National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

NAASCA Highlights
- Feature Articles -
EDITOR'S NOTE: Here are a few recent stories and feature articles from a variety of sources that are related to the kinds of issues we cover on our web site. They'll represent a small percentage of the information available to us, the public, as we fight to provide meaningful recovery services and help for those who've suffered child abuse. We'll add to and update this page regularly, bringing you just a few of the featured articles on the web site.
programs / projects
together we can heal
help stop child abuse
a little about us
join us, get involved

Feature Story Archives - 2017
presentations from a variety of sources on
issues of child abuse and trauma

Archives from other years:
2011 - 2012 - 2013 - 2014 - 2015 -
- 2016 - 2017 - 2018 - 2019 -


Marci A. Hamilton
  Who Pays for Sex Abuse?

by Marci A. Hamilton (NAASCA family member)

Drawing on data from the extraordinary archive of Catholic sex abuse at, the San Diego Tribune recently published the top 10 sexual abuse settlements by the Catholic Church in the United States. The numbers are large in the aggregate: the church paid $1.553 billion total, with $960.94 million paid to 2,458 survivors. On average, each victim received $391,000 after attorneys' fees.

These numbers are just the tip of the iceberg as many of the victims did not receive full compensatory damages, because the dioceses pooled claims through bankruptcies or other means and avoid individual trials, thereby lowering per-victim recoveries. The cost to the church is actually higher than $1.5 billion, because it has also had to pay for its lawyers (especially for the bishops who take a scorched earth approach against the victims). They also have covered some therapy.

Accordingly, Church costs have been estimated at $4 billion. The victims' expense has not yet been aggregated by social scientists, but it is certainly well beyond $4 billion given that approximately 20-25% of children are sexually abused and the array of negative effects include addiction, alcoholism, depression, PTSD, and eating disorders, among many others.


  NAASCA in the News

(about PTSD - please see the conclusion of the article)

This 1 Disturbing Sign Means Someone Was a Victim of Child Abuse

by Chelena Goldman

August 22, 2017

When on the look-out for signs of child abuse, it's common to look at the individuals when they are, well, children. But what about looking for signs of past abuse in adults? It isn't unheard of for abuse to go unrecorded, only for symptoms and behaviors to manifest in adulthood.

There is one sign, however, that should set off an alarm that someone was a victim of child abuse.


  Out of the shadows - in Massachusetts
Untold Stories of 110 Child Abuse and Neglect Deaths

by the NECIR (New England Center for Investigative Reporting)

Shining light for the first time on the brief lives and deaths of 110 Massachusetts children between 2009 and 2013 — a third of them under the watch of the Department of Children and Families. New data on 2014 fatalities was recently released.

Child abuse and neglect deaths burst into headlines in Massachusetts and across the U.S. with disturbing regularity.

In contrast to widespread news about incomprehensible deaths like “Baby Doe,” whose body washed up in a garbage bag on Deer Island this summer, and Fitchburg preschooler Jeremiah Oliver, who was found wrapped in a blanket along a state highway in 2014, most abuse and neglect victims die with little public notice.

But how many, exactly? And why?


  Child Witnesses to Domestic Violence

In recent years, increased attention has been focused on children who may be affected by violence in the home, either as victims or as witnesses to domestic violence. Research shows that even when children are not direct targets of violence in the home, they can be harmed by witnessing its occurrence.

The witnessing of domestic violence can be auditory, visual, or inferred, including cases in which the child perceives the aftermath of violence, such as physical injuries to family members or damage to property. Children who witness domestic violence can suffer severe emotional and developmental difficulties that are similar to those of children who are direct victims of abuse.

The legal system is beginning to recognize the need to protect and care for these children. Approximately 24 States and Puerto Rico currently address in statute the issue of children who witness domestic violence in their homes.


Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House
- combating child abuse, supporting victims -
  Letter to Speaker Paul Ryan
about bipartisan effort to combat child abuse

by Bill Murray, NAASCA

Last week Speaker of the House Paul Ryan lead off his regular gaggle for reporters with an announcement that caught my attention.

The first item on business was wonderful news to a NAASCA family member's ear:

Speaker Ryan said, “Today, the House is taking up bipartisan action to combat child abuse and exploitation. A report of child abuse is made every 10 seconds in this country. And human trafficking is one of the world's fastest-growing crimes."

That got my attention. After all, the Speaker is the one who sets the agenda for which issues come to the floor to be considered in the House of Representatives.

But ..


Rehabilitation possible?

Child sexual abusers: Can they be fixed?

There's no consensus on whether offenders who commit sex crimes against children can be rehabilitated.

by Lex Talamo

"Shocked" and "scared."

That's how former cop and preschool teacher Jesse Ward described his reaction to stumbling across a child sexual abuse image for the first time in an online network. But instead of repelling him, the image – depicting graphic and violent sexual acts committed on young victims – sent him looking for more.


  When Your Child Is a Psychopath

The condition has long been considered untreatable. Experts can spot it in a child as young as 3 or 4. But a new clinical approach offers hope.


This is a good day, Samantha tells me: 10 on a scale of 10. We're sitting in a conference room at the San Marcos Treatment Center, just south of Austin, Texas, a space that has witnessed countless difficult conversations between troubled children, their worried parents, and clinical therapists. But today promises unalloyed joy. Samantha's mother is visiting from Idaho, as she does every six weeks, which means lunch off campus and an excursion to Target. The girl needs supplies: new jeans, yoga pants, nail polish.


Developmental Trauma Disorder (DTD)
  Development trauma disorder: the effects of child abuse and neglect

by Maureen V. Kilrain, MS, PA-C

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is an article from a professional. It's chock full of technical info and argument that's extremely detailed. A reader may fine referring to the original web page easier to read, from the May 2017 Issue of Clinical Advisor:

Developmental trauma disorder, not yet officially recognized, results from child maltreatment and has many neurobiologic consequences.

  Community Matters !!

EDITOR'S NOTE: I'm happy to offer this article on behalf of Stephanie L. Mann, on both the LA Community Policing ( and Adult Survivor ( web sites. The issues she presents pertain to general public safety and the safety of our children.


Public Safety

Citizen participation can cut inner city crime in half!

by Stephanie L. Mann, Crime and Violence Prevention Consultant

Gun violence devastates family health and safety! We've all heard about violence in Chicago, Baltimore, Ferguson and other cities. Many Americans want more gun control, while others want more police. These are Band-Aid approaches because they don't address root causes. Based on my 39 years as a crime and violence prevention specialist, here are my thoughts on how to make families, neighborhoods and cities safer.


Child porn is often found / distributed on the Dark Web
  NAASCA in the News

Playpen moral dilemma: Is FBI right to erode civil liberties or risk child porn suspects roaming free?

FBI hacked 8,000 computers in 120 countries to catch child porn site visitors – did it overstep the mark?

by Mary-Ann Russon, IBTimes UK

EDITOR'S NOTE: As NAASCA becomes more and more well known, I'm often asked by media to offer a perspective on topics related to issues child abuse and trauma. These requests are solicited from all over the globe. This one's from The United Kingdom.

I expressed my personal position on the recent FBI probe seeking to shut down child pornography web sites. As many know, I've an extensive law enforcement background resulting from being a community-policing advocate for some 25 years .. and was a victim of a lot of pre-pubescent child porn myself, starting at 11 years old. -
Bill Murray, NAASCA / LACP


Flashbacks / PTSD
  13 Steps for Managing Flashbacks

by Pete Walker, M.A.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following article offers some practical advice that many adult survivors of child abuse can use. A lot of us have little problem recalling the traumatic experiences we had as kids. But for many having flashbacks is quite common, and the experience of being 'triggered' (brought on) by any number of stimuli in our lives expresses itself in a variety of ways.

Often survivors will easily recall most of their past but are surprised when previously hidden (or overlooked) memories / thoughts / feelings about childhood pop up.

And quite a few have a sudden, shocking and disorienting set of memories that come rushing back all at once. Many use the term PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) to describe this debilitating phenomenon.

Regardless of how often one has flashbacks the following article contains information with good advice for any one in recovery, even for those who recall ALL their childhood trauma


Vatican Commission on child abuse web site:
  Vatican launches website after child sex abuse scandals

by Delia Gallagher, CNN

Rome (CNN) -- The Vatican has launched a new website detailing its efforts to protect children from sexual abuse by clergy. It's the first time the Vatican is publishing the documents and resources in one place, including an email and phone number to contact its commission for the protection of minors.

The commission was established in 2013 and is headed by Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley.

"It is very important to the Commission that we are as transparent as possible," project coordinator Emer McCarthy told CNN Tuesday. "Our members want people to know that they are doing their level best to carry out the commission of the Holy Father."

"Much of the work of the Commission is listening, study and reflection, so there will not be day-to-day updates, but the website is the vehicle to let people know that we are here," she added.


  Ontario Sex-ed School Curriculum

Prevention Info for Kids

by Bill Murray, NAASCA founder

We were delighted to learn through Mary E Graziano, NAASCA family member and our BLOG manager, that the province of Ontario, Canada, has a plan that improves its sex education programs in schools.

The devil will be in the details, as we still can't tell what materials will be used, but we're happy the explanation below lays out what sorts of issues will be covered in which grades .. and that many of the topics are related to child abuse and trauma prevention.

We thought this would certainly be of interest to our members.

programs / projects
together we can heal
help stop child abuse
a little about us
join us, get involved