How do Children Disclose?

Children may disclose sexual abuse by directly telling someone about it. They may also disclose less directly, using different types of verbal and behavioural hints and clues across a period of time. A child may say something like “Uncle Andrew does funny things”

When children do disclose it can be to parents, siblings, neighbours, coaches, teachers, peers, grandparents etc

Research indicates that some children do not tell because they feel they will not be believed or be taken seriously. For this reason, it is fundamental that adults, whether family members, friends or professionals, actively listen, respond sensitively and take the disclosures seriously

With a disclosure of child sexual abuse

When children are supported, listened to, and kept safe following disclosure, the effects of sexual abuse can be reduced. If a child discloses to you:

Supporters need support to make sure you are not dealing with this alone, ring your local specialist sexual violence service for information resources or just to talk.