False Memories: The Origins of False Allegations

Topics: Rape, African American, Stereotype Pages: 11 (1871 words) Published: May 1, 2014

False Memories
The Origins of False Allegations

Bilqis Sanchez
Introduction to Psychology, PSY-101-10
Professor Dunovant
November 26, 2013
For many years now, there has been numerous victims of sexual abuse, both male and female: adults, teens, and children. However, some of these allegations might not have, and have never been true. Some may have accused innocent people of sexual crimes that they have not committed on purpose, while others are simply disturbed mentally and resort to fabricating such allegations. Others may attempt to make these false allegations against innocent people simply to get that person into trouble; or because of prejudice and stereotyping. Those who do this knowingly, do not know the effects of it, and so not only may it harm them, but the other person as well.  Most of these false memories begin with faux therapists who input such memories into one’s head.

False Memories
The Origins of false Allegations
Where do these false analogies initiate? The history of the interface between the psychologies of childhood memories was a notorious one. (Bjorklund, 2000) Sometimes, many form repressed memories because they feel anxiety. Anxiety can perform a big role in situations of false memories, because some may begin to feel as if though they were harmed for the simplest of reasons. Anxiety causes one to feel worried, and stressed. Once the anxiety begins, it then extends into rumors. For instance; a parent may begin to feel as though his/her child had been sexually abused for no potential reasoning.

The parent may believe that while their child was away with their mother/father that something could have happened. Then the questioning begins: such as, “has anyone ever touched you in your private places? And whether you have coerced into touching someone else’s private places?” (Campbell, 1998) If this such entity has never happened, then the child will begin to feel confused because he/ she does not may be able to understand why the parent is asking such questions.

These are the parents forming repressed memories, merely because they felt as if something happened. “Repressed memories may reappear spontaneously or through flashbacks stimulated by a triggered event.” (Monica, 1994) A situation such as sexual abuse could have happened to the parent, and so they suppose that it can happen to the child as well. “When anxious parents and concerned others gravitate into loyal alliances, the anxiety of the parents is no longer confined within each of them.” (Campbell, 1998)

Why does False Allegations happen?
Many people may construct repressed memories to get others into trouble, sort of say. Children in particular, have a history of doing so because either they were told to or because they felt it was an easier way to get them past their difficulties in both the past and present. For example, a parent may have heard that his/her daughter had begun to have sexual intercourse, and so he/she has decided to confront their daughter on the situation. However, in order for the daughter avoid getting into any trouble, she cries rape.

Now, she believes that the situation will be left as it is, but little does she know that her mother/father has decided to file a sexual report against the individual who had supposedly “raped her.” From then on, the situation is taken to court, and she has now involved others. She ruined her alleged “rapist” reputation and now she is the talk of the town. Although she did not intend for this to happen, she still caused everyone an insurmountable amount of trouble because of her lies to exclude herself from trouble.

This “repressed memory” was not because of trauma that had occurred before or because of a feeling of anxiety, it was meant to get one self out of trouble.  Many people do not know what rape is and what kind of trouble they can get someone into.

Other times, these false allegations may happen...

References: Bjorklund, D. F. (2000). False-Memory Creation in Children and Adults: Theory, Research, and Implications. Mahwah, NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates .
Calof, D. (1998). Child Sexual Abuse and False Memory Syndrome. Amherst, NY : Prometheus Books .
Campbell, T. W. (1998). Smoke and Mirrors: The Devastating Effect of False Sexual Abuse Claims . New York : Insight Books.
Monica, H. L. (1994). The Necessity of Memory Experts for the Defense in Prosecutions For Child Sexual Abused Based on Repressed Memories. American Law Review, 69-75.
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