Sexual abuse

Sexual abuse is when someone is forced, pressurised or tricked into taking part in any kind of sexual activity with another person.

What is sexual abuse?

Sexual abuse can happen online or in person.

Examples of sexual abuse include:

  • Being touched in a way you don’t like without giving permission or consent.
  • Someone exposing themselves to you online or offline
  • Being forced to have sex (intercourse)
  • Being forced to look at sexual pictures or videos
  • Being made to do something sexual or watch someone do something sexual.

Facts about sexual abuse

  • It can happen to both girls and boys
  • Someone could be sexually abused by a stranger, somebody you love and trust or a boyfriend or girlfriend
  • Someone could be sexually abused by a person of the same sex
  • Sexual abuse isn’t always ‘full sex’ – it can also include touching, kissing, oral sex or anything sexual
  • Sexual abuse can happen online as well as offline
  • You're not alone and there are people who can help you.

Sexual abuse is wrong. It doesn’t matter how many times it happened, how long ago, or whether the abuser is male or female, it's still important that you get the help and support you need. It's never too late to tell somebody.

Telling someone helps!

Where can I go for help?