It is estimated that only 4 to 8% of child sexual abuse reports are false or fabricated.5 Or, in other words, between 92 and 96% of reports are true. That’s a lot! “Disclosure,” the term for telling someone about your experience of abuse, is never easy for survivors. Kids rarely disclose abuse for attention or to get someone in trouble; if a child discloses to you, it means they trust you to help and protect them. How you handle this situation can change that child’s life.
Listen to this story:
So what now?
The best thing to do if a child discloses is:
- Reassure them that you believe them, want to help them, and will support them.
- Ask open-ended questions like, “how did you get hurt?” or “what happened next?”
- Afterward, call your local authorities. You don’t need proof to report abuse!
Journal: What would you say if a child told you someone was abusing them? How would you feel? Make a gameplan now, so that if it ever does happen to you, you’re prepared and know what to do. If you want to know more about how to respond or report abuse, click here.