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Sexual Deviance Info

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Sexual addiction- Hypoactive sexual desire disorder

Sexual abuse- rape, spousal abuse


Sexual abuse is physical or psychological abuse that involves sexual behavior. Most forms of sexual abuse are crimes in most countries. Forms of sexual abuse include rape and indecent assault.

Women and children are the most frequent victims of sexual abuse, but men can also suffer from it. Most sexual abusers are male, but there is a significant minority of female sexual abusers.

Sexual abuse is non-consensual, and should be distinguished from consensual sex, or activities such as BDSM. Many activities which are acceptable between consenting partners would constitute sexual abuse if forced on a non-consenting person. It should be noted that in some jurisdictions, people under a prescribed age of consent are presumed by law to be unable to give consent to some or any sexual activities. Often it also refers to activities that are morally condemned in society. These are ambiguous definitions, because moral norms, socially accepted behaviour and laws vary greatly both nationally and internationally and because the definition is too wide to be useful

Child sexual abuse

Child sexual abuse [CSA] denotes sexual abuse of or sexual activity with children. The term has both moral and legal connotations. There is variation in criteria and specificity of the definition of "child sexual abuse", as with "sexual abuse", even in scientific literature.



Child sexual abuse is a criminal offense everywhere, although the range of activities that are prosecuted varies between countries. Child sexual abuse is more difficult to define than sexual abuse in general, because of debates over who is capable of giving consent. In addition to activities which would be considered sexual abuse between adults, this often includes

sex between a child below a predefined age of consent (generally between 12 and 18 years) and an adult or a much older child

acting as a pimp for child prostitution (including a parent acting as a pimp)

inducing a child to behave sexually in a performance, or to appear in child pornography

lewd action towards children, including disseminating pornography to a minor.

According to United States law, for instance, children can only give simple but not informed consent to sexual activity. A major who performs sexual acts with a minor is guilty of statutory rape (or sex without consent when the child is very young). According to some state laws in the U.S., a minor, similarly, cannot give informed consent to another minor; two minors engaging in sexual activity may both be, somewhat paradoxically, classified as victims of sexual abuse. Cases in which both participants are minors have historically not been prosecuted, although a shift in the direction of prosecuting minors for consensual sex with other minors seems to have occurred in the last several decades. (See Ethical Treatment for All Youth ( for examples.)


Criticism of the definition

Some researchers such as Rind contend that this grouping of all sexual activity with minors with other forms of abuse makes it difficult to study the effects of abuse on children. Others claim that a distinction should be made between severe sexual abuse that is often associated with suicidal tendencies, sexual aggression, and self-mutilation (Kisiel and Lyons, 2001) and other types of CSA that do not necessarily have these severe negative effects.

Critics of outlawing sex with children, including some sociologists, psychologists, and educators as well as pedophile emancipation groups, disagree with labelling all child sexual activity as abuse and object to the use of terms victim and perpetrator when describing consensual acts. Many doubt that there is scientific evidence that consensual sexual activity causes harm to minors and argue that child sexual abuse is considered a crime solely because of sexual morality. Rind et al. (1998) stated that "CSA does not cause intense harm on a pervasive basis". Some further argue that denying a child the right to give informed consent ignores his/her right to sexual self-determination.


Effects of sexual abuse on children

A wide range of psychological, emotional, physical, and social effects has been attributed to child sexual abuse, including "anxiety, depression, obsession, compulsion, grief, post-traumatic reactions, poor self perception, sexual dysfunction, social dysfunction, dysfunction of relationships, poor education and employment records, and a range of physical symptoms" (Smith et al., 1995). There is a debate about how best to determine the causal dependency for some of these effects. A controversial study of child sexual abuse, Rind et al. (1998), found the confounding variable of poor family environment as a plausible cause for the majority of negative effects. Children with such a background are more likely to become victims of abusers.

The effect of Sexual Abuse on children in some cases leads to sexual behavior, physically and verbally in social. This behavior in social environments

such as school and even the home is is usually frowned upon by other children, and authority figures including parents. This can in some cases cause child to develop a very low self-esteem, and self-hate from the alienation from their peers. This can lead children to develop shyness, anti-social behavior, and high attention seeking behavior. This effect on a child's behavior when combined with the sexual initiation can lead to far more complex issues. This shows that even in consensual cases of sexual initiation on a child that alienation is possible in societies that do not accept this behavior.

The percentage of adults suffering from long-term effects is unknown. Smith quotes a British study that showed that 13% of adults sexually abused as children suffered from long-term consequences.

Wakefield and Underwager (1991) note the difference between CSA experiences of boys and girls, where more boys than girls report the experience as neutral or positive, saying that "It may be that women perceive such experiences as sexual violation, while men perceive them as sexual initiation."




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