PS251, Lec 3, Ex. 3: 10/28/2013
Neglect is a part of every child abuse.
Normal Abuse: neglect and phsycial abuse.
Sexually abused: physically abused and neglect.
Only thing worse is chronic sexual abuse.
Sexual abuse always happens in the context of an already disturbed relationship.
Alters views of relationships … slides
Fits definition of depression, negative views about self, others and the future.
Confusion of tongues: whatever children are given they label it as love. The normal child’s view of
love is very different than a child is neglected or abused. Child who’s sexually abused is confused about the
idea of love.
Regarding the internal experience of the child who is sexually abused:
“(the) child reacts to sudden unpleasure, not by defence (due to weak & undeveloped personality of the
child) but by anxietyridden identification & introjection of the menacing person or aggressor. To maintain
order (where love means abuse, where innocent are guilty, and those you trust hurt you), the child’s psyche
fragments & divides where each fragment behaves as a separate personality not aware of other fragments”
Etiology of DID….the abused child does not know what selfprotection is.
Connects sexual trauma to DID. Each fragment acts on its own. Ex. shattered mirror pieces still all
reflect the same thing. Abused child doesn’t know what protection is. Child has an idea of love that they
either bully or get bullied.
• Thus, the child comes to believe that s/he must “speak” the language of passion the perpetrator
demands in order to get the “love” the child needs
The child is given sexual hate not sexual love.
Endopsychic situation: selfblame. Child assumes that the abuse was a consequence of their own
behavior. Become their own worst enemy. Take positive object relations units and project them into the
world. Internalize everything negative. 5 Basic Psychological Dynamics:
1. Relentless reliving of abusive relationships:
either as a victim or a perpetrator
constantly inviting rejection & punishment in skillful & provocative ways
relationships become impossible from this view (someone is a victim or victimizer)
Look at the relationship templates from Zeanah & Zeanah.
Their chaos makes sense given the craziness that they experienced. 3 option is to be neither of the
2. Identification with aggressor: only real defense they have.
as a defense against internal feelings of fear/weakness: you become the thing that you ultimately avoid.
but by identifying with the aggressor, the child recognizes that s/he has “chosen” to become “bad”. But
they had no choice, they couldn’t avoid it so they think they’re bad. They blame themselves.
therefore, s/he is deserving of anger/judgment s/he feels toward the abuser & now must take it out on the
unshakable conviction of being the cause of the abuse, deserving the abuse, and being utterly bad
*according to Prior (1996) & Berliner (1958), this is the most important treatment
3. Perverse object contact: “perversion is the sexualization of the avoidance of intimacy”. Intimacy
is the desire for comfort in the relationship. You want the connection but also avoid it for the fear of being
abused. Not necessarily bad to seek comfort. But perversion through trauma is sexualizing everything. Go
through a relationship through violence and sexual means.
cruel paradox: the desire to love & be loved causes violence & perversion for the victim of sexual
why sexual abuse is so damaging to the child’s sense of self & other: the child comes to believe that love
explains Sadomasochism: part of paraphilia, sexual disorders. Central motive is finding human
connectedness on the only terms offered.
Person cannot find sexual relief without sadomasochism or extreme fetishes.
this is Ferenczi’s “confusion of tongues”: this is what feels normal to the sexually abused child. They’re
born into that envi