Imagine a society afflicted by a scourge which struck down a quarter of its daughters and up to one in eight of its sons.
Imagine also that this plague, while not immediately fatal, lurked in the bodies and minds of these young children for decades, making them up to sixteen times more likely to experience its disastrous long-term effects.
Finally, imagine the nature of these effects: life-threatening starvation, suicide, persistent nightmares, drug and alcohol abuse and a whole host of intractable psychiatric disorders requiring life-long treatment.”
Dr William Glaser, Honorary Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne
Sexual abuse not only affects a person physically but also emotionally and socially.
Their confidence, dignity, and sexuality seems violated.
While a child may not fully understand what is going on, sexual abuse does have an impact on their growth and development.
According to United Nations International Children Education Fund study, it was reported that Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) in Indian girls was 42%.
A Government of India, Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) study which interviewed 125,000 children in 13 Indian states revealed that the prevalence of all forms of child abuse is extremely high (physical abuse [66%], sexual abuse [50%], and emotional abuse [50%]).
This major state-sponsored survey in India reported the prevalence of CSA as 53%.
Boys were equally affected and more than 20% were subjected to severe forms of sexual abuse that included: sexual assault, making the child fondle private parts, making the child exhibit private body parts, and being photographed in the nude.
In both the major surveys, the majority of the abusers were people known to the child or in a position of trust and responsibility.
Several reports indicate that neighbours, friends, close relatives, and acquaintances, and employers at workplaces are the most common abusers. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8445113/)
Crosswave (Instagram handle: @crosswave)
has been talking about this issue and bringing these shocking stats into the light.
We spoke to the staff and cross wave and asked them why did they choose to talk about Child Sexual Abuse and here’s what they had to say
“Last year, when we were brainstorming ideas for topics, we thought that we could do something along the lines of abuse.
Later that year, we had a bunch of strategy meetings for what we wanted to do in 2022 and there we decided to make abuse one out of the five topics that we wanted to particularly focus on.
We had also approached Pranitha akka by then and while talking to her, we began to think that we could focus on people who have been through child sexual abuse as our primary audience.
The reason was because of the magnitude of children who have been abused.”
If you, or someone close to you, have been suffering from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse, we encourage you to seek help.
And all the elders out there pay close attention to anyone forming a relationship with your child or children you know, if you see any signs of abuse make sure you seek help immediately.