Child Statistics

    • 1 in 4 girls is sexually abused before the age of 14.1
    • 1 in 6 boys is sexually abused before the age of 16.2
    • Teens between the ages of 16 and 19 are 3.5 times more likely to be sexually abused than the general population.3
    • More than 90% of all sexual abuse victims know their perpetrator.  Almost 50% of the offenders are household members and 38% are already acquaintances of the victims.4
    • The median age for reporting sexual abuse is 9.9 for boys and 9.6 for girls.5
    • For 22% of the boys and 23% of the girls, sexual abuse occurred before the age of 8.6
    • 42% of women and 33% of men never tell of their abuse.7
    • Only 1 in 10 children tell of their abuses.8
    • 22% of all children who disclose sexual abuse eventually recant even though the abuse occurred.9
    • Fabricated sexual abuse reports constitute only 1% – 4% of all reported cases.  Of these reports, 75% are falsely accused by adults and 25% are reported by children.  Children fabricate 1-2% of the time.10
    • Twenty-nine percent of all forcible rapes in America occurred when the victim was less than 11 years old.11

1, 2 Hopper, J. Child Sexual Abuse: Statistics, Research, Resources.  Boston, MA Boston University School of Medicine: 1998
3 US Department of Justice. Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Crime Victimization Survey, Washington, D.C: 1996
4 Finkelhor and Ormond: 2001
5, 6, 7 Finkelhor & David, et al. Sexual Abuse in a National Survey of Adult Men and Women: Prevalence, Characteristics and Risk Factors: 1990
8 Janssen, M.R. Incest: Exploited Child Abuse.  National Victim Center: 1991
9 Sorenson, T. and Snow, B. How Children Tell: The Process of Disclosure in Child Sexual Abuse. Child Welfare League of America: 19919
10 National Victim Center Handbook: 1991
11 National Victim Center and Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center, Rape in America: A Report to the Nation: 1992