Supporting parents of sexually exploited young people

Children Services
Child Sexual Exploitation
Parenting Support
Safeguarding: CYP

Posted: 13 January 2018

This review focuses on what is helpful in enabling parents to maintain or rebuild positive, supportive relationships when their child has been sexually exploited. It is also relevant to situations where serious concerns exist about exploitation. It is intended for practitioners working in specialist services, child protection and universal services in order to inform better professional responses.


This review has been completed by the Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse (CSA) who have been established to help bring about significant and system-wide change in how child sexual abuse is responded to locally and nationally.


1) Introduction 7

1.1. Methodology 8 1.2. Context 8 

Evidence from the family support literature 10
2.1.  Key principles of good practice 10 

2.2.  Theories underpinning parent support 11 

2.3.  Access to support 14 


2) Parenting teenagers 17

3.1.  Adolescent development 17 

3.2.  Gender, adolescence and risk 18 

3.3.  Parent-teenager relationships 20 

3.4.  The support needs of parents of teenagers 21 

3.5.  Promising interventions to support parents of ‘troubled’ teenagers 23 

3.6.  Interventions to support parents of sexually abused children and
young people 26 


3) Parenting sexually exploited young people 29

4.1.  Impact of CSE on the family 29 

4.2.  What parents nd helpful – lessons from PACE 30 

4.3.  E ective approaches to supporting parents – lessons from recent evaluations 33 


4) Summary and conclusions 37

5.1  Lessons for practitioners and service managers 37 

5.2  A needs-led framework 38 

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