Inspiring Compassion

Forms of Abuse

Sexual Abuse of Children

Sexual abuse of children covers a wide variety of activities, from the seemingly innocent to the blatantly obvious and damaging. Intent is the key. To be defined as sexual abuse of children, there must be an intention to create sexual arousal or gratification. This must not be confounded with normal endearments or signs of affection, which may also include body contact as in hugging and cuddling. Child pornography is evidence of a sexual crime committed to a child, why consumption of child pornography for sexual gratification is equal to abuse.

Contact Abuse:

  • Inappropriately touching the child with sexual intention (such as groping and fondling)
  • Having the child masturbate another person
  • Sexually penetrating the child (inserting objects into a child’s vagina or anus or inserting a sexual device into a child’s mouth)
  • Raping the child (vaginal sex, anal sex and oral sex)
  • Using the child as a pornographic object (such as taking pictures and videos of sexual activities with children)


  • Performing sexual activities (masturbation or sex with another person) in front of the child
  • Exhibitionism (such as showing one’s erect penis to a child)
  • Using the child as a pornographic object (such as taking pictures of children in swimsuits for sexual arousal)
  • Talking to a child using sexual innuendoes


  • Engaging the child in sexual conversations
  • Persuading the child to participate in sexual interaction and erotic play
  • Showing the child pornographic materials depicting acts of sexual intercourse by other children or adults

Child sexual abuse material:

  • Intentionally viewing or downloading sexualized images of children for sexual gratification
  • Intentionally downloading sexualized stories involving children for sexual gratification

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