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Encyclopedia > Sexual abuse

Sexual abuse (also referred to as molestation) is defined as the forcing of undesired sexual acts by one person to another. The term incest is defined as sexual abuse between family members, and the euphemism "bad touch" is sometimes used to describe such abuse. (Renvoizé 1982) The Bad Touch is the first single by The Bloodhound Gang off their 1999 album Hooray for Boobies. ... Incest is defined as sexual intercourse between closely related persons. ...

Different types of sexual abuse involve:


Sexual assault is any physical contact of a sexual nature without voluntary consent. ... Stalking (from Middle English stalk: from Old English bestealcian; akin to Old English stelan to steal) is a legal term for repeated harassment or other forms of invasion of a persons privacy in a manner that causes fear to its target. ... Position of trust is a legal term used in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and perhaps other countries. ...

Signs of sexual abuse

  • Unexplained injuries (especially to parts of the female body that can be covered by a two-piece swimsuit)
  • Torn or stained clothing or underwear
  • Pregnancy
  • Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
  • Unexplained behavioral problems
  • Depression
  • Self abuse and/or suicidal behavior
  • Drug and/or alcohol abuse
  • Sudden loss of interest in sexual activity
  • Sudden increase of sexual behavior

Spousal sexual abuse

Main article: Spousal abuse

Spousal abuse is the term applied to the specific form of domestic violence, where physical or sexual abuse is perpetrated by one spouse upon another. Frequently this involves forced sex (spousal rape) upon a spouse without their consent. [1] Spousal abuse refers to a wide spectrum of abuse. ... “Domestic disturbance” redirects here. ... Physical abuse is abuse involving contact intended to cause pain, injury, or other physical suffering or harm. ...

Sexual abuse of minors

Main article: Child sexual abuse

In the majority of cultures and countries, sex is legal and acceptable only if both parties give consent. Child sexual abuse is an umbrella term describing criminal and civil offenses in which an adult engages in sexual activity with a minor or exploits a minor for the purpose of sexual gratification. ... In the criminal law, consent may be an excuse and prevent the defendant from incurring liability for what was done. ...

The age of consent, that is, the age at which the law presumes a person has the physical, emotional and sexual maturity to make an informed adult decision to enter into sexual activity, differs from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, from early teens in Italy and Spain to mid and late teens elsewhere (for example, 16 in the United Kingdom and 17 in Ireland). Some states also provide different ages of consent for homosexual boys than heterosexual boys and girls. Yet separately the law may specify a different age where a teenager ceases to be a child and becomes an adult. As a result, where a difference exists, it may be perfectly legal to have sex with a child where the individual, though still deemed a child in law, is above the age of consent specified in local legislation. In most cases, the age of consent and statutory rape laws aim at protecting children and teenagers from exploitation, particularly physical or psychological exploitation involving sexual behavior. Exploitation means many different things. ...

Sexual misconduct by teachers is common in American schools according to a recent report. [1]


Renvoizé, Jean (1982). Incest: A Family Pattern, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. ISBN 0-71009-073-0.

Sorenson,Susan B. (1997). Violence and Sexual Abuse at Home: Current Issues in Spousal Battering and Child Maltreatment, New York: Haworth Press. ISBN 1-56024-681-2.

Further reading

  • Bass, Ellen and Laura Davis, 1988 (3rd ed. 1994). The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse. Harper Collins Publishers.
  • Aba, C. (1992). Sexual Assaults on Students. London: Harper and Row.
  • Billie Wright Dzeich and Linda Weiner, 1984 (2nd ed. 1990). The Lecherous Professor: Sexual Harassment on Campus. Boston: Beacon Press.
  • Doris Van Stone, (1990). No Place to Cry: The Hurt and Healing of Sexual Abuse. Moody Publishers.
  • Wishart, G.D. (2003) The Sexual Abuse of People with Learning Difficulties: Do We Need A Social Model Approach To Vulnerability?, Journal of Adult Protection, Volume 5 (Issue 3)

External links

  Results from FactBites:
eMedicine - Pediatrics, Child Sexual Abuse : Article by Ann S Botash, MD (4536 words)
Pathophysiology: Child sexual abuse has been defined by the American Academy of Pediatrics as the engaging of a child in sexual activities that the child cannot comprehend, for which the child is developmentally unprepared and cannot give informed consent, and violate the social taboos of society.
Sexual activities involving a child may include activities intended for sexual stimulation, such as those involved in contact sexual abuse (eg, touching the child's genitalia or the child's touching an adult's genitalia), penetrating injury (eg, penile, digital, and object insertion into the vagina, mouth, or anus), and nonpenetrating injury (eg, fondling, sexual kissing).
Whether the allegations of abuse are true or not, children involved in sexual abuse allegations must be considered to be victimized.
Sexual abuse - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (654 words)
Sexual abuse is a relative cultural term used to describe sexual relations and behavior between two or more parties which are considered criminally and/or morally offensive.
Spousal abuse is the term applied to the specific form of domestic violence, where physical or sexual abuse is perpetrated by one spouse upon another.
Even if the sexual contact is consented to (or even initiated) by the student, it may be considered a form of abuse on the presumption that the teacher or professor is apt to exploit his or her position of authority in a subtle form of psychological coercion.
  More results at FactBites »



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