It still remains perhaps the most inhuman and innately harmful happening that has the potential of ruining the rest of child's life. While Child sexual abuse remains illegal in all countries, it has also been almost impossible to eradicate it completely. This is mainly because the child is usually abused by either family members, or friends and it is always by somebody in the immediate circle and this makes it difficult for the crime to get reported or the abuser punished.
Child sexual abuse is not something momentary that could be forgotten immediately. Sometimes it could go on for years unnoticed by others and the threatened child might not reveal the sexual abuse. It has always produced short and long term negative effects on victims. They could be suffering from multi-dimensional long and short range behavioural and mental, social and psychological problems with unfortunate results that would not allow them to live a proper life with a balanced outlook.
"Research has shown that child sexual abuse victims are more likely to be the victims of rape or to be involved in physically abusive relationships as adults" http://www.apa.org/releases/sexabuse/effects.html
Research also has shown that child abuse is not a momentary happening without further complications. On the contrary, it has been repeatedly proved that child sexual assault victims will carry the trauma and scars of the event for the rest of their lives and constantly suffer from the physical and psychological resultant difficulties. Earlier, it was presumed that children could recover from child abuse in latter life. Psychological studies, especially the writings of Dr. Sigmund Freud, have shown clearly that it could not so easy and in majority of cases, it is impossible. Reactions, depending on the severity, number of length of abuse could range between mild and intense.
"These problems typically include depression, anxiety, guilt, fear, sexual dysfunction, withdrawal, and acting out. Depending on the severity of the incident, victims of sexual abuse may also develop fear and anxiety regarding the opposite sex or sexual issues and may display inappropriate sexual behaviour" (Ibid).
In several advanced countries, child abuse is considered to be root cause of most of the mental health problems later in life. Of course, this need not be the only cause of mental ill-health, but it could be a substantial cause, leading to an imbalanced and depressed, brooding mind. It is placed on the public health agenda in UK. Earlier, self-disclosure was rare in a society, where such a disclosure was considered to be shameful for the child even in latter years, and more so, for the family. Usually, adult members of family would have been involved in such an abuse, or sometimes a bigger child. So, to save reputation and future, other family members successfully used to cover up such crimes by separating the child from such an adult. Once the danger was shaken off, parents were inclined to think that child would be all right. After further research in the field, it was proved that the child would never be able to shake off all the ill effects of its abuse even after growing up. This is the main disturbing factor about child abuse. Not only a child gets subjected to such a