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4.3 out of 5 stars
Abused Boys: The Neglected Victims of Sexual Abuse
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on October 22, 2000
I worked for the Denver District Attorney's Office as part of the Intake Unit. In the five years I was there, Denver filed an average of roughly 5,500 felony cases per year; I reviewed the vast majority of those cases - everything from murder to sexual assault.
After I had been with the office for several years, I read a case involving a young boy who had been sexually assaulted by his twenty year-old uncle. As I reviewed the file, it dawned on me that I had seen very few male-on-male sexual assaults. And of that very small amount, most of the cases were prison rape. During my five year tenure, I remember seeing less than five cases of sexual assaults on boys (either by males or females).
That struck me as odd. Denver saw its share of sexual assaults on children, to the tune of several per week during the summer months [parents: do yourselves and your kids a favor - stay away from water parks; they're hunting grounds], yet 99.9% of the victims were girls. Granted the number of assaults I saw only represented REPORTED assaults, I knew, logically, that the number of male victims had to be significantly higher than what I was seeing. I made a mental note to look into this topic.
That's how I came across this book. I was never a victim of sexual assault, so I thought this book might be a good, academic, supplemental read. I could not have been more wrong. To read this book is to go through a gut wrenching experience - even for somebody who has been privy to the unedited ugly side of human nature as I have. I honestly believe most men, straight or gay, have no concept of what it would be like to be repeatedly forced to have sex with another man. This book explains why male sexual victims rarely come forward: the sense of shame, humiliation, and fear combine with the societal taboos of incest, child molestation and homosexuality.
It is a powerful book.
Dan Lobnitz - University of Denver College of Law (2L)
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on January 13, 2004
This book is a welcome addition to our sparse literature about the sexual abuse of boys. It is well organized, easy to read, and the author is both knowledgeable and sympathetic. He emphasizes that there is no such thing as a "willing" victim and refuses to indulge in victim-blaming, as so often happens to male survivors
However, I strongly discourage survivors from using this book, at least early in their recovery process. The author acknowledges the need for recovery groups to be screened to avoid the inclusion of inappropriate persons in a group, yet failed to do so for his readers and included a story by a survivor/perpetrator. This story is told in the typical detached way of a survivor, and although a young perpetrator, the crimes he commits are among the most heinous in the book. As a female survivor myself, the story resulted in a period of dissociation - something that has not happened to me in 10 years.
Although many perpetrators were themselves victims at one time, these are two very different patient populations and for the sake of fragile survivors the two should not be mixed. I am surprised at the author's lapse in judgment.
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on October 21, 1998
It was very unsettling to read a book with this title and discover I was reading about myself. At the same time, it was quite a relief to hear someone break the silence. The case histories are tragic, yet we need to hear about them so we can learn how to protect our own children. I also recommend Judith Herman's "Trauma and Recovery." Warning: Don't read either of these books if you are a "survivor" of child sexual abuse, unless you are feeling VERY stable.
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on August 7, 2011
this book was a big help for me the matearal i found very helpful most chapters desciped me very well this book is very helpful for any boy or man that was sexualy abused and need some guidance this book does this i only hope that boys and man get help way eary and not wait until there 40 year old i would recomend this to anyone age14 and up
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on August 28, 2000
This is the hardest book I have ever read and I have read some very hard books. This is what makes it so good - it hits home. As a survivor of a pedophilic scoutmaster, I never found much comfort discussing what happened to me and people usually tried to say something for a "bandaid" fix. This book explains why I had the feelings I did and how to overcome them. Much appreciation to the author.
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on May 4, 1999
I read this book to help me gain perspective on my partner's childhood. It clarified for me the problems he is experiencing now, and why I couldn't get him to talk about what happened. Hunter writes clearly, in organized form; discussions of psychological theory are followed up with case histories. The book actively involves the reader with questions and suggestions. I read a library copy and have now bought my own copy.
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