SIGNS OF SEXUAL ABUSE
People who sexually abuse children rely on secrecy to make sure their abuse isn’t discovered. There are warning signs however.
Noticing one sign doesn’t necessarily mean that a child was sexually abused, but the presence of several of these warning signs suggests that you begin asking questions and consider seeking help:
- Has difficulty walking or sitting
- Experiences bleeding, bruising, or swelling in their private parts
- Suddenly refuses to go to school
- Reports nightmares or bedwetting
- Experiences a sudden change in appetite
- Demonstrates bizarre, sophisticated, or unusual sexual knowledge or behavior
- Becomes pregnant or contracts a sexually transmitted disease, particularly if under age 14
- Runs away
- Reports sexual abuse by a parent or another adult caregiver
- Attaches very quickly to strangers or new adults in their environment
Learn more about the warning signs of child sexual abuse from RAINN.