Chronic abuse creates layers of traumatic experience, with each layer reinforcing previous layers of emotional damage

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Sometimes people seem to think that sexually abused males are defective and toxic because they were sexually abused. Or maybe people think they were defective and toxic before the abuse, and that’s why the abuse occurred. Neither belief is true, of course. But people nonetheless think this way.

Unfortunately, sexual abuse, like other forms of trauma, typically leads to all sorts of emotional and psychological issues. This is even more likely if/when the trauma is chronic (repeating)—as sexual abuse very often is. One study (focused on trauma in general rather than sex abuse in particular) found that survivors of chronic childhood abuse (four or more significantly traumatic experiences prior to age 18) are:

1.8 times as likely to smoke
1.9 times as likely to be obese
2.4 times as likely to experience ongoing anxiety
2.5 times as likely to have panic reactions
3.6 times as likely to be depressed
3.6 times as likely to be promiscuous
6.6 times as likely to engage in early-life sexual intercourse
7.2 times as likely to become alcoholic
11.1 times as likely to become intravenous drug users

So there is a clear and undeniable link between childhood trauma, in particular chronic trauma, and a wide variety of symptoms and disorders. Essentially, chronic abuse creates layers of traumatic experience, with each layer reinforcing previous layers of emotional damage. In time, the layers are like an onion. The deeper you cut, the more pungent it becomes, and the more likely you are to evoke tears. And this is true regardless of a victim’s gender. Males suffer just as much as females.

Author: betterblokesnz