Understanding Child Abuse : The Partners of Child Sex Offenders Tell Their Stories book cover
1st Edition

Understanding Child Abuse
The Partners of Child Sex Offenders Tell Their Stories

ISBN 9780415456005
Published January 2, 2009 by Routledge
160 Pages

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $42.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Understanding Child Abuse is the first book to look at women whose partners are child sex offenders. Much of the book is devoted to the voices of the women themselves, telling their stories and how they feel about the situations in which they found themselves, how they coped, and how they remade their lives and those of their families. They describe what they learned from their experience and how it changed them.

Such experience is largely overlooked by researchers, agencies and policy makers and this book throws unique light on this neglected area. The chapters cover:

    • What we know about child sexual abuse, offenders and the effect of sexual abuse on children.
    • A detailed description of the work which allows the women to explore and compare their experiences and feelings about what has happened.
    • Verbatim interviews with both partners and offenders.

Combining theory, practice and personal testimony in a concise and accessible manner, Understanding Child Abuse is essential reading for social work practitioners and students as well as probation officers and anyone involved with child protection. It will also be of interest to members of the public.

Table of Contents

Introduction  1. Children, Sexual abuse and its effects  2. A mother’s lot  3. Child sex offenders and what we know about them  4. A place of safety

View More



Terry Philpot is the author and editor of more than a dozen books, including Adoption (with Anthony Douglas) and five books on working with sexually abused children. He is a trustee of the Social Care Institute for Excellence and of the board of the Michael Sieff Foundation. He is a former editor of Community Care and has won several awards for his journalism.


'Through sensitive interviews, Terry Philpot reveals the range of feelings and emotions experienced by mothers whose male partners have sexually abused children. He provides an invaluable insight into the varied motivations and behaviours of sex offenders and the ways their offending can be addressed. He surveys the available research and presents the key findings in an immensely readable and engaging style. This is a valuable contribution to a long neglected aspect of sex abuse.'

Sir Roger Singleton CBE, Chair of the Independent Safeguarding Authority