ERIC Number: ED283077
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Treatment and Therapy for the Sexually Abused Child.
Leister, Sandra C.
Little information is available on therapeutic interventions or counseling techniques used with sexually abused children. Many experts consider parental and family support to be the single most important factor in preventing abuse from becoming a life destroying event. The goals of therapy are to make the child and family feel better about themselves, improve social skills, develop communication, maintain daily functioning, and reduce stress. Molestation must be talked about openly until the child victim has worked through it. Experts disagree on the appropriateness of group therapy for working with these children. The effects of the molestation on the child may depend on sexual assault variables, demographic variables, life stresses, victim's coping skills, and the support structure of the victim's social networks. To determine what professionals (N=16) found to be effective in their work with child sexual abuse victims, semi-structured interviews were conducted with counselors, social workers, psychologists, and a pediatrician. A content analysis of responses indicated that subjects found noncognitive techniques, play therapy, and reassurance to be among the most effective therapy techniques. In contrast to recommendations from the literature, respondents did not report a focus on working with the family. Content analysis is recommended as one way to investigate the sensitive issue of child sexual abuse, and also a way to expand on available information. (NB)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Washington, DC, April 20-24, 1987).