Fathers of Sexually Abused Children Suffer

MONTREAL, April 19 (UPI) — Fathers of sexually abused children may struggle with feelings of helplessness but many say they want revenge, researchers in Canada found.

Marie-Alexia Allard of the University of Montreal says preliminary data show the pain fathers feel — including anxiety, depression, grief and desire for vengeance — is uncharted psychological territory.

“Many fathers of sexually abused children want revenge and express the desire to torture their child’s aggressor,” Allard said in a statement. “The most violent reactions arise when the aggressor is the stepfather of the child, the mother’s new boyfriend or her new husband.”

Allard says many of these fathers grieve the death of their child’s innocence.

“Fathers told us they became reluctant to tickle their child or give them a bath fearing that physical contact would remind the child of the aggression,” Allard said.

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