(Based on Wallace, 2008)
· Sudden fear for no obvious reason, especially that of a certain person.
· Inability to trust. This is due to the feeling of helplessness. Also often affects future relationships.
· Anger and hostility. The child is rarely able to express their anger toward his or her perpetrator and often displaces onto others. Though in a few cases ( usually when the perpetrator is extrafamilial), the child may find the opportunity to unleash his or her anger to the perpetrator.
· Inappropriate sexual behavior. The child may attempt to show or tell others what has occurred to him or her by acting it out.
· Depression. Another reason to learn the symptoms of clinical depression (I have listed some in my other articles about depression and there are also various other sources).
· Guilt or shame. By nature, young children are egocentric and tend to mistakenly think they are responsible for other people’s actions toward them.
· School-related problems. A sudden drop in school performance can be a factor in many things and sexual abuse is one of them.
· Somatic complaints. Resulting from internalization of the trauma, these children may demonstrate various somatic disorders (ex. Stomachaches that have no physical cause)
· Difficulty with sleeping. Children who have been sexually abused may have nightmares, night terrors or be afraid to sleep alone.
· Eating disorders. Some survivors have been known to develop eating habits which can come in the forms of anorexia and/or bulimia; a sudden increase or decrease of appetite and/or hoarding food.
· Phobic or avoidant behavior. This can be in any form from agoraphobia (fear of open spaces) to fear of people who even slightly resemble his or her perpetrator(s).
· Regressive behaviors. Child survivors have been known to regress to acting younger than their chronological ages.
· Self-destructive behavior. These may be outlets for the child’s feelings of guilt and/or shame.
· Running away. This could be another form of attempting to process the trauma.
TAALK.org, has also strongly suggested that candidates applying for jobs in the education department be carefully screened out for possibility of gaining access to children in a sexual way. These candidates should also be carefully checked for whether he or she is a registered Sex Offender. When sex offenders take up residence in a new state, they often neglect to register in the new state.