I continue to provide statistics about child abuse because the general public and the media maintain their “Brick Wall of Denial” about America’s largest humanitarian crisis. These statistics will reinforce to survivors the extent of the problem—that, indeed, child abuse continues to be rampant throughout the United States.
Study #1 – Purpose: Examine current psychological distress in a sample of mothers of child psychiatric outpatients to assess the effect that a mother’s traumatic experiences may have on psychiatric distress.
- Age ranges: 25 to 51 Mean = 38
- Marital Status:
Married/Living with Partner – 68%
Single/Widowed/Divorced/Living Alone – 32%
Some post-secondary education – 77%
High School graduate – 23%
Employed full time – 34%
Employed part time – 23%
Full time homemakers – 33%
Unemployed/Disabled – 10%
- Household Median Income: $36,000
Outcome: 34.7% of the participants reported a history of childhood sexual abuse.
Study #2 – Purpose: Determine the prevalence of childhood abuse and the adult adverse outcomes of substance abuse, homelessness, and criminal victimization among persons with severe mental illness, who were recently involuntarily hospitalized, and to examine the relationship between childhood abuse and these adverse outcomes.
- Age ranges:
18 to 29-years-old – 18.6%
30 to 44-years-old – 54.3%
45 and Over – 27.1%
Male – 54.3%
Female – 45.7%
<High School – 37.2%
High School – 39.4%’
>High School – 23.4%
- Marital Status:
Married/Cohabitating – 18.1%
Single/Divorced /Widowed – 81.9%
Rural – 45.7%
Urban – 54.3%
Outcome: 58% reported being the victim of either childhood sexual and/or childhood physical abuse.
- Report of childhood physical abuse45.7%
- Report of childhood sexual abuse36.2%
- Report of both physical and sexual abuse23.9%
Study #3 – Purpose: Examine the prevalence and psychological sequelae of childhood sexual and physical abuse in adults from the general population.
- Age range:
18 to 90 [Mean = 46]
Male – 49.6%
Female – 50.4%
- Marital Status:
Married/Cohabitating – 55.4%
Never Married – 18.2%
Separated/Divorced – 16.85%
Widowed – 9.45%
Some College and Trade School – 32.5%
$10,000 - $19,000: 19.3%
$20,000 - $29,999: 18.5%
- 32.3% of women and 14.2% of men reported childhood experiences that satisfied the current criteria for sexual abuse. Of these cases, a number of abuse characteristics did not differ according to sex of subject.
- Incest – 46.8%
- Oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by penis/other object – 52.8%
- Age of first sexual assault:
As per other general population studies, the current results indicate that a self-reported history of sexual or physical abuse is relatively common. Approximately 32% of general population females and 14% of males reported childhood sexual abuse, and 20% and 22% of females and males, respectively, reported childhood physical abuse. Such numbers reinforce the notion that child maltreatment is a significant phenomenon in North American culture.
 “Childhood sexual abuse, adult trauma, and psychological distress among mothers of child psychiatric outpatients,” Department of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York, 2006; https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/search.aspx?queryText=childhood sexual abuse, adult trauma, and psychological distress among mothers of child psychiatric outpatients department of psychiatry 2006
 “Prevalence and psychological sequelae of self-reported childhood physical and sexual abuse in a general population sample of men and women,” John Briere and Diana Elliott, Department of Psychiatry and the Behavioral Sciences, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, 2002, http://johnbriere.com/CAN%20csa%20cpa.pdf