Examination of parents' attitudes toward and efforts to discuss child sexual abuse prevention with their children.

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Date: Feb. 2021
Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
Document Type: Report; Brief article
Length: 401 words

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Abstract :

Keywords Child sexual abuse prevention; Parents; Parent--child sexuality communication; Sexual abuse Highlights * Parents lack access to child sexual abuse (CSA) prevention programs. * Parents desire more developmentally appropriate information regarding CSA from trusted sources. * Child's gender and marital status of a parent impact the focus of CSA discussions. * White/Non-Latinx parents are more educated about sexual abuse compared to Latinx parents. * Social stigma toward sexuality and CSA affects parents' confidence and evokes shame. Abstract Prevention efforts for child sexual abuse (CSA) have focused on programming for children through schools while few parent-based programs are available in the community. Research over the past few decades show that parents lack access to such programs and aren't actively discussing CSA concepts with their children and continue to possess incorrect knowledge about risks. This study aims to analyzing parents' attitudes toward CSA, and their engagement in discussions about CSA with children. Three hundred and two parents (90% mothers) across the US completed an online survey. This study employed an explanatory mixed methods research design. Descriptive data analysis focused on exploring the relationships between socio-demographic characteristics, knowledge about sexual abuse prevention, and communication about sexual abuse prevention. While most parents (64%) engaged in such discussions, they still desired more information from trusted sources and needed developmentally appropriate materials. Parents reported the need for education through courses, trainings, and/or support groups. The prevention concepts parents talked to their children about differed based on the gender of the child, as well as the marital status of the parent. Single parents discussed less CSA concepts than married. White/Non-Hispanic parents were more educated about sexual abuse compared to Hispanic/Latino parents and talked to their children more about prevention concepts. Parents also discussed CSA with girls more compared to boys. The majority of parents are discussing CSA and have adequate knowledge about prevention concepts, but still desire more assistance from experts. Some parents are in need of more assistance in conducting CSA discussions with their children. Author Affiliation: Department of Counseling, Recreation and School Psychology, College of Arts, Sciences and Education, Florida International University, United States * Corresponding author at: Department of Counseling, Recreation and School Psychology, College of Arts, Sciences and Education, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th Street, Miami, FL 33199, United States. Article History: Received 19 August 2020; Revised 2 December 2020; Accepted 3 December 2020 Byline: Alena Prikhidko [aprikhid@fiu.edu] (*), Maureen C. Kenny [kennym@fiu.edu]

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A651107871