Child Abuse and Molestation
Child sexual abuse is any sexual act performed with a child by an adult or older child, with or without force or the threat of force. Child sexual abuse is most commonly committed by someone known to the child, including family members.
Incest is overt and/or covert sexual contact or acts between people who are related genetically, by marriage, by living arrangements, or in whom a child perceives a trusting relationship, for example parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, step-parents, foster parents.
Incest is one of the most common forms of child sexual abuse. It may start as seemingly innocent touching and progress to more serious acts. It can continue for years. Other individuals who may commit child sexual abuse include neighbors, family friends, baby sitters, religious leaders, youth group leaders, or others with a power advantage of any kind over the child. Child sexual abuse may also be committed by a stranger.
If you know someone who was sexually abused as a child or if you think a child you know is being sexually abused call The Center’s 24 hour helpline to talk to a counselor.
Taken from: “Child Sexual Abuse.” 2009. http://www.rainn.org/get-information/types-of-sexual-assault/child-sexual-abuse