This study was conducted to assess sexual victimization recognition and non-disclosure of young adolescents proximate to the age of the abuse. Participants were 214 middle school pupils, ages 12 to 15 who were presented with Informed Consent, giving them the right not to respond, presented brief information on Body Safety, and asked to respond to five questions. The Body Safety information and administration of the survey were on videotape for ease and consistency of data collection.Three null hypotheses were tested using Chi square and three research questions were analyzed by descriptive, non-statistical trend analysis. The following results were noted:
The frequency of male and female responses of potential victimization did not differ significantly from expected victimization frequencies.
Significantly more females than males made responses of potential sexual victimization. There was no significant difference between males and females in frequency of affirmation of sexual victimization.
For the second administration of the SARANDI to the same participants, there were increases in the frequency of responses of “I don’t know” to having been sexually abused, increases in the frequency of responses of “Yes” to all three of the potential sexual abuse questions, and increases in frequency of responses of “Yes” to having been sexually abused.
Of the young adolescents who responded that they had been subjected to one or more of the three potentially sexually abusive situations, 90 percent responded that they had not disclosed such to an adult. Of the young adolescent males and females who affirmed abuse, 100 percent responded that they had not disclosed the abuse to an adult.
Of the young adolescents who responded that they had been subjected to one or more of the three “unhealthy” sexual behaviors by someone older than them, 58 percent responded that they had not been sexually abused and 18 percent responded that they did not know if they had been sexually abused.
There were no self-referrals to the school counselor for sexual abuse disclosure and no false allegations of sexual abuse reported to the school counselor in the month prior to data collection, in the time interval between the first and second administrations of the SARANDI, nor in the month subsequent to data collection.
Implications for practice and recommendations for further research are discussed.
Dr. Faulkner’s Research & Recommended Resources
Sexual Abuse Recognition and Non-Disclosure of Young Adolescents, which includes the background research, ethical and legal issues, methodology, results, discussion, conclusions, implications and recommendations can be obtained by either ordering it through:
EMI 300 North Zeeb Road P.O. Box 1346 Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1346 Phone: 1-800-521-0600
or, calling for it through the International Database interlibrary loan #35693021.
- Is your child being sexually assaulted? How do you know?
- Shouldn’t Children Have the Right to Speak Out Anonymously?
- Cross the Bridge of Secrecy
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