Today, throughout much of the world, there is much concern over the perpetration of sexual abuse by male offenders and enormous amounts of resources dedicated to catching and convicting them, as well as large collective efforts to aid the survivors of such abuse. What is largely not as well known and ignored is the perpetration of sexual abuse by female offenders and that is going to be the topic of this thread.
There appears to be a stereotype that only males are capable of sexual abuse and that any females that engage in it were forced to do it by a male partner. This assumption is dangerously flawed and usually leaves the victims of female abusers in a much more difficult position in terms of overall psychological impact, the chances of successfully pressing charges against an abuser and ending the abuse. Studies have shown that 86% of victims of female sexual abuse are not believed when they come forward with their allegations. the stigma attached to the notion that only males are capable of committing sexual abuse can lead to the victims of it suffering twice as a result of it, first the actual abuse and then when they are not believed when they tell someone of it.
The numbers of female sexual abusers is likely much higher than many individuals may believe. Studies have indicated that approximately 25% of all victims of childhood sexual abuse have been abused by women. The Lucy Faithful Foundation in the United Kingdom estimated that 20% of all sexual abusers are women, conservatively. Of this number, approximately two thirds of all the cases of abuse were committed by the childs mother. The statistics for abuse by those women usually trusted to supervise children in the absence of parents are also likely much higher than most would have previously believed. This information is taken from the Canadian Childrens Rights Council website:
It is interesting to note in the study by Kaufman et al. (1995) that 8% of the female perpetrators were teachers and 23% were babysitters, compared to male perpetrators who were 0% and 8% respectively. Finkelhor et al. (1988) also report significantly higher rates of sexual abuse of children by females in day-care settings. Of course, Finkelhor's findings should not surprise us given that women represent the majority of day-care employees.
As for the women that have had a male accomplice in their abuse the stereotype that were forced and manipulated into doing it is largely incorrect. Instead, studies have found that many female abusers will actively seek out partners that share their interest in the abuse of children.
In terms of types of abuse, the stereotype that only males are capable of sexual abuse because they have a penis is also incorrect. While males are more likely to attempt to engage in sexual intercourse with their victims, females will usually engage in penetration with and sodomy with different types of assorted objects that they have access to. Individual victims of this have reported abuse by the use of, sticks, bottles, kitchen utensils, roses with the thorns still attached to the stem and anything else that they have access to. Women will also usually attempt to force children to engage in the viewing of pornography, mutual masturbation and forcing the victim to perform oral sex on them.
For the genders of the victims women were more likely to target male then females for their abuse. This information is also taken from the Canadian Childrens Rights Council website:
In the cases of sexually motivated homicide, females observe the same pattern of targeting the opposite sex as males do, with 75% of all cases of sexually motivated homicide being against males.
In terms of the difficulties that victims of female sexual abusers face in getting others to believe that they were abused by a woman, they also have to deal with lower conviction rates and lighter sentences than if their abuser were a man.
The purpose of this thread is to highlight the practices of sexual abuse by female abusers and also to share information on this subject in order to eliminate the myth that only men carry out sexual abuse and to encourage understanding of their victims and to always take it very seriously whenever anyone claims to have been abused, regardless of the gender of the perpetrator. Also, I hope that this will aid in the campaign to treat both victims and their perpetrators equally in the eyes of society and the legal system.
If you are interested in learning more about the subject of sexual abuse committed by females here are several helpful links that share information on this subject:
The Canadian Childrens Rights Council website, which hosts information on this topic as well as news stories of cases of sexual abuse committed by women:http://www.canadiancrc.com/Female_Sex_Offenders-Female_Sexual_Predators_awareness.aspx
Here is a link to the Female Sex Offenders website, which holds links to countless studies on the practice of female sexual abuse: http://female-offenders.com/Safehouse/
A U.K news article on female sexual predators inside the United Kingdom: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2009/oct/04/uk-female-child-sex-offenders
This is the Lucy Faithful Foundations website, which holds more information on the subject of female sexual predators: http://lucyfaithfull.org/
Here is part of documentary where victims detail the sexual abuse they endured at the hands of a female abuser: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKCHPYaVjxg
Finally here you can view a documentary about the breaking up of a female paedophile ring in the United Kingdom.
Part three: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6ENu0-Ee7I
Part four: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RL_PoXgEqgs