENTS
CHAPTER| TITLE | PAGES| 1| INTRODUCTION| 5 - 9|
2| METHODOLOGY | 10 -12|
3| LITERTATURE REVIEW3.1 Factors contributing to the impact of child sexual abuse 3.2 Reasons for limited research 3.3 Emotional3.4 Emotional Discussion3.5 Social3.6 Social Discussion3.7 Behavioural3.8 Behavioural Discussion| 13 – 25 13-14 15-16 16-18 18-19 19-20 20-21 21-25 25| 4| DISCUSSION| 26-27|
5| CONCLUSIONS/RECOMMENDATIONS | 28-29|
| REFERENCE LIST| 30-41|
The literary based dissertation will explore and critically examine the current literature on the long term effects of child sexual abuse (CSA), focusing on three specific areas; Social, Emotional and Behavioural. Childhood sexual abuse has become a subject of great community concern. According to NSPCC statistics, Attewill (2012) reported in 2011 a child was sexually attacked every twenty minutes, with more than 60 child sex offences reported to the police each day and 23,097 reports for the year. A great effort has been put into enabling children to disclose their abuse, interventions and laws to protect survivors from such abuse. However, how the abuse effects the survivors has received...