Incest is sexual contact between persons who are so closely related that their marriage is illegal (e.g., parents and children, uncles/aunts and nieces/nephews, etc.). This usually takes the form of an older family member sexually abusing a child or adolescent.

Laws vary from place to place regarding what constitutes incest, child sexual abuse, sexual assault, and rape.

How common is Incest?

There are very few reliable statistics about how often incest occurs. It’s difficult to know how many people are affected by incest because many incest situations never get reported. There are many reasons that the victim might not report the abuse.

What makes Incest different than child sexual abuse?

All forms of child sexual abuse can have negative long-term effects for the victim.

Incest is especially damaging because it disrupts the child’s primary support system, the family.

What should I do if I am a victim of incest?

First, know that this is not your fault! No one deserves to be abused.
Get some help. You do not have to handle this on your own!


What should I do if someone I know is a victim of incest?


Help keep the victim safe.

Follow up.

Remember to take care of yourself! Being involved with an incest situation can be scary or upsetting.