Childhood abuse

There are different forms of childhood abuse which can include emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. Many people can experience more than one form of childhood abuse.

It is believed that one in four adults have experienced some form of abuse as a child. The support of friends, family and the network around you may aid your recovery but for other survivors the opportunity to talk to a professional who is independent can be very beneficial.

Abusers often carry out their acts because they want control or power over another person. Whether currently experiencing abuse or if you experienced abuse in the past it can be hard to know where to go for help or who to talk to. Our team can help find the right support for your needs.

Here at the Victim Care Service we provide free, independent support tailored to you. You can start support with us by getting in contact with one of our trained supporters about anything that is happening to you now or happened in the past here.

Boy sat on a curb with his head in his hands

Your emotional response to child abuse

Everyone is different and there is no right or wrong way to feel after experiencing crime. Support is available whether you have reported the abuse, not told anybody or only recently opened up about being abused. It is possible that traumatic memories can be triggered out of the blue and this can be difficult to process and deal with. Not all victims will experience mental health difficulties after childhood abuse, but some of the symptoms that people carry through to adulthood can be:

  • Depression;
  • Anxiety;
  • Sleep disorder;
  • Self-harm;
  • Suicidal thoughts; and
  • Post-traumatic stress.

Your physical health may be impacted by childhood abuse. If you find it more difficult to go to your GP, hospital or a dentist, or take part in physical examinations; this isn’t uncommon.

What can I do if I’m impacted by childhood abuse?

Dealing with childhood abuse alone is can be difficult. Our teams are equipped with the knowledge to help find the right support for you. Our trained caseworkers will listen to you and create a plan to help you cope and recover to move on with your life. We think everyone who has experienced childhood abuse deserves to get the support and help they need. This extends to anyone who has been abused, regardless of whether it was recent or many years ago.