Definition of Sexual Abuse
FACT: Most alleged perpetrators of sexual abuse were either "other" relatives (44% of the cases) or non-relatives (29%). Notably, very few substantiated cases involved a stranger (2%) (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, pp.20-211).
FACT: Of sexual assaults on children/youth by their family members reported to Canadian police in 2000, 39% of the perpetrators were parents, 32% were siblings, 28% were members of the extended family, and 1% were spouses (Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, 20022).
FACT: Alleged perpetrators were equally likely to be a biological father or stepfather (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, p.203).
FACT: In 7% of substantiated cases of child sexual abuse, the alleged perpetrators were baby-sitters (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, p.214).
Under the definition of sexual abuse there are two categories: non-contact and contact.
Author's Note: Proper terms are used in the following section.
forced to watch sexual acts
forced to listen to sexual talk, including comments, tapes, and obscene phone calls
sexually explicit material such as videos, DVDs, magazines, photographs, etc.; can be in-person, on the computer via e-mails, and otherwise through the Internet
forced to look at sexual parts of the body--includes buttocks, anus, genital area (vulva, vagina, penis, scrotum), breasts, and mouth
FACT: An adult exposing genitals to a child accounted for 12% of substantiated abuse cases (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, p.135).
sexually intrusive questions or comments; can be verbal, on the computer, or in notes
being touched and fondled in sexual areas, including kissing
FACT: Touching and fondling of the genitals was the most common form of substantiated abuse cases--69% of the cases (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, p.136).
forcing a child or youth to touch another person's sexual areas
forced oral sex--oral sex is when the mouth comes in contact with the penis, the vagina or the anus; many children believe that oral sex is "talking dirty"
forced intercourse--can be vaginally, anally or orally; penetration must occur; penetration can be with body parts and/or objects (the most common body parts used are the fingers, tongue and penis)
FACT: Attempted and completed intercourse accounted for 35% of substantiated abuse cases (Trocme & Wolfe, 2001, p.137).
To my Canadian visitors: The word "rape" is no longer a term used in Canadian law. The Canada Criminal Code now uses the term "Sexual Assault"--it has a broader meaning and encompasses all aspects of the definition of sexual abuse.
For additional legal information, check out definition of sexual abuse
|Sexual Abuse||Sexual Abuse Victims|
|Sexual Abuse Definition||Male Victims|
|Sexual Abuse Signs||Female Victims|
|Sexual Abuse Effects||Victims with Disability|
|Sexual Abuse Statistics||Sexual Abuse Disclosures|
|Abuse Headlines||History of Abuse|
|Sexual Abuse Signs||Child Abuse Stats|
|Sexual Abuse Effects||Emotional Abuse|
|Sexual Abuse Stats||Emotional Abuse Types|
|Sexual Abuse Victims||Emotional Abuse Signs|
|Male Victims||Emotional Abuse Effects|
|Victims w/ Disability||Emotional Abuse Stats|
|Sexual Abuse Disclosures||Physical Abuse|
|Sex Offenders||Physical Abuse Signs|
|Male Sex Offenders||Abuse & Discipline|
|Female Sex Offenders||Physical Abuse Effects|
|Child Sex Offenders||Physical Abuse Stats|
|Adolescent Sex Offenders||Child Neglect|
|Incestuous Sex Offenders||Child Neglect Signs|
|Internet Sex Offenders||Child Neglect Effects|
|Child Abuse Law||Child Neglect Stats|
|Age of Majority||Poverty & Neglect|
|Duty to Report||Sexual Abuse|
|Abuse Intervention||Sexual Abuse Defined|
NOTE: Information pages on this site were based on material from the Canadian Red Cross RespectED Training Program. Written permission was obtained to use their copyrighted material on this site.
1 Trocme, N., & Wolfe, D. (2001). Child maltreatment in Canada: Canadian incidence study of reported child abuse and neglect: Selected results. Ottawa: National Clearinghouse on Family Violence, Health Canada.
2 Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics (2002). Family violence in Canada: A statistical profile 2002. Catalogue no. 85-224-XIE. Ottawa: Government of Canada.
3, 4, 5, 6, 7 Trocme, N., & Wolfe, D. (2001). Child maltreatment in Canada: Canadian incidence study of reported child abuse and neglect: Selected results. Ottawa: National Clearinghouse on Family Violence, Health Canada.