Types of Sexual Abuse

Discover the types of sexual abuse in this article!
Types of Sexual Abuse

Last update: 04 March, 2019

The types of sexual abuse have changed depending on culture, the moment in history, and current laws. Hence, there isn’t a general consensus on abuse. In this regard, some health professionals are very prudish when it comes to sexual abuse. For example, some don’t even consider genital mutilation a type of abuse.

Félix López condemns two professional and social conducts: forgetting about the other types of abuse and not considering  child sexuality.

In this article, we’ll discuss the different types of sexual abuse.

“Respect me but also answer my questions, accept my sexuality, and teach me how to love.”

-Félix López-

Woman experiencing a type of sexual abuse.

Nine types of sexual abuse

Sexual abuse is an act that can affect a person’s sexual and affectional development. Félix López states that there are nine of sexual abuse:

  • Self-harm or any type of bodily harm to intimate areas. For example, genital mutilation or binding breasts so they don’t grow, etc.
  • Sexual abuse. Abusers tend to be older than their victims. They’re usually in power positions and manipulate their victims.
  • Sexual exploitation. Any kind of commercial sexual transaction.
  • Pornography. Including producing, selling, and buying someone’s sexual content with or without their consent.
  • Child marriage. These engagements are made by adults. The victims are often female.
  • Not accepting sexual identity. For example, not recognizing transexual or transgender people. Many suffer from this and it negatively affects their life.
  • Not accepting sexual orientation. For example, not accepting homosexuality or bisexuality. This means not respecting a person’s sexual and affectional needs.
  • Gender violence, domestic violence, intrafamily violence, and inegalitarian education. Gender violence and intrafamily violence affect socialization. Discriminatory education makes it difficult for people to fully develop their affection and sexuality.
  • Sexual negligence. Living in a sexually violent society, not accepting that people with disabilities have sexual needs, and not providing a good sexual education at home or at school.
A sad boy clinging to his teddy bear and his mother.

Types of child sexual abuse

Sexual abuse can disturb children and teen development. Most abused girls get touched below the waist, while boys may be molested below or above the waist and also get masturbated or have to masturbate their abuser.

When the abuse is frequent, the effects worsen in 40% or 50% of cases. This happens because the child feels impotent or the abuse becomes more aggressive.

It’s important to teach kids to respect their bodies as well as others’, both sexually and non-sexually. Above all, we need to accept child sexuality, offer education and protection, and avoid any kind of sexual abuse.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • López, F. (2014). Abusos sexuales y otras formas de maltrato sexual. Madrid. Editorial Síntesis.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.