>• Does sexual abuse traumatize kids? Courting controversy, Susan A. Clancy, Ph.D., says not exactly.

YOUR THESIS?

Child victims of sexual abuse often don’t feel traumatized at the time. They’re confused; kids don’t understand the sexual nature of what’s happening. And force or violence is rarely used.

AND LATER?

They feel betrayed—how could he do this to me? Ashamed and guilty—why didn’t I say no?

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO DISTINGUISH BETWEEN TRAUMA THEN AND SUFFERING YEARS LATER?

As adults, they feel horrible that they didn’t know enough to say no. Knowing that’s normal can help.

YOU’VE BEEN CALLED A FRIEND OF PEDOPHILES?…

It took me four years to write the book because I was so afraid of the reaction. Sexual abuse is an atrocious, damaging crime. We just need to rethink what’s at the root of that damage.

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