Understanding and Assessing Child Sexual Maltreatment, Second Edition updates its comprehensive coverage of child sexual abuse definitions and indicators, interview and questioning techniques, and diagnosis guidelines to include an insightful response to the building social backlash against the so-called "child abuse industry." Distinguished scholar and experienced practitioner Kathleen Coulborn Faller applies twenty-five years of clinical experience and state-of-the-art research to offer authoritative guidance to both novice and experience practitioners.

Definitions and Signs of Child Sexual Maltreatment

Definitions and signs of child sexual maltreatment

Most professionals who work with children receive training in the signs and symptoms of child sexual abuse as part of their postprofessional education. However, child sexual abuse encompasses a wide spectrum of acts, and there is disagreement about both when and whether some sexual acts are abusive. Moreover, some training provided in the 1970s and 1980s about indicators of sexual abuse has been determined to be incorrect, and new findings are constantly emerging. This chapter will address both definitions and signs of sexual abuse.

A Definition

Three different components of a definition of sexual abuse will be discussed in this section: (a) the types of sexual behavior, (b) the parameters of abusive versus nonabusive ...

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