Sexually abused child victims have been sexualized by the experience in such a way that it alters sexual development and sexual behavior patterns. Some children develop sexually inappropriate behaviors, one of the warning signs that a child has experienced sexual abuse. 

Sexually inappropriate behaviors include:
  • Sexual behaviors that are different from those normal for the age of the child
  • Behaviors that indicate the child has adult-level knowledge of sexual activities
  • Non-response to repeated requests to stop the sexual behaviors
  • Sexual behaviors in public after the child has been told these are not acceptable 
  • Other children complaining of the sexual behaviors of the child
  • An element of force or pain involved in the sexual behavior with other children
  • Sexual behaviors that involve pain or discomfort to the child
  • Sexualizing non-sexual objects
  • Anger associated with sexual behavior
  • Use of bribery or threat with sexual behaviors
  • Attempting sexual behaviors with adults who are uncomfortable with them
  • Seductiveness with adults
  • Unusual affection-seeking 
  • Sexual contact with an animal
  • Promiscuity in adolescence
  • Juvenile prostitution    


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