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Male child sexual abuse : a qualitative exploration of survivors' perceptions of their abuse

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posted on 15.12.2014, 10:46 by Wendy. Coetzee
Despite a growing literature on child sexual abuse, there has been a noticeably slower recognition of men as victims of child sexual abuse. As a consequence, research in this area has remained limited. This lack of recognition may reflect the wider societal reluctance to acknowledge men as victims of sex abuse. Previous research has highlighted that men who have been sexually abused experience difficulties with their social sex role and sexual orientation identities.;This research set out to explore men's perceptions of the effects of their childhood sexual abuse, with particular reference to the issues of sexual and gender identity. The aim of this was to explore the experiences of six male survivors. All six participants were interviewed using a semi-structured format and the interviews were analysed using a social constructionist revision of grounded theory.;The main findings suggest that the lack of secure attachments with parents and other adult figures resulted in difficulties disclosing the abuse. Furthermore, the concealment and intemalisation of blame for the abuse resulted in later emotional difficulties and confusion in assuming a 'masculine' identity. The findings from this research suggest there are significant clinical implications for the way in which professionals and services address the issue of male child sexual abuse.


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University of Leicester

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