Child Sexual Abuse: Fracturing Family Life
Research has shown that childhood sexual abuse can have damaging long-term effects on family life and relationships. Some effects have been widely recognised such as feelings of betrayal and confusion when fathers abuse, or bitterness at mothers who cannot protect. A new qualitative research study with a group of women survivors in Edinburgh, recruited because of their contact with mental health services, has found wide-ranging and subtle effects on family life that endure over the lifecourse and long after the abuse has ended. The findings suggest the value of further research on these topics with both men and women abused in childhood, and provide insight for a variety of professionals working with women and families.