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PSB Resource Library

What are Problematic Sexual Behaviors (PSB)?

Problematic Sexual Behaviors (PSB) are child initiated behaviors, which are sexual in nature, developmentally inappropriate (possibly illegal) and potentially harmful to the child or others. 

While many caregivers may wish it weren't true, sexual development begins within infancy. Some sexual behaviors and sexual knowledge are typical for children and completely developmentally appropriate. Children are curious and exploratory as they're learning more about themselves and the world around them. 

Behaviors become Problematic based on a variety of factors including frequency, developmental considerations and of course harm.

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Problematic Sexual Behaviors May Include:

  • Self-harm through sexual touches

  • Inappropriate sexual interactions with another child

  • Inappropriate public displays of sexualized behavior

    • Excessive & public masturbation

    • Excessive use of sexualized language

    • Excessive use of explicit material

What Treatment Exists for Children with Problematic Sexual Behaviors?

Research finds that while Problematic Sexual Behaviors are serious - there is hope! With effective, evidence based treatment, children can go on to live lives free from these behaviors. Problematic Sexual Behavior - Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (PSB-CBT) has been found to be incredibly effective in addressing Problematic Sexual Behaviors along with general behavior problems within children, boasting a 98% success rate. This means that only 2% of children who have successfully completed treatment go on to re-present the behaviors later in life. 

How Can I Learn More?

Explore local and  national resources and training materials to deepen your understanding! Check out the links below for a variety of local and national resources, training materials and fact sheets. Interested in scheduling training for you and your team? Contact us today!

How Can I Get More Involved?

Join our Community Change Team! Our Community Change Team is a group of local professionals passionate about serving children, who work to improve access and reduce barriers to PSB-CBT within the Pee Dee. Facilitated by the CARE House of the Pee Dee, the Community Change Team meets virtually on the third Wednesday every other month. Contact Alice Curry Gallego at or 843-629-0236 to join!  

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