Child Sexual Abuse

Common Myths

Stranger Danger Scenarios
Most parents have conversations with their children about not accepting candy or rides from strangers or engaging in conversation with people they don’t know. The common belief is that the danger comes from a “stranger,” someone the child has never met or doesn’t know well. In reality, most sexual assaults are committed by someone known to the victimlike a family member, classmate or coworker.

Children Will Always Speak Up
Adults often think that children will speak up if they are being abused. In actuality, children are less likely disclosure this information for a variety of reasons: fear of not being taken seriously, thinking the assault was their fault or being threatened by the perpetrator.

Statutory Rape Isn’t Real Rape
The power dynamics between adults and childreneven between adults and teenagersis significant. Sexual violence takes advantage of that power differential.

Children Seduce Adults
Culture often supports and jokes about “jail bait” or the “Lolita” effect: the notion that some girls are sexually precocious and deliberately entice adult men to be sexual with them. In reality, adults have the power over children and are to be held responsible. Additionally, boys who are sexually assaulted by adult females are viewed by society as “lucky” and praised for “scoring” with older women. This is a harmful aspect of rape culture. These cases often get mislabeled as “inappropriate sexual relationships” to downplay their severity, but they should be called what they are: sexual assault and abuse.

Prevention and Awareness in Connecticut Schools

The Department of Children and Families, State Department of Education and Connecticut Alliance to End Sexual Violence worked together to develop a comprehensive statewide sexual assault and abuse prevention and awareness plan to be implemented in all local and regional school districts in Connecticut.

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