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Short Title

dysfunctional family, adolescent females, sexual abuse, alcohol, South Africa

Abstract

Owing to fear to report abuse to significant others (e.g. educators), research highlighted that abused female youth tend to be submissive and experience impaired self- acceptance and negative relationships with others. The aim of the study was to investigate the circumstances under which sexually abused adolescent females engage in risk-taking activities. The research used a qualitative method to collect data from 8 purposively sampled participants (aged 15-18 years) from one secondary school in Eastern Cape, South Africa. Results indicated that sexually abused youth are susceptible to neuroticism and substance abuse. In recommendation, the community should be pro-active in ending abuse.

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