Friday, 25 May 2018


Child molestation is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual stimulation. This form of abuse can be conducted by either a man or a woman. Generally men or adolescent boys will abuse boys or girls whereas women general sexually abuse boys.                                          

Forms of child sexual abuse include engaging in sexual activities with a child or by other means such as indecent exposure of the genitals, female nipples, etc., child grooming for sexual activity with the molester  or using a child to produce child pornography of either sex. All of these forms of abuse are against the law in all Westernized nations.

Child sexual abuse can occur in a variety of settings, including home, school, or work such as in places where child labor is common, or in forests.  Child marriage is one of the main forms of child sexual abuse. UNICEF has stated that child marriage represents perhaps the most prevalent form of sexual abuse and exploitation of girls. This is a practice that is common in the  Middle East.

Generally the forms of sexual abuse include oral, vaginal, and anal sex and/or mutual masturbation with either underage girls or boys. In Canada, these forms of sexual activity are against the law if they are done with a child under the age of sixteen.

The global prevalence of child sexual abuse has been estimated at 19.7% against females and 7.9% against males. Most sexual abuse offenders are acquainted with their victims; approximately 30% are relatives of the child, most often brothers, fathers, step fathers, uncles, rarely grandparents or cousins.  Around 60% are other acquaintances, such as friends of the family, babysitters, neighbors and strangers who are approximately 10% of child sexual abuse cases. Most child sexual abuse is committed by men. Studies on female child molesters show that women commit 14% to 40% of offenses reported against boys and 6% of offenses reported against girls.

One tends to picture child molesters as dirty old men hanging around parks but that is not necessarily so. Child molesters comprise of men of many professions and of many ages.

The word pedophile is commonly applied indiscriminately to anyone who sexually abuses a child, but child sexual offenders are not pedophiles unless they have a strong sexual interest in prepubescent children.  Under the law, child sexual abuse is often used as an umbrella term describing criminal and civil offenses in which an adult engages in sexual activity with a minor or exploits a minor for the purpose of sexual gratification. The American Psychological Association states that "children cannot consent to sexual activity with adults and condemns any such action by an adult: "An adult who engages in sexual activity with a child is performing a criminal and immoral act which never can be considered normal or socially acceptable behavior. 

In Canada, anyone who is convicted of child sexual molestation will not receive a pardon and as such, the conviction will remain on his or her criminal record until that person dies. That record is available to any organization if such a person applies to work with children in that organization.  

Child sexual abuse can result in both short-term and long-term harm, including psychopathology in later life.[11][23] Indicators and effects include  depressionanxiety, eating disorders, poor  esteemsomatization, sleep disturbances, and diss0ciative anxiety disorders  including post-traumatic stress  disorder. While children may exhibit regressive behaviours such as thumb sucking or bedwetting, the strongest indicator of sexual abuse is sexual acting out and inappropriate sexual knowledge and interest.[30][31] Victims may withdraw from school and social activities[30] and exhibit various learning and behavioural problems which also includes cruelty to animals,  attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), conduct disorder and  oppositional defiant disorder (ODD). Teenage pregnancy and risky sexual behaviors may appear in adolescence. Child sexual abuse victims report almost four times as many incidences of self-inflicted harm.

Studies have found that 51% to 79% of sexually abused children exhibit psychological symptoms. The risk of harm is greater if the abuser is a relative, if the abuse involves intercourse or attempted intercourse, or if threats or force are used. The level of harm may also be affected by various factors such as penetration, duration and frequency of abuse, and use of force. The social stigma of child sexual abuse may compound the psychological harm to children, and adverse outcomes are less likely for abused children who have supportive family environments.

Child abuse, including sexual abuse, especially chronic abuse starting at early ages, has been found to be related to the development of high levels of dissociative symptoms, which includes amnesia for abuse memories.

 When severe sexual abuse involving penetration, several perpetrators, lasting more than one year had occurred, dissociative symptoms were even more prominent. Recent research showed that females with high exposure to child sexual abuse (CSA) suffer PTSD symptoms that are associated with poor social functioning, which is also supported by prior research studies. The feeling of being “cut-off” from peers and “emotional numbness” are both results of CSA and highly inhibit proper social functioning. Furthermore, PTSD is associated with higher risk of substance abuse as a result of the “self-medication hypothesis” and the “high-risk and susceptibility hypothesis." Prolonged exposure therapy (PE) was found to decrease PTSD and depressive symptoms in female methadone survivors.

Depending on the age and size of the child, and the degree of force used, child sexual abuse may cause internal lacerations and bleeding. In severe cases, damage to internal organs may occur, which, in some cases, may cause death to the victim of the sexual abuse.

One in five women and one in thirteen men reported having been sexually abused as a child world-wide. I was one of them.

When I was eleven years of age, I was anal raped twice by my own father. He then deserted our family.  My mother subsequently sent me to live with the former head of a private residential  school in North Vancouver. I will quote from volume Two of my Memoirs–Whistling in the Face of Robbers beginning on page 305.

Much to my horror, soon after I arrived at the retired principal's home, I discovered that the man I was sent to live with was a pedophile. He sexually molested the four of us boys (ages 10 to 12) living with him by coming into each of our rooms after we went to bed. In his own bedroom, there were many black and white photos on his walls of naked boys who had lived with him earlier.
Several times he took several of us to his various friends’ houses where on the average, five or six men of a similar mind as Bates would examine our naked bodies, albeit they never touched us. I was extremely embarrassed all the time these men stared at my naked body up close. Bates took us there on the ridiculous pretext that he was showing the men our veins throughout the various areas of our bodies. While the men were staring at our naked bodies, I closed my eyes and began day dreaming that I was playing the piano accompanied by a symphony orchestra,                     

One day, another boy and I ran away from Bate's home and we were hiding part way up the mountain in the forest of Grouse Mountain 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) behind Bate's house begging for food from hikers but we were found the next day by the police and brought back to Bates’ home to endure more of this man's nightly ritual of grasping our genitals and digitally probing into our anuses. I was too embarrassed to tell the police or anyone else and the four of us boys didn't discuss with each other our individual sufferings although we knew that each of us was being sexually abused by Bates because of the crying we could hear emanating from each other's rooms. There was no point pretending that I was asleep because it didn't matter to him since he would molest me whether or not I was asleep or awake and it was generally impossible to go to sleep in any case until he finished with me as the suspense of waiting for him to enter my room was so intense—it kept me awake.
The Children's Aid and then my mother learned what Bates was doing to us. Despite their knowledge, we remained in Bate’s care for another week before we were sent to other group homes to live in. unquote  

Alas, I was one of the many billions of children in the past who were sexually molested when we were young. Even in this century, millions of children have been and probably still are being sexually molested by child molesters.    

I hope you have found this article informative.

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