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After seeing the movie Precious and hearing Sapphire at a book signing, I had to read the book, Push. I wanted to see if the movie followed the spirit of the book.

While the movie did follow its spirit, I found the book to be much more descriptive in its depiction of the sexual abuse. The narrator in the book was Precious. The reader got a much clearer picture of what goes through the mind of a child being raped, being molested. Precious, in her own words, describes her pain, her confusion, and her anger.  She didn’t understand what was happening to her, or why. Read the rest of this entry »

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Push is the novel written by Sapphire and was the inspiration for the movie Precious. The character of Precious Jones is a conglomerate of many stories Sapphire heard while she lived in Harlem. It is not about one particular person.

I have not read Push yet; however, I had the privilege of listening to Sapphire speak a week ago at the Central Library in Los Angeles. I do plan to read Push because of what Sapphire said during the presentation. Read the rest of this entry »

I had already been through years of my own therapy as well as therapy training. I had already worked through issues of physical and emotional abuse, the trauma of escaping from Communist China, racism, cancer, and two respiratory illness in which I nearly died.

One more thing was almost more than I could bear!

Yet, I forced myself to be brutally honest. I had to admit that something was still missing in my life. Here I was a therapist, encouraging my clients to be true to themselves. And, I so didn’t want to know.

The irony of this was not lost on me!

I finally screwed up my courage and made that fateful call to my clinical supervisor.

I was fortunate to have a supervisor that had also been my therapist for 20 years.  She was also a certified hypnotherapist. I asked her to take me into a hypnotic trance to see what I remembered.

To my horror, I remembered everything! I was only 4 years old. Read the rest of this entry »

Child sexual abuse, or incest, is one of the most insidious types of violence perpetrated on innocent children:

  • 1 in 4 girls is sexually abused before the age of 18. (96)
  • 1 in 6 boys is sexually abused before the age of 18. (96)
  • 1 in 5 children are solicited sexually while on the internet. (30, 87)
  • Nearly 70% of all reported sexual assaults (including assaults on adults) occur to children ages 17 and under. (76)
  • An estimated 39 million survivors of childhood sexual abuse exist in America today.

While we are teaching children to be wary of strangers, no one wants to believe that many are abused by family members and friends:

  • 30-40% of victims are abused by a family member. (2, 44, 76)
  • Another 50% are abused by someone outside of the family whom they know and trust.
  • Approximately 40% are abused by older or larger children whom they know. (1, 44)
  • Therefore, only 10% are abused by strangers.

More shocking, children are violated when young:

  • The median age for reported abuse is 9 years old. (64)
  • More than 20% of children are sexually abused before the age of 8. (76)
  • Nearly 50% of all victims of forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object, and forcible fondling are children under 12. (74, 76)

(Above statistics in Darkness2light.org).

Sometimes, so young that they have no way to defend themselves, let alone understand what is happening to them.

Sometimes, so young that they have no memory of  it.  Yet, abuse affects everything in their life – sex, relationships, work, physical and mental health – and they don’t know why!

This is what happened to me. I blocked out all memory of this abuse.  While it is personal, my story starts with my professional life. Read the rest of this entry »

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