Reasons for the reluctance to disclose sexual abuse by middle childhood children
Fighting sexual violence against women and children in South Africa is regarded as a priority. The aim of this study is to explore the reasons for the reluctance to disclose sexual abuse by middle childhood children. Some of the factors that were highlighted that cause the reluctance to disclose sexual abuse by middle childhood children were: threats made by the perpetrator, the relationship with the perpetrator, stigmatization and talking about sexual related matters were seen as a taboo. The study reveals that there is lack of parental support especially when the perpetrator is a family member as they want to avoid embarrassment. It was also discovered that it is difficult for those parents who have unresolved issues of sexual abuse to handle their children’s disclosure. The study further shows that people do not understand the justice process especially the bail conditions. They lose faith in the system especially when they see the perpetrator outside and they do not understand that the investigation is still in process. It was discovered that FCS (Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit) and FSW (Forensic Social Work) offices/environment should be better equipped and child friendly to put sexually abused children at ease. It was indicated that parents should supervise their children at all times. Children should be assured that it is not their fault and they do not deserve to be sexually abused.
- Humanities