Child Abuse and Neglect

870 Words4 Pages
There have been various studies based on childhood sexual abuse and relationships in adulthood. There have been studies that had shown that multiple maltreatment and loss experiences in childhood interfered with the formation of secure attachments that created adult problems in self and social functioning. Childhood maltreatment showed there was poor adult self-functioning in the form of higher levels of depression and lower levels of self-esteem. Self blame in response to childhood sexual abuse and maltreatment in adult relationships also predicted poorer adult self and social functioning for individuals with childhood sexual abuse.
A study by Gerard McCarthy and Alan Taylor have shown that abusive childhood experiences are linked to difficulties in establishing supportive cohabiting relationships during adulthood. Their study aims to identify specific psychological factors mediating links between child abuse and adverse adult psychological functioning. Participants who had experienced child abuse were more likely to experience difficulties in adult love relationships, but self-esteem and relationship attributions were not found to be linked to child abuse.
The most common effect of childhood sexual abuse during adulthood for women is rage. A study by Susan G. Painter and Carol C. Howell studied women’s sexuality after childhood sexual abuse. Researchers in this particular study interviewed women who expressed raged through their sexuality. Results indicated that rage and maladaptive behaviors are learned in childhood and carry over to adult relationships. Although anger is common in the abused female, it is frequently pushed into unconscious at the time of the abuse. When the abused becomes aware of her anger, it has become rage. Women who were sexually abused as children grow up repressing anger; as a result they may enter adulthood totally unaware of the rage that lies within them. Researchers (Draucker, 1996; Maltz, 1991) reported that childhood sexual abuse may cause negative attitudes about touch and sex that result in troublesome reactions to adult sex.
Many incest survivors had struggle with their abuse unaided, and that number of those who are in prisons, mental institutions, or working in prostitution have been influenced by a history of sexual abuse. Those who have been most affected by such abuse may be unable to verbalize their pain and anger. Child sexual abuse is a violation that affects every aspect of a child’s life. Trusting relationships may be brought into question for a child once sexual boundaries have been violated.
The sexually abused child experiences a pervasive anxiety that cannot be relieved by the usual self-comforting behaviors of children.
Get Access