How Sexual Abuse Causes Dysfunction in Children and Adults
Sexual abuse is a traumatic experience that can have lasting effects on an individual’s physical, emotional, and psychological well-being. Unfortunately, the effects of sexual abuse can extend far beyond the immediate aftermath of the abuse. In this post, I will address how sexual abuse causes dysfunction in both children and adults and the importance of seeking professional help to address these issues.
Effects of Sexual Abuse on Children
Children who have experienced sexual abuse may struggle with a range of emotional and behavioral issues, including:
- Anxiety and depression
- Difficulty sleeping or nightmares
- Anger or aggression
- Withdrawal or social isolation
- Poor self-esteem or self-worth
- Self-harm or suicidal thoughts
In addition to these emotional and behavioral issues, sexual abuse can also have physical effects, such as chronic pain or digestive issues. Children who have experienced sexual abuse may also struggle with school performance, and their ability to form and maintain healthy relationships may be impacted.
Effects of Sexual Abuse on Adults
For adults who have experienced sexual abuse, the effects can be equally profound. Here are some common effects of sexual abuse on adults:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Depression and anxiety
- Difficulty with intimacy or sexual dysfunction
- Substance abuse or other self-destructive behaviors
- Eating disorders or other physical health problems
- Relationship issues, including difficulties with trust and intimacy
These effects can be particularly challenging for adults who have experienced sexual abuse in childhood, as they may have had to cope with these issues for many years.
Seeking Professional Help
Seeking professional help can be an important step towards healing and recovery. Therapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, trauma-focused therapy, EMDR, metaphysical healing modalities, and holistic alternative medicines, can help survivors address the emotional and behavioral issues that can result from sexual abuse. Medications, such as antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication, may also be helpful in managing symptoms for a temporary aid and not long term. Pharmaceuticals are only band aids and do not assist the root cause, you will have to do the work.
In addition to seeking professional help, survivors of sexual abuse can also benefit from self-care practices, such as meditation, exercise, or spending time in nature. Building a support system of trusted friends and family members can also be helpful in coping with the effects of sexual abuse.
Sexual abuse is a traumatic experience that can cause dysfunction in both children and adults. The effects of sexual abuse can be long-lasting and impact all areas of an individual’s life. It’s important to seek professional help to address these issues and to practice self-care and build a support system. Remember, if you or someone you know has experienced sexual abuse, there is help and support available. Please contact me.