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Background of the Study: There has been an upsurge in child maltreatment, particularly sexual abuse and teen pregnancy [UNICEF 1995]. kid abuse is defined as the intentional or unintentional harm or neglect of a kid by another person, which can be caused by parents, teachers, peers, or any other major person[s] in the child's life [Eya, 2002].

Child abuse, according to Hopper [2004], can be physical, psychological, or sexual. According to Dutton [1994], sexual abuse is any unwanted sexual contact forced on one individual by another.

Oral or vaginal stimulation or penetration, forced nudity, forced exposure to sexually explicit material or action, or any unwelcome activity are all examples of this. This is frequently done or accomplished through compulsion or force, and it can end in a teenage in some situations.

Teenagers are children aged 13 to 19 years old. (Ogbebor, 1994; Lsangedighi, 1996) The effects of sexual abuse and underage pregnancy are severe and have a negative impact on the teen mothers, their babies, and society as a whole. Teen mothers as “babies making babies” have unwanted, emotional, and destructive traumatic sexual experiences, as well as childhood pregnancy experiences and the challenge of parenting their babies alone (Eya, 2002).

According to Wolpe (2004), sexual abuse and exposure to harsh, severe, and scary situations can produce traumatic stress in children and adolescents while also causing significant interpersonal and academic / occupational problems.

Babies born to teen mothers as a result of poverty, on the other hand. Ignorance and secrecy are associated with decreased birth weight. Dutton, 1994. They are also more prone to severe paediatric illnesses, higher newborn mortality, worse medical care, and delayed development.

According to UNICEF (1997), sexual abuse is widespread and happens in a variety of countries around the world. It has not only created a social problem, but it has also taken pregnant girls through the perilous terrain of abortion, abandonment, and dumping.

Because of frustration, shame, and guilt, new born babies are abandoned in gutters, increasing the and infant mortality. Poverty, marital dysfunction, rape, curiosity, child labour, and human trafficking are all variables that contribute to sexual abuse (Hopper 2004).

According to research, marital discord is a major contributory factor to sexual abuse (Eya, 2002). Justin (2004), following Scanoz (1965), defined marital conflict as “disagreement between marital partners over values, beliefs, goals, norms, and behaviour that comprise the structure of the nuclear unit.”

The conflict could be over decision making, child parenting, finance, religion, or power dominance. Many young mothers come from shattered households or homes where there is marital turmoil. Justin, 2004. The purpose of this study is to look into the relationship between marital dysfunction and sexual abuse.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Unfortunately, a history of sexual abuse is fairly frequent. It is believed that one in every three women and one in every seven men was sexually molested as a child. 1996 (UNICEF and FOS). The outcome is a sense of violation, mistrust, lack of control, and ability to function in a healthy relationship. In most cases, past sexual abuse makes it impossible to behave sexually in a healthy way.

Sexual abuse and teen pregnancy are extremely common in Nigeria nowadays. According to Hopper (2004), the problem is that most sexually abused girls do not report to a counsellor, instructors, or even their parents due to secrecy, deep feelings of shame, and a desire to maintain their self-esteem and personality.

Sexual abuse, on the other hand, might manifest as symptoms such as difficulties walking or sitting, stained or bloody pants, vaginal or rectal pain, itching, discharge, and bruising (Triandis, 1983).

Pregnancy symptoms include fatigue, morning sickness, nausea, vomiting, and a bulging stomach. According to the sexual assault survivor services (1996) survey in America, 1/5 to 1/3 of all youths who are participating in dating relationships are frequently abusing and/or being abused by their partners.

verbally, emotionally, sexually, or physically. Mckay (1994) found that children from households where domestic violence occurs are physically or sexually mistreated and neglected at a rate 15 times higher than the national norm. According to Regier and Cowdry (1995), a state agency recorded around 128,000 confirmed occurrences of child sexual abuse in 1992, and it is estimated that one in every five female children has experienced sexual molestation.

kid sexual abuse is heinous and can have a severe, traumatic, and harmful psychological influence on the life of a developing kid or adolescent, tainting the child's future.

Countries and governments have taken action at both the international and national levels to address the issue of child sexual abuse.

In Nigeria, for example, a former vice president's wife has been carrying out a widespread campaign against child labour and human trafficking. She has organised and paid for various workshops and seminars.

advertorials on the plight of our young girls who are trafficked overseas to work as commercial sexual workers.

It is also important to emphasise that, despite all of these efforts, the problem persists; so, this research tries to identify whether marital dysfunction has any relationship with sexual abuse and to suggest counselling ways for dealing with it.

1.3 Objective Of The Study

The goal of this study is to look into marital dysfunction and its relationship to sexual abuse, as well as to suggest counselling ways for dealing with it. The following are the study's particular objectives:

To ascertain whether marital breakdown relates to sexual abuse.

To see if marital dysfunction influences adolescent pregnancy.
Research Issues
The following questions are posed to guide the investigation:

How much does marital discord play a role in sexual abuse?
How does marital dysfunction affect adolescent pregnancy?
Hypothesis of Investigation
To guide the investigation, the following research hypotheses are proposed.

There is no link between parental marital status and susceptibility to sexual abuse.
There is no substantial association between parental marital status and adolescent pregnancy.
The Importance of the Research
This study will be significant to many people and in many ways. To begin, it is hoped that the study will be very useful to the government, both at the state and federal levels, in terms of providing data that will aid the government in developing programmes or carrying out campaigns on the issues of child sexual abuse and the smuggling of young girls to work as commercial workers overseas.

Second, it will be extremely beneficial to religious bodies, socio-cultural organisations, and other organisations interested in establishing moral discipline among parents who are experiencing marital conflict, which leads to marital dysfunction.

Third, the study's findings will inform parents that marital conflict leads to dysfunctional families, and children from dysfunctional homes are vulnerable to child sexual abuse.

Finally, this study will provide data to counsellors to aid in the prevention of sexual abuse and adolescent pregnancy.

Limitations Of The Study
The study is limited to a specific target population of sexually abused and non-sexually abused students in senior secondary two and three students from five (5) secondary schools will be chosen at random in uyo L. G.A. This will be used in the research.

Assumption of the Study
The following assumptions underpin this research:

It is considered that marital dysfunction does not occur in an equitable distribution but rather varies from person to person.
It is widely considered that marital discord contributes to sexual assault.
It is considered that marital discord influences adolescent pregnancy.
Terminology Definition
The following are definitions for terminology used in the study:

Marital dysfunction refers to disagreements between marital partners on values, beliefs, goals, standards, and behaviour that comprise the framework of the nuclear unit (Justin, 2004), quoting (Sconz 1995).
To carry or to be a carrier.

Child sexual abuse is defined as any unwanted sexual intimacy inflicted on a child by another. Oral, anal, or vaginal stimulation or penetration, forced nudity, forced exposure to sexually explicit material or action, or any other unwelcome sexual activity are all examples of this (Dutton, 1994).

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