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A victim/survivor is a term used in C.E.A.S.E. materials to refer to someone who has been abused.  At some point in the healing process, persons who have been victimized begin to thrive and identify themselves as survivor.  However, use of the term "Survivor" as a label will not feel satisfying if it is used too soon.  Each person will determine, in their own time, when they have made the transition from victim to survivor.  There does not seem to be a correlation between the label one chooses and the type of abuse, length of the abuse, or other factor.

This term is used to encompass a wide range of boundary violations, including but not limited to:

  • Physical abuse:  Physical maltreatment, injury, or damage to a person
  • Sexual abuse:  Contacts and interactions between a child under 18 and an adult in which the child is being used for sexual stimulation of the perpetrator or another person.  Or, coercive or non-consenting sexual acts between adults, especially when one is in a position to have power over the other, such as minister - church member, teacher - student, therapist - client, or employer - employee.
  • Sexual Harassment:  Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
  • Mental abuse:  Verbal or other behavior causing damage to mental, emotional or spiritual health.

Physical or sexual abuse of a minor MUST be reported to law enforcement or child protective agency.