The MOSAC site is designed specifically for mothers who have experienced the sexual abuse of one of their children. Although fathers also suffer when a child is the victim of sexual abuse, women and mothers have specific issues related to their role and relationship to the victim. Most mothers say that they need and want help following the disclosure of a child's abuse. This site is designed to be a comprehensive source of information about sexual abuse and to offer support and resources to mothers.

Disclosure of a child's sexual abuse is a traumatic event for mothers. Life is difficult and stressful, and mothers experience many painful emotions. They are worried about their children and are concerned about the effects and long-term consequences of the sexual abuse. They may have been involved with the report of abuse. Following the disclosure, they are usually involved with community agencies, including law enforcement, social services, child abuse assessment centers, and the court system. Mothers experience strong emotions, initially feeling shock and denial, and often going through a grief process that includes anger, intense pain, and confusion. Mothers are afraid and anxious and often show signs of posttraumatic stress. If the perpetrator is a husband, partner, other family member, or friend, mothers experience feelings of betrayal.

Mothers often have no one around them that understands what they are going through, and they may have very little support. Sometimes mothers are blamed by others and told that the abuse is their fault. They are often given harmful advice and told not to believe the child or not to report. If the perpetrator is the mother's partner or one of her other children, feelings of pain, anger, and confusion increase. Difficult decisions are required in order to protect children. If the perpetrator is a husband, partner, other family member, or friend, mothers experience feelings of betrayal. It may be far easier to accept that a stranger has abused your child, even though a devastating discovery, than to find out that someone you loved and trusted harmed your child.

The goal of the MOSAC site is to be comprehensive, providing as much information as possible to mothers following disclosure. The author of this site hopes that mothers obtain support and help from the suggested resources.

See Notes on Language used on the site.

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