Sexual Assault Later in Life
“Love begins by taking care of the closest ones – the ones at home”
- Mother Theresa
Sexual Violence against the elders in our community has
often been overlooked, minimized, and ignored. These forgotten victims
are left to live with the emotional and physical scars of this crime all alone.
The services of the Sexual Assault Crisis & Support Center are available
to help those survivors and their families to heal with information and support.
Sexual abuse of the elderly is one of the least reported types of elder
victimization. It is important to listen to and believe someone when they
describe being sexual abused. If you know of someone who has reported
being sexually abused, please seek help from the authorities.*
You can make a difference in the lives of survivors of sexual violence.
*If you suspect an older adult is being sexually abused call your local
Police Department & Adult Protective Services at 1-800-624-8404
Who Commits These Crimes:
In most elder sexual assault cases, the perpetrator is a caregiver or family
member -representing a unique betrayal of trust. The victim often has already
experienced losses of power and control due to dependence on the caregiver.
Many abusers are also dependent on their victims for housing,
transportation and sometimes care.
Types of Sexual Offenses:
There is a broad range of sexual abuses which many older people experience.
oral, anal and vaginal rape, molestation, and sexualized kissing.
sexual harassment and threats, forced pornography viewing,
using older adults to produce pornography, exhibitionism,
and exposing the victim’s body as a form of humiliation.
Signs and Symptoms of Sexual Abuse in an Older Adult
Emotional or Behavioral Signs:
* Sleep disturbances
* Increased Anxiety
* Crying spells
* Sudden avoidance or fear of specific people
* Depressive Assumptions
* Personal Hygiene
* Decreased enjoyment of activities
* Intrusive memories
* Attempts to leave care facilities which they were previously willing to remain
* Genital, anal, throat and oral injuries
* Bruising on breasts, buttocks, thighs, neck and other body area
* Imprint injuries; human bite marks
* Sexually transmitted diseases
* Torn, stained or bloody clothing
* Difficulty walking or sitting
* Sexual Assault Crisis & Support Center 1-800-871-7741 www.silentnomore.org
* Legal Services for the Elderly 1-800-750-5353
* Family Violence Project 1-877-890-7788