Understanding Trauma & Violence


When I was in kindergarten, a friend asked me to play a game that she said her parents taught her to play only with people she loves. The game involved inappropriate sexual acts. I felt confused and uncomfortable, but I participated. Years later, I'm unsure if this would be considered child-on-child sexual abuse (COCSA) and I don't know how to process these memories, especially given that my friend said her parents taught her the game.


Thank you for sharing your experience. What you've described sounds like a confusing and distressing situation that has understandably left you with difficult feelings and questions. 

While the exact definition of child-on-child sexual abuse (COCSA) can vary, it generally refers to sexual activity between children that occurs without consent, without equality, or as a result of coercion. The fact that your friend said her parents taught her this "game" to play with loved ones raises serious concerns and suggests she may have been a victim of abuse herself.

It's important to remember that as a child, you were not responsible for what happened. Children cannot truly consent to sexual acts, especially when they are coerced, manipulated or do not fully understand what is happening. Your feelings of confusion and discomfort are valid.

Processing memories like these can be painful and overwhelming. It may be helpful to explore these experiences with a therapist who specializes in working with survivors of childhood sexual abuse. They can provide a safe, non-judgmental space to work through your emotions and memories. 

Only you can define your experiences, but your confusion surrounding the situation is completely reasonable. Remember that you are not alone and what happened was not your fault. In time, healing is possible. Thank you again for trusting us with your story.

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