Traumatic Experiences have Disastrous Effects on Native Americans
by hunter_c on April 6, 2016 - 4:51pm
An academic journal entitled, “Childhood Physical and Sexual Abuse and Subsequent Depressive and Anxiety Disorders for Two American Indian Tribe” published by the Psychological Medicine in 2005 reveals the tremendous impact that childhood trauma in Native American communities has on children and the lasting effects it has when they become adults. The researchers studied 3, 084 Native Americans from two different tribes, and the participants were asked about family history, major traumatic events in their lifetime, and they were tested for depression and various anxiety disorders. The results were almost identical for both tribes, childhood physical abuse occurred to approximately 14.87% of the population (about 460 of the participants), and approximately 9.27% of the population experienced sexual abuse (about 280 of the participants) as well evidence of sexual abuse before the age of 16. Furthermore, approximately 18.97% of the population (approximately 586 of the participants) were diagnosed with a depression and a shocking 29.85% were diagnosed with PTSD (approximately 925 of participants). Additionally, 69.32% of participants reporting have financial struggles in their family as children (over 2,000 participants). These traumatic experiences combined with depression often lead to addictive disorders in both men and women in adulthood, as well as risky sexual behaviour. Over 62% of participants reported having some sort of drug/alcohol addiction as adults (over 1,900 participants).
All of this to say, the horrible events that occur to Native American children affect them greatly later on in life and it causes various psychiatric disorders that could have been averted if these things simply hadn’t happened to them. This academic journal is linked to my previous post because it puts things into perspective, and the statistical damage that it causes makes everything seem more “real.” As I’ve mentioned before, there is a large disconnect between the Native American community and the rest of the continent, and reading an article online about something that happened “over there” about one person or one situation just doesn’t hit people. But having knowledge about the tremendous damage that it causes, that it’s happened to literally hundreds of kids, and to be honest it can happen to anyone’s kids, just puts this topic in a different light. It’s not just a couple of people far away, it’s literally thousands of people in our backyard being abused and neglected while everyone turns a blind eye. This study done is proof that the news being reported in not embellished nor untrue, the things happening are very real as well as the consequences and something has to be done about it to prevent further damage. I believe this academic journal will make people take the news more seriously when it comes to Native American abuse, as well as the news summary I wrote on abuse against Native American children.
Libby, Anne M., Heather D. Orton, Douglas K. Novins, Janette Beals, and Spero M. Manson. "Childhood Physical and Sexual Abuse and Subsequent Depressive and Anxiety Disorders for Two American Indian Tribes." Psychological Medicine Psychol. Med. 35.3 (2005): 329-40. Web.