Topic: Violence and abuse

Adolescents who sexually abuse

Kruse, A. E. (2011). Unge som begår seksuelle overgrep [Adolescents who sexually abuse ] Norwegian only.

​What do we know about adolescents who have sexually abused?

It can be difficult to state anything exact concerning the prevalence of sexual abuse among adolescents. Prevalence studies of sexual abuse measure many different types of abuse and abusive acts, with varying degrees of severity.

Large variations are also found amongst adolescents with harmful sexual behaviors. There are differences in the number of victims, the victims’ gender and age, type of abuse and the degree of violence during the abuse. This review focuses on the characteristics of both the abusive act, the situation in which the abuse occurs and the perpetrator.

There are hypotheses and models describing why some adults sexually abuse children, but these cannot necessarily be directly applied to adolescents who sexually abuse.
From research and clinical experience many hypotheses and models that explain adolescents’ sexually abusive behavior have also been developed. Some of these models and hypotheses are presented in the present review.

Society’s response to adolescents with harmful sexual behavior can include different practical measures and treatment. It is important that both the victim and the perpetrator receive help, to limit the damage of the abuse and to prevent new abusive episodes from occurring.