Memory, repression, and child sexual abuse: forensic implications for the mental health professional.J Am Acad Psychiatry Law. 1997; 25(1):31-47.JA
Childhood sexual abuse is prevalent in our society today. Over the last 30 years, mental health professionals have become increasingly involved in the assessment and treatment of adults who were sexually abused as children. The emergence of the phenomenon of recovered memories has divided both families and mental health professionals. The current debate over repressed memory as well as the prominent theories in this area are discussed. Recent legal developments of repressed memory litigation are discussed along with examples of legal cases that are most relevant to mental health professionals today.