For victims of childhood sexual abuse, the experience can sometimes continue into the teenage years and last an extended amount of time. Sadly, life for that child can change dramatically—taking away an innocent childhood and memorable teen years. However, oftentimes an adult perpetrator or teen abuser doesn’t make the initial contact until the victim is a teen. In either event, the victim of sexual abuse during childhood, adolescence, or teen years can cause difficulties for the underage sexual abuse victim.
For those being abused during such a formative time in their lives, they can struggle with their identity, independence, reality, and life in general. Teen years are already difficult for many children, and when abuse is occurring during such an unstable time in their life—it can lead to lifelong issues.
Sexual Abuse and Your Teen
If you believe your teenager is being sexually abused at school, church, or at a different organization, you might be wondering why your son or daughter hasn’t told you about it. Unfortunately, teen and child abuse victims often don’t report the abuse because they are scared. For this reason, it is good to be aware of the signs of sexual abuse in teenagers, such as:
- Excessive bathing
- Poor hygiene
- Eating disorders
- Suicide attempts
- Bleeding and pain from the genitals, anal region, or mouth
- Sexual promiscuity
- Sudden problems at school
Even if your teenage son or daughter is displaying one of these signs and you are concerned, it doesn’t mean that he or she is definitely being sexually abused. However, you don’t want to ignore these signs that something wrong could be occurring. If your child displays more than one of these signs, it could indicate sexual abuse. For this reason, it is important that you pay close attention and handle the situation appropriately.
How to Deal With Teen Sexual Abuse
Make sure you talk with trained professionals to make sure you know how to handle the situation. If sexual abuse is occurring, you will need to get the police, counselors, and a law firm involved to help your child and family through this process. Unfortunately, sexual abuse victims can experience physical, emotional, and psychological trauma. This is why it is important that you handle the situation appropriately so that your teenage son or daughter has the best chance at healing and recovery.
To find out more about this delicate matter, the Mallard Law Firm has many articles, blogs, videos, and even a book on this subject that can help you during this time. Please feel free to order a free copy of our book, When the Unthinkable Happens: Your Guide to Florida Child Abuse Claims.