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By Lisa A Fontes

The impression of tradition on sexual abuse concerns is just commencing to be understood. In minority populations, sexual abuse should be ignored - or survivors will be inappropriately handled - due to cultural or linguistic misunderstandings, racism or homophobia. This quantity includes culture-specific chapters that ponder ways that cultural norms can be utilized to guard young ones and advertise therapeutic from sexual abuse.

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Example text

Ho (1992b) points out, “In adjusting to the victim system and adversity, Black Americans have developed great tolerance for conflict, stress, ambiguity, and ambivalence” (p. 78). African American women are particularly noted for their strength. Out of the myth of the “Black matriarchy” has come the belief that “Black women can handle it”: Black women are strong and can handle anything life throws at them-whether rape at the hands of white slaveowners; the trauma of being separated from their children in slavery; racism; violence against us within our communities; or sexual abuse.

First, African American mothers may be less fearful of the male perpetrators because many of these men did not reside in the home or were not the fathers of the children. Second, the African American children had closer relationships to their mothers resulting from a more supportive motherkhild dyad. 20 SEXUAL ABUSE IN NINE NORTH AMERICAN CULTURES Reporting of sexual abuse by African Americans is further complicated by the realization that a significant number of African Americans have experienced negative encounters with the police, criminal justice system, and/or social service agencies, which impedes the reporting of child sexual victimization.

Family physicians or family and friends (Neighbors & Taylor, 1985) are also resources for help. The reluctance to turn to mental health and social service professionals stems from a lack of trust in services that in the past were offered almost always by Whites, a belief that one does not air dirty laundry in public, and a lack of such services in the African American community. Consequently, African Americans do not use mental health services at rates comparable to European Americans. Moreover, African Americans seeking public mental health services are receiving inadequate services, evidenced by a dropout rate of 50% after one session (D.

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