Fact or Myth?

Facts

  • 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be the victim of sexual abuse before the age of 18
  • 90% of perpetrators are known to the victim
  • 30-40% of child sexual abuse is perpetrated by a family member
  • There are over 42 million survivors of sexual assault in America

Myths

He looks normal and acts normal, so he can’t be a child molester

Sex offenders know about the importance of their public images, and therefore hide their pedophilic behaviors from the people in their lives.

Only men sexually abuse children

Although men tend to be the majority of perpetrators, women are also capable of child sexual assault.

Child molesters target any and all children nearby

Child offenders carefully choose and groom their particular victims, using unique plans to victimize a particular child alone.

Abused children always tell!

Some reasons children often do not tell because they don’t know what is happening to them, they are afraid of the threats made to them by their abuser on the basis of them telling, or they are ashamed and do not want to disappoint their caregiver.

The victim is always a girl

Boys may also be victims of sexual abuse, but are often taught not to show fear or vulnerability from young ages and therefore do not tell.

Child victims of sexual abuse will have physical signs of abuse

Many acts of abuse do not leave a physical trace, and if they do they heal quickly. The absence of physical evidence does not discredit a child’s disclosure of abuse.

Stranger Danger

The people most likely to abuse a child are the ones with the most opportunity, access and trust.

Sexual victimization as a child will inevitably result in the child growing up to become a sex offender

The stigmatization that a child sexual abuse victim will become sexually aggressive is a harmful misconception.

Child sexual abuse is a cultural or socioeconomic problem

Sexual abuse inhabits all neighborhoods, races and classes. It is not unique to any socio-economic status.

Children cannot assault other children

Children can and do assault other children. Approximately 1/3 of the caseload at the CAC of Bristol County is an older child sexually aggressive against a younger child.

Did You Know?

Since 2007 the CAC of BC has served over 3,200 children and families

Report Suspected Abuse

800-792-5200

Let others know that you and your child are educated about sexual abuse.