More attention needed for sexually abused boys

Child with teddy bear

Boys who fall victim to sexual abuse must receive better help. There is far too little attention for male victims, resulting in them falling off the radar and not getting the help they need, the National Rapporteur on Human Trafficking, national coordination center Comensha, WatchNL and other aid organization committed to helping victims of sexual abuse said to NOS. 

"The figures show that boys are very little in the picture. Yet we do get signals that it is occurring. And so more attention needs to be paid, so that male victims also dare to report more often", a spokesperson for the National Rapporteur on Human Trafficking said to the newspaper. 

According to the center for sexual violence CSG, boys often keep their mouths shut because they are ashamed. "They think that people seem them as weak", Iva Bicanic of the CSG said. Every primary school class in the Netherlands has at least one boy who experienced some form of sexual abuse, she said. "Nevertheless, boys are less likely to be warned of the dangers", she said. "We somehow have the idea that boys can't go through this. Because we think of boys as tough and strong. They can fight it." But that is not true, Bicanic said. It is just as difficult for boys to stand up to abuse as girls.

In order to help sexually abused boys better, a home was created in the northern Netherlands where minor male victims can go, according to NOS. In this home, boys can catch their breath and be treated. This is the first such residence in the Netherlands for boys. A second such home will open somewhere in the west of the country by the end of this year. 


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