What Is Force?
Force doesn’t always refer to physical pressure. A perpetrator may use emotional coercion, psychological force, or manipulation to coerce a victim into non-consensual sex. Some perpetrators will use threats to force a victim to comply such as threatening to hurt the victim or their family or other intimidation tactics.3
Sexual contact or behavior that occurs without explicit consent of the victim.
- Forced sexual intercourse
- Forced sodomy
- Child molestation
- Attempted rape1
Signs and Symptoms of Sexual Assault
Childhood Sexual Abuse:
The employment, use, persuasion, inducement, enticement, or coercion of any child to engage in, or assist any other person to engage in, any sexually explicit conduct or simulations of such conduct for the purpose of producing a visual depiction of such conduct; or the rape, and in cases of caretaker or interfamilial relationships, statutory rape, molestation, prostitution, or other form of sexual exploitation of children, or incest with children.2
- Fondling a child’s genitals
- Having intercourse with a child
- Having oral sex with a child
- Having sex in front of a child
- Having a child touch an older person’s genitals
- Showing x-rated books or graphics to a child
- Using a child in pornography
Signs and Symptoms of Childhood Sexual Abuse
- Difficulty walking or sitting
- Bloody, torn, or stained underclothes
- Bleeding, bruises, or swelling in genital area
- Pain, itching, or burning in genital area
- Frequent urinary or yeast infections
- Shrinks away or seems threatened by physical contact
- Exhibits signs of depression or post-traumatic stress disorder
- Expresses suicidal thoughts, especially in adolescents
- Develops phobias
- Has trouble in school, such as absences or drops in grades
- Changes in hygiene, such as refusing to bathe or bathing excessively
- Returns to regressive behaviors, such as thumb sucking
- Runs away from home or school
- Overly protective and concerned for siblings, or assumes a caretaker role
- Nightmares or bed-wetting
- Inappropriate sexual knowledge or behaviors3
If you suspect a child is being abused, see instructions on how to proceed here or call 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
The above list of the signs and symptoms of childhood sexual assault/abuse is not comprehensive. For more information and a more comprehensive list of the signs and symptoms, click here.
Statistics on Sexual Assault / Sexual Abuse
- There is an average of 293,066 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year, which equates to an american being sexually assaulted every 107 seconds.
- Sexual assault is one of the most under-reported crimes, with 68% still being left unreported. Factoring in unreported rapes, only about 2% of rapists will ever serve a day in prison.
- 1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime (14.8% completed rape; 2.8% attempted rape).
- About 3% of American men — or 1 in 33 — have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime.
- 15% of sexual assault and rape victims are under age 12.
- 29% are age 12-17.
- 44% are under age 18.
- 80% are under age 30.
- 12-34 are the highest risk years.
- Girls ages 16-19 are 4 times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault.
- 7% of girls in grades 5-8 and 12% of girls in grades 9-12 said they had been sexually abused.
- 3% of boys grades 5-8 and 5% of boys in grades 9-12 said they had been sexually abused.
- 82% of all juvenile victims are female.
- The year in a male’s life when he is most likely to be the victim of a sexual assault is age 4. A female’s year of greatest risk is age 14.
- 93% of juvenile sexual assault victims know their attacker.
- 34.2% of attackers were family members.
- 58.7% were acquaintances.
- Only 7% of the perpetrators were strangers to the victim.
- For 80% of juvenile victims, the perpetrator was a parent. 6% were other relatives. 4% were unmarried partners of a parent. 5% were “other” (from siblings to strangers).
Victims of sexual assault are:
- 3 times more likely to suffer from depression.
- 6 times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.
- 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol.
- 26 times more likely to abuse drugs.
- 4 times more likely to contemplate suicide.
The above list of statistics on sexual abuse and assault is not comprehensive. The list was taken from RAINN and can be found here.
- Retrieved from http://www.justice.gov/ovw/sexual-assault
- Retrieved from https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/define.pdf
- Retrieved from https://www.rainn.org/get-information/types-of-sexual-assault/sexual-assault