Child Sexual Abuse in the United States


Child sexual abuse is a treacherous epidemic that eats through the layers of American society. In the United States, the number of children who get abused increases every year. Sexual abuse can have serious negative consequences on children. It can disrupt their mental peace and inflict traumas on their psyche. Children who have become the victims of sexual abuse will have many behavioral disorders, and depression and anxiety will always haunt such children.

There will also entail in a number of adverse changes in their character. Most victims of child abuse become more and more aggressive in their behavior. Anger and hatred will keep such children away from their parents. These children, in the future, can get addicted to alcohol and other drugs. Fear of married life prevents them even from thinking of marriage. Some children, after being subjected to sexual abuse, develop sexual behaviors like homosexuality. Children have affected adversely and sometimes they even commit suicide once they are sexually abused.

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There are various reasons for the increased child sexual abuse in the U S. It is actually a hidden social problem. More and more children are being sexually abused and assaulted every year. There are a number of reasons of varied nature, for the increasing menace of child sexual abuse.

The first and foremost reason for the rampant child sexual abuse is the lack of awareness among children. Children do not know that it is a kind of exploitation. They do not understand that they are being sexually abused. Even if they have some apprehension that they are being sexually abused, they fail to find a remedy.

Those children who are sexually abused do not recognize what it is and usually, they are sexually abused by someone near to them in kin. So they do not get an idea whether it is wrong or not. The perpetrators threaten children to keep it a secret. Children become afraid of losing their parents and, therefore, they never tell it to them because they are silenced with threats that their parents would be killed, etc.

Another factor that adds to the increase in child sexual abuse in the United States is the lack of awareness among parents. Parents, in most cases, are ignorant about such a problem existing in their country. They allow their children to sleep with others, which gives opportunities for them to abuse the children.

Parents of those children who have been abused, usually never reveal it to anyone due to the fear of shame. This is actually a blessing in disguise for the offenders and it encourages them to continue without any interruption. If more and more people come up lodging complaints against such anti-social elements, there will be a sudden decline in the number of such crimes.

If the punishment for those people who abuse children is made more severe there can surely be a change in the attitude of such anti-social elements. Parents are afraid of the possible shame that they have to suffer due to the issue.

They also scold the innocent children and they get offended if they reveal it to their parents. Children are afraid of their parents and they never tell to them. This is actually the problem of lack of communication. Children should always have access to their parents and there should be such a relation between the parents and children that allows them to speak anything openly to them.

Alcoholism and the use of drugs are other factors that increase child sexual abuse in the United States. There are many instances in which a father is under drug or alcohol exploiting a female child. Many people once drunken forget about what they are and in what relation they stand to others. Alcoholism leads people to become insensitive and it creates an extra urge for sexual satisfaction. The use of any other drugs can also lead people to such acts. There are cases that tell about the fall of many good people due to overconsumption of alcohol or drugs.

People are afraid of many sexually transmitted diseases and they are on the lookout for persons without any sexually transmitted diseases. Usually, children would be free from such diseases. So some people in order to have safe sex always go for children who possibly have had no sex in the past. This also contributes to increasing the rate of child sexual abuse.

Research data shows that child sexual abuse is on the increase. “The National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect was released in September 1996, following up on previous studies conducted in 1980 and 1986. The study found that child abuse and neglect were seriously worsening. Between 1986 and 1993 the number of cases doubled, going from 1.4 million to 2.8 million; and the number of cases involving serious injuries nearly quadrupled, rising from 143,000 to almost 570,000.” (Hopper).

The statistics show that the rate of child sexual abuse is alarmingly on the increase. Many children are being sexually abused every day. “In 2005, the most recent year for which the U.S. government has figures, 12.1 of every 1,000 American children, almost 900,000 in all, suffered abuse by adults, with parents of victims accounting for almost 80 percent of the abusers.

Every day, about four children die in the U.S. because of abuse or neglect, most of them babies or toddlers. And those are just the cases authorities know about: for every incidence of child abuse or neglect that gets reported, it’s estimated that two others go unreported.” (Jaffe-Gill, Jaffe, and Segal).


These facts reveal that child sexual abuse in the United States is rising at an alarmingly rapid pace. It is a social problem that exists in the United States and it needs to be dealt with seriously. Each year thousands of children are being abused. It is quite shocking that it has become very common in the United States. Child sexual abuse affects the victim and society adversely. The scar that child sexual abuse leaves on society, as well as the children, is ever-lasting and disturbing.

Work Cited

Hopper, Jim. Child Abuse: Statistics, Research, and Resources. 2007. Web.

Jaffe-Gill, Ellen., Jaffe, Jaelline., and Segal, Jeanne. Under stand, Prevent & Resolve Life’s Challenges: Child Abuse and Neglect: Types, Signs, Symptoms, Caused and Getting Help: Child Abuse Fact. Helpguide. 2008. Web.