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Common Symptoms in Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse

December 12, 2011

The Manifestation of Childhood Sexual Abuse can come out in many ways some you may not expect.
Common Symptoms in Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse

Physical Symptoms:

  • Pseudocyesis (false pregnancy)
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Asthma, respiratory ailments
  • Chronic headache
  • Chronic back pain
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms/distress
  • Musculoskeletal complaints
  • Obesity, eating disorders
  • Insomnia, sleep disorders
  • Alcohol or drug abuse

Psychologic and Behavioral Presentations

  • Depression and anxiety
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms
  • Dissociative states
  • Repeated self-injury
  • Suicide attempts
  • Lying, stealing, truancy, running away
  • Compulsive sexual behaviors
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Somatizing disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Poor adherence to medical recommendations
  • In Ability to maintain romantic relationships
  • Constant search for intimacy
  • Expectation of early death
  • Inability to hold a job
  • Guilt, feelings that it was your fault
  • Anger (toward yourself, your abuser, others who should have known or stopped the abuse)
  • Self-hatred, self-blame
  • Criminal behavior, self-destructive behavior
  • Isolation
  • Anxiety
  • Flashbacks, repressing memories, post-traumatic stress

Although there is no single syndrome that is universally present in adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse, there is an extensive body of research that documents adverse short- and long-term effects of such abuse. We’ve helped hundreds of victims of childhood sex abuse. Over the years, we’ve come to recognize the telltale signs. The trauma of childhood sex abuse can leave emotional scars that last for years after the abuse has ended. If someone you know needs help, you can contact us:

Toll free: 855-529-4274
Tim Kosnoff, direct: 425-837-9690
Dan Fasy, direct: 206-462-4338
Kosnoff Fasy, Seattle office: 206-257-3590

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