Gender Differences in the Disclosure of Sexual Abuse in Chilean Adolescents
Child sexual abuse is a frequent phenomenon in Chile, but it is not often disclosed by its victims. The lack of disclosure is more common in the male population, presumably owing to cultural factors. The objective of this study was to deepen understanding of child sexual abuse disclosure in the Chilean population, focusing particularly on the role of gender. The study combined data extraction from the internal database of child sexual abuse specialist care centres with a small number of in-depth interviews. In the initial quantitative phase, data on 210 adolescents between ten and 18 years of age were reviewed, and in the qualitative phase, ten young people between 18 and 20 years participated; all the participants had suffered sexual abuse. The results of the quantitative phase show that boys actively disclose less frequently than girls. The results of the qualitative analysis revealed some obstacles to disclosure both in boys and in girls (guilt and shame, or the lack of family support), but they suggested that the disclosure process would be particularly difficult for boys owing to cultural factors (e.g. questioning the masculinity of male victims and the feminisation of sexual abuse). The discussion addresses the implications of these results for promoting disclosure in adolescents of both genders. 'Child sexual abuse is a frequent phenomenon in Chile, but it is not often disclosed by its victims' Key Practitioner Messages In Chile, disclosure of sexual abuse is difficult for male and female adolescents owing to guilt and shame, or the lack of family support. In macho cultures, male adolescents would have greater difficulty with disclosure given the associated stigmatisation and gender stereotypes. All practitioners who work with children and adolescents in Chile should be attentive to the gender factors that hinder the disclosure of sexual abuse in male and female adolescents.
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|Gender Differences in the Disclosure of Sexual Abuse in Chilean Adolescents
|Título de la Revista:
|CHILD ABUSE REVIEW
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