Common excuses made by parents, relatives or family friends who sexually assault children –
1. “All fathers do this”
Underlying this excuse is the attitude that children are their father’s property. The offender tries to trick the child into thinking that the father is making his rightful fatherly demand on the child.
2. “My wife is not well or do not care about me”
This excuse shifts the blame for the crime of sexual abuse from the offender to his wife. It perpetuate the idea that if the husband’s sexual needs are not met, he is ‘forced’ to turn elsewhere.
3. “The child led me on”
With this excuse, the offender refuses to accept responsibility for his actions and goes to the extent of accusing the child of ‘asking for it’.
4. “I was just showing affection”
The offender here is claiming to be unable to tell the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour towards children. This excuse plays down the seriousness of the assault and confuses the child into thinking that everything is alright.
5. “it didn’t do any harm”
The offender denies the crime and reject any suggestion of blame and responsibility by claiming that no harm is done by sexually assaulting the child. Harmful effects are not always easy to detect and will only appear in later life.
6. “I am just giving you some sex education”
By taking advantage of the child’s trust, the offender pretend to be doing something to benefit the child when in fact they are acting only from selfish motives.