Child sexual abuse based on the crosswise model: a cross-sectional study on 18–24-year-old Iranian students
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Background. Child sexual abuse refers to the compulsory sexual stimulation of a child or adolescent by an adult or older adolescent and includes a wide range of behavior, such as exhibitionism, fondling, sexual intercourse and using children for pornography. Objectives. The present study used the crosswise model to investigate childhood sexual abuse among Iranian university students. Material and methods. This cross-sectional study used a multi-stage method to examine 1,500 subjects in the universities of Shahroud, Iran. The questionnaire consisted of a pair of questions evaluating sexual abuse based on the crosswise approach, one sensitive and the other non-sensitive. To ensure the confidentiality of information, the questionnaire was distributed anonymously among the 1,500 students of 6 universities, and the students’ field of study was not mentioned. The collected data was analyzed with descriptive tests (mean and percent) and inferential tests, (independent t-test, chi-squared and crosswise) using SPSS 18 and STATA software. Results. A total of 11% of the girls and 27% of the boys were found to have suffered a form of sexual abuse. Conclusions. The results indicate a high prevalence of sexual abuse among Iranian children. Evaluating sexual abuse helps health policymakers to focus on parent training through health programs and educational programs in schools
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