Boy Scout Confidential Files Reveal Patterns of Abuse

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has come under fire as its “Confidential Files” – a blacklist of adults banned from scouting for sexual abuse or molestation — have come to light. The files, submitted as evidence in lawsuits under court order, show the BSA banned about 5,000 people from 1947 through 2004. Sexual abuse scandals within other youth-service oriented programs show similar patterns of behavior, including workers dismissing victims, hiding abuse from the public, putting too much faith in adult colleagues and organizations failing to educate staff about abuse. As the problem becomes more public because of scandals such as the Penn State and Catholic Church child sexual-abuse scandals, it has become more apparent that these patterns of behavior are similar among those who mishandle the problem. For the full story via Youth Today, click here.

On the Lookout for the Subtle Sign of Child Sexual Abuse

As we watch the story of the sexual abuse scandals unfold at Penn State and now Syracuse, the first response for many was shock and concern for the boys who lives were so profoundly affected. In speaking with many parents, the next response was “could this happen to my kid, and would I know if it did?”

It is a mistake to assume they would tell us, if something like this happened to our kids. Most children who suffer this kind of abuse never tell their parents. If the child is very young they may stay silent simply because they just don’t understand what has happened to them. It is also common that the victim may assume that if something this awful happened to them, they somehow must have deserved it.

On the Lookout for the Subtle Signs of Child Sexual Abuse

As we watch the story of the sexual abuse scandals unfold at Penn State and now Syracuse, the first response for many was shock and concern for the boys who lives were so profoundly affected. In speaking with many parents, the next response was “could this happen to my kid, and would I know if it did?”

It is a mistake to assume they would tell us, if something like this happened to our kids. Most children who suffer this kind of abuse never tell their parents. If the child is very young they may stay silent simply because they just don’t understand what has happened to them. It is also common that the victim may assume that if something this awful happened to them, they somehow must have deserved it.

Child Sex Abuse Could Lead to Psychosis Later in Life

Kids who’ve been sexually abused, particularly if the abuse involved penetration and occurred during early adolescence, are at risk for later developing a psychotic disorder, according to a case-control study done in Australia. The rate of psychotic and schizophrenic illnesses was significantly higher among those who were sexually abused as children. The rate among 2,759 children who experienced abuse was 2.8 percent compared to the control group, which only had 1.4 percent. And for the 1,737 cases where penetration occurred, the rate of subsequent psychosis was 3.4%, according to the November Archives of General Psychiatry. The study, called Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders in a Cohort of Sexually Abused Children, found that these children have increased risks for several health problems such as depression, anxiety and substance abuse.