Child Victims

Many children are sexually abused over a period of years. Long-term abuse in intra-familial situations may begin when the child is young and continue well into adolescence or even after the child leaves home.

In some instances, child sexual abuse may be restricted to fondling or genital touching; other instances may begin that way and escalate to penetration and/or intercourse after an extended period of time. Some children become adolescents before realizing that the sexual contact they have experienced is wrong and does not occur in most households. By this time, however, the child may have assumed feelings of guilt about the sexual activities and may be even more reluctant to reveal the situation to an adult or other family member.

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