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How to prevent child sexual abuse: Know the myths and realities

How would you describe a sex offender? In all likelihood, you would describe a monster — someone who lurks behind bushes and rapes unsuspecting women or abuses children. And that is how sex offenders are portrayed in the media. For most of us, much of what we know about sex offenders comes from movies, TV shows and news stories. However, those stories are often sensationalized portrayals — or cases that are the exception to the rule — rather than the norm. While cases like these do exist, they remain statistically rare, in that they happen very infrequently. In this article, we are going to review the myths and realities of sex offenders and sex offending behavior. It is important that, as parents, you know the true facts — knowledge is power. We have set up this article in a myth versus fact format, as myths about sex offenders abound, and it is important to separate myth from reality.

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Myth: Most sex offenses are committed by strangers.

Fact: The large majority of sex offenders are known to the victim.

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