Sexual abuse can inflict a lot of trauma, pain, and even injury. Unfortunately, sexual abuse can occur anywhere and by anyone. In knowing that, it is wise to understand that sexual abuse can also happen to anyone, which includes your children. Sadly, many children are targeted because of their innocence and vulnerability. As a parent or loved one, this may put a lot of stress on you. Even more unfortunate, children are very likely to be sexually abused or sexually assaulted in the places where parents feel they are the most safe and protected. Places such as school, after school care, a family member’s home, or even your own home by someone you trust. Usually victims are so ashamed they either refuse to inform their parents or they do not truly understand that these things are abuse and unacceptable. In some cases, even the parents — out of sheer embarrassment or fear — settle for separating themselves and their children from the situation by relocating. In the cases where a child does not come forward to inform a parent or guardian of sexual abuse, it is important that parents know what signs a child may show that insinuate there may have been sexual abuse.
Physical Indications of Abuse
Obviously physical signs help provide evidence for a case. There may be injuries that your child sustained from being pulled aggressively or the genital area may show signs of abuse. Even more so, sexually transmitted diseases can be evidence in a case. These are all clear physical indications that a child has been abused.
Emotional Indications of Abuse
Your child may not tell you that they were sexually assaulted, and this may tell you everything you need to know. After being sexually abused, your child may respond by shutting down, sleep more, or even speak more aggressively or be easily agitated. Talking to your child about their change in behavior may help. This may not be common behavior for your child, which may prompt a conversation that informs you of a sexual assault.
A change in your child’s behavior is sometimes very apparent, in the event that physical marks are hidden and cannot be seen. You may notice that your child no longer has the desire to go certain places, be around particular people, or go places alone.
Speak with an Attorney
While not every sign may be clear, inquire once they have come to your attention. Should your child, or someone you know be a victim of sexual abuse, speak with an attorney, like a Dekalb trial attorney, to see what legal options you have. In some cases, you may qualify to be compensated for the injuries and aftermath the abuse inflicted.