Causes of Child Sexual Abuse

Causes of abuse remain elusive

Resource for victims, families

Why do people abuse children? The causes of child sexual abuse are complex and not well understood. The myth that adults who were sexually abused as children are more likely to offend has been well and truly debunked.

According to the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services: “Sexual abuse is associated with attitudes to women and sex that men learn from a young age as well as unequal power relationships between men and women and adults and children.”

The Child Abuse Royal Commission is commissioning a series of research projects investigating various causes of abuse.

Most of these research projects are still underway. One project has spoken to 121 children and young people aged four to 18 years about safety in institutional settings and what need to change to improve safety.