According to the Miami Herald, anywhere from 361,923 and 596,458 children in Florida have been victimized by sexual abuse or will become victims of child sexual abuse before turning 18. Between nine and 15 percent of the current child population in the state will be abused sexually before reaching adulthood. Many of these children will experience lingering consequences, including the development of addictions.
Children who are victims of sexual abuse before age 18 are more likely to abuse drugs at younger ages. According to Darkness to Light, adolescents who suffered child sexual abuse as kids are between three and four times as likely to become dependent upon alcohol or other substances, including illegal narcotics.
Substance abuse problems can continue into adulthood for child sex abuse victims. Male adults who were victims of child sexual abuse are 2.6 times as likely to have substance abuse problems in adulthood. Female survivors of child sex abuse are three times as likely to have substance abuse problems as adults.
Substance abuse and addiction to gambling can impact a person’s life in profound ways. Rehabilitation and therapeutic treatment may be necessary, but can be costly. Victims of sex abuse and their families need to explore whether a civil case could result in compensation that makes it possible for victims to get the help they need. Civil claims could be filed against institutions responsible for facilitating the abuse.
A Florida child sex abuse lawyer can provide assistance in determining if a case could be made against a church, school or other group or organization which made the abuse possible through its negligence.