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#321205 - 02/05/10 09:16 PM Victims Wait Years to Report
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5781
Loc: Lyons, CO USA
Disclosing Sexual Abuse Is Critical
ScienceDaily (Jan. 22, 2010) — Half of sexual abuse survivors wait up to five years before disclosing they were victimized, according to a collaborative study from the Université de Montréal, the Université du Québec à Montréal and the Université de Sherbrooke published in The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry.

"The number of victims who never reveal their secret or who wait many years to do so is very high," says co-author Mireille Cyr, a psychology professor of the Université de Montréal. "This is regrettable because the longer they wait to reveal the abuse, the harder and more enduring the consequences will be."

The research team surveyed 800 Quebec men and women and found 25 percent of respondents never divulged being sexually abused as children. The scientists also found a sharp contrast between genders: 16 percent of women remain quiet about abuse, while 34 percent of men never share their secret.

The investigation found that 22 percent of women and 10 percent of men reported beings survivors of abuse, which ranged from molestation to rape, which is comparable to the findings of previous studies on the topic.

The psychological distress of victims includes anxiety, depression, troubles concentrating and irritability. Certain victims suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, some relive the abuse psychologically while others have dulled emotions or become hyper-vigilant.

The data suggests that victims are more likely to denounce their abuser when he or she is a stranger. Unfortunately, in most cases, serious abuse such as rape is committed by friends or family members. This is true in 85 percent of cases for female victims and 89 percent for male victims.

Professor Isabelle Daigneault, of the Université de Montréal Department of Psychology, conducted a separate study correlating the likelihood of young victims to become adult victims of sexual or physical abuse.

Published in The International Journal of Child Abuse & Neglect, her sample examined 9,170 women and 7,823 men throughout Canada. Her conclusions are startling: female survivors of childhood sexual abuse are three to four times likely to be victims of physical or sexual abuse as adults.

"It's the first time that we combine data on sexual abuse during childhood and eventual relationship problems," says Daigneault.

Male survivors of childhood sexual abuse are three times more likely to be victims of physical abuse as men. However, too few men reported sexual abuse as adults to establish a statistically significant correlation.


Story Source:

Adapted from materials provided by University of Montreal, via EurekAlert!, a service of AAAS.


Journal References:

1.Martine Hébert, Marc Tourigny, Mireille Cyr, Pierre McDuff, Jacques Joly. Prevalence of Childhood Sexual Abuse and Timing of Disclosure in a Representative Sample of Adults From Quebec. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 2009;54(9):631–636
2.Daigneault et al. Men's and women's childhood sexual abuse and victimization in adult partner relationships: A study of risk factors. Child Abuse & Neglect, 2009; 33 (9): 638 DOI: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2009.04.003

Blissfully retired after 35 years treating sexual abuse

#321259 - 02/06/10 05:46 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: Ken Singer, LCSW]
pluckmemory Offline

Registered: 03/27/08
Posts: 562

Among the men I know who've been molested and have reported it, they waited a lot longer than five years. Most of the men I know waited over two decades to come forward.

#321261 - 02/06/10 06:01 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: pluckmemory]
kidneythis Offline

Registered: 11/09/09
Posts: 1558
I know pluckmemory, for me at twenty years I would have denied vehemently that nothing had happened. it was 40 years after that I began to remember it.

As Mark Twain once quipped, history may not repeat itself, but it does rhyme.

#321265 - 02/06/10 06:44 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: kidneythis]
alan55 Offline

Registered: 08/19/09
Posts: 202
Loc: Seattle, WA
I'm 56 and it occured between the ages of 5 -7 years old. I told no one until this past June. Oh, the shame we bear. The humiliation we labor under for so long! The PTSD - I cannot be in a closed or darkened room - if I'm with someone I trust then I'm OK - sorta - for only so long - like the bedroom at night. Now combine a darkened room with not liking to be touched in a sexual way and you have a very confused wife and a scared husband. I also don't like water - in the sense of a pool or a sizeable body of water- since my perp would throw me into their pool.I'll take a shower, but for years it was always incredibly hot (I recall bathing in hot hot water to scrub myself clean and my folks thinking I just liked being clean!)but I've worked through the hot water part now...a '53 Chevrolet 5 window pick up, a hug from behind without being asked first, having to "make up" childhood stories in conversation so no one will know about me (most people don't need to know). And the perp goes free.

#321286 - 02/06/10 11:38 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: alan55]
pluckmemory Offline

Registered: 03/27/08
Posts: 562
Thanks for sharing, guys. You bring tears to my eyes.

#321313 - 02/07/10 05:42 AM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: pluckmemory]
petercorbett Offline

Registered: 07/27/08
Posts: 2509
Hi, my fraternal brothers,

Victims wait years to report.

Well for me it was 5 1/2 decades, or 55 & a half years, since the last act of sexual agression on this young boy.

I am soon to be 71 and only have been dealing with this therapy for 18 months.

Heal well, my fraternal brothers, heal well.

Little Pete & big Pete..but 1 (Irishmoose).

Edited by petercorbett (02/07/10 09:10 PM)
Edit Reason: lousy math.
Working Boys' Home 10-14 yrs old, grades 5-8. 1949-1953
A very humble alumni of the WOR Dahlonega, GA.
May 15-17 2009, Alta, Sep. 2009. Sequoia, 2010.
Hope Springs, 2010.

#321356 - 02/07/10 06:24 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: petercorbett]
catfish86 Offline

Registered: 10/27/09
Posts: 832
Loc: Ohio
My own case, I didn't recover the memories for decades. After the initial rape, a cop pulled us over and asked me if I was OK. I was too scared and confused to answer with what happened. As my mother was running from the farm with us, the Sheriff didn't really look into why a grown man wanted his 2 nephews so badly even though his refusal to let us leave or our mother take us was clearly kidnapping in itself. My own mother never had us examined which would have definitely revealed a rape had occurred. The resulting scars were identified in a military physical but I didn't recall the events. My uncle died unpunished as an old man. Bastard.

God grant me
The Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The Courage to change the things I can,
And the Wisdom to know the difference.

#321372 - 02/07/10 08:55 PM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: catfish86]
WalkingSouth Offline

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16270
Loc: Waldport, Oregon
For myself it was just over 40 years from the time of first abuse until I gained the courage to talk about it... to ANYONE.

"Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting 'Holy Shit! What a ride!'" ~Hunter S. Thompson

#321387 - 02/08/10 12:11 AM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: WalkingSouth]
pufferfish Offline

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
For me it was 35 years.

I was threatened umpteen times with a knife and subjected to stuff which would qualify today as waterboarding. Then when I remembered it, it made me "sick". My T said not to use the word sick but I haven't found a better one.



#321484 - 02/09/10 04:32 AM Re: Victims Wait Years to Report [Re: pufferfish]
ComicBookGuy Offline

Registered: 02/08/09
Posts: 443
Loc: London, England
26 years from incident to police report.

To be honest, nothing would have been done in the 80s anyway, the way I was treated in 2007 was the way I wanted it to be handled. The power to deal with it would've been taken away from me had I had the vocabulary to disclose back as a child, which I didn't.

Just glad the hardest work has been done before 40 in my case, and having picked up a college textbook for the first time in three weeks a couple of hours ago, my life's finally moving on the way I want it to. Thankfully newer generations of victims are reporting more quickly, in England anyway, can't speak for the other three Isles.



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