Signs of a Sexually Abused Child

Children who are sexually abused may exhibit behavioral changes, based on their age.

Children up to age 3 may exhibit

  • Fear or excessive crying
  • Vomiting
  • Feeding problems
  • Bowel problems
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Failure to thrive

Children ages 2 to 9 may exhibit:

  • Fear of particular people, places or activities
  • Regression to earlier behaviors such as bed wetting or stranger anxiety
  • Victimization of others
  • Excessive masturbation
  • Feelings of shame or guilt
  • Nightmares or sleep disturbances
  • Withdrawal from family or friends
  • Fear of attack recurring
  • Eating disturbances

Symptoms of sexual abuse in older children and adolescents include

  • Depression
  • Nightmares or sleep disturbances
  • Poor school performance
  • Promiscuity
  • Substance abuse
  • Aggression
  • Running away from home
  • Fear of attack recurring
  • Eating disturbances
  • Early pregnancy or marriage
  • Suicidal gestures
  • Anger about being forced into situation beyond one’s control
  • Pseudo-mature behaviors
 

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Project Sakinah
Dar al Islam
P.O. Box 180
Abiquiu, NM  87510

505.484.8253