WHEN A CHILD IS SEXUALLY ABUSED, THE LAW CAN PUNISH THE PERPETRATOR. ONLY A CIVIL LAWSUIT CAN HELP PAY FOR TREATMENT
The laws about sexual violence may vary from state to state and country to country, but sexual assault, whether in childhood or adulthood, has numerous potential consequences that can last a lifetime. In fact, the most common effects of sexual abuse in children include:
- symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder
- psychological distress
- inappropriate sexual behavior
- behavior problems
- low self-esteem
- social isolation
- maladjustment in school
- anger and aggression
- body issues
- eating disorders
- later sexual difficulties
- substance abuse
Immediate crisis assistance after sexual assault can prove invaluable, GoodTherapy.org advises, yet most victims will need professional help well into adulthood.
“Receiving the proper care for your mental health condition is essential to your recovery. The best treatments are the ones prescribed by a doctor or mental health practitioner, ”according to Mental Health America. “ Unfortunately, visiting mental health providers and paying for many of these treatments can be expensive. Not all people have access to affordable insurance”.
At the Ramey & Hailey law firm, where we do our part every day to help victims of sexual assault and abuse, we know how very, very hard it is – for both a child victim and for family members to relive the experience by talking about it with law enforcement and even with us.
And since sexual molestation so often comes about not at the hands of a stranger, but through an adult in a position of trust in a child’s or young person’s life – a minister, a teacher, a mentor, coach, advisor, or a relative, that makes it even harder.
In addition, the financial reality is daunting. As personal injury attorneys for more than forty years, we see the enormous challenge facing parents when it comes to paying for the long term treatment their child is going to need.
Remember, when a criminal case is be brought against a parent, teacher, or counselor for sexual abuse of a child, that action punishes the perpetrator and possibly helps deter future crimes. Only a civil lawsuit, however, is meant to – and has the power to – compensate the victim and his or her family, providing the cash needed to cover the extensive, long-term costs of therapy.