2 Warnings For Sexual Assault Forum Users

By Sarah Waters

It is believed that 1 out of every 4 girls, and one in 7 boys will experience forced sexual contact before the age of 18. Internet forums abound to help survivors of child sexual abuse, but they should be used with caution. As unreal as it seems, these forums can, in some cases, inflict further harm on already damaged survivors.

The first thing to consider is whether or not the forum you choose can be read publicly. This means that anyone who is on the internet can read postings, not just people who are members of the forum. It may feel safer to know only members of the forum can read what is posted. On the other hand, it is possible that sexual predators may create false profiles and join the forums anyway. They receive sexual stimulation when detailed accounts of child sex abuse are shared, and more frighteningly, they may befriend abuse survivors and try to make contact outside the Internet. Even in a place "safe" for abuse victims, you must be wary of those who encourage meeting in the real world.

The second warning is: Not All Abuse Is Created Equally. There is danger in comparing your reaction to childhood sexual abuse to the reactions of others. There are so many factors involved, some of which are who did the abusing, what the abuse actually entailed, and the psychological development of the child at the time the abuse occurred. Individual victims' personalities also play a role in how they deal with the abuse. Comparing yourself to another victim is like comparing apples and oranges, and can cause you to wonder why you are not coping as well as someone else. The truth is there is no right way to deal with your sexual abuse. There is just the way you choose to deal with it.

Internet forums for survivors of childhood sexual abuse can be great resources for finding support from people who understand what you're going through. As with all things, you just need to be cautious.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sarah Waters is a survivor of childhood sexual assault. She has written a gut-wrenching ebook about her abuse and the long term consequences she faces. You may learn more about her struggle at [http://www.sarahsurvives.com]
Article Source: 2 Warnings For Sexual Assault Forum Users

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