Sexual Abuse

Q: What is Sexual Abuse?

A: Abuse can be defined as: use to bad effect or for a bad purpose; treat with cruelty or violence; assault sexually; address in an insulting and offensive way. Sexual abuse refers to any action that pressures or coerces someone to do something sexually they don't want to do.[1]


Q: How prevalent is sexual abuse among children

A: According to a 2003 National Institute of Justice report, 3 out of 4 adolescents who have been sexually assaulted were victimized by someone they knew well.[2]


Q:  What percent of American girls have been sexually abused?

A: The National Center for Victims of Crime (2000) shows that 33% of girls (1 out of 3) are sexually abused before the age of 18.[3] 


Q:  What percent of American boys have been sexually abused?

A:  16% of boys (roughly 1 out of 6) are sexually abused before the age of 18.[4]


Q:  What impact does marriage disharmony in divorce have on child sexual abuse?

A:  Children who do not live with both parents as well as children living in homes marked by parental discord, divorce, or domestic violence, have a higher risk of being sexually abused.[5]


Q:  What are warning signs in children who may have been sexually abused?

A: The following behavior/s may be seen in a child or adolescent:

  • Has nightmares or other sleep problems without an explanation
  • Seems distracted or distant at odd times
  • Has a sudden change in eating habits
  • Sudden mood swings: rage, fear, insecurity, or withdrawal
  • Leaves “clues” that seem likely to provoke a discussion about sexual issues
  • Develops new or unusual fear of certain people or places
  • Refuses to talk about a secret shared with an adult or older child
  • Writes, draws, plays, or dreams of sexual or frightening images
  • Talks about a new older friend
  • Suddenly has money, toys, or other gifts without reason
  • Thinks of self or body as repulsive, dirty, or bad
  • Exhibits adult-like sexual behaviors, language, and knowledge

[1] Author’s name not available, “What Is Sexual Abuse?” Love Is Respect. Love Is Respect, No Publish Date, (Accessed January 22, 2015).

[2] Author’s name not available, National Center for Victim’s of Crime,​. (Accessed January 22, 2015).

[3] Jon Holsten, “Talking to Your Kid’s About Sexual Abuse,” Focus on the Family. Focus on the Family, 2005, (Accessed January 22, 2015).

[4] Holsten, “Talking to Your Kid’s about Sexual Abuse,” (Accessed January 22, 2015).

[5] Author’s name not available, National Center for Victim’s of Crime, (Accessed January 22, 2015).

Deuteronomy 24:7 If a man is found kidnapping any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and mistreats him or sells him, then that kidnapper shall die; and you shall put away the evil from among you.


Leviticus 18:6, 9-11, 17 None of you shall approach to any that is near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the LORD…The nakedness of thy sister, the daughter of thy father, or daughter of thy mother, whether she be born at home, or born abroad, even their nakedness thou shalt not uncover…The nakedness of thy son's daughter, or of thy daughter's daughter, even their nakedness thou shalt not uncover: for theirs is thine own nakedness…The nakedness of thy father's wife's daughter, begotten of thy father, she is thy sister, thou shalt not uncover her nakedness…Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter, neither shalt thou take her son's daughter, or her daughter's daughter, to uncover her nakedness; for they are her near kinswomen: it is wickedness.


Romans 12:19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.