Uncle Brian is a Criminal

Learning about sexual abuse

Learning About Sexual Abuse
Aho and Petras

This type of material is one we see quite often on this site. (Click here to see Mr T help kids, or this gem of a book that tells kids that sex abuse will make you gay.) Most of it dates from the 1980s and 90s when there was a lot of hysteria associated with stranger danger, sex abuse, and other crimes against children.

Regardless, this book is still dated. Most of the perpetrators are portrayed as having “problems” or are misunderstood. Unfortunately, no one seems to get these people arrested and charged with a crime. However, they do do get counseling or “help”. Note the final line in the story where Uncle Brian is evidently still allowed to hang out with the family. Evidently, just some once a week counseling and a “good talking to” by Laura’s parents will fix Uncle Brian right up. Notice how no one helps Laura and she still has to hangout with creepy Uncle Brian.

Weed it and don’t look back.




back cover and author bio

Laura and Uncle brian's story

sexual abuse discussion

talking to parents


  1. I have two granddaughters who both have an Uncle Brian (he’s not a perv, that’s just his name). I am so torn about having laughed at this.

  2. I have an uncle Brian too, and my name is just spelled slightly different than the girl in this book. And that’s where the similarity ends. 🙂

    Seriously, why is the molester nearly always an uncle? And which parent is he the brother or brother-in-law of?

  3. To be fair, I think the “Uncle Brian gets help” thing is intended to ease feelings of guilt a child might have about coming forward with this very difficult information. But it’s a bad intention, because Mom and Dad can and should go to the police, and then things won’t go so well for Uncle Brian. So yes, weed.

  4. I think just their insistence on calling genitals “sexual organs” would make this a weeder. The mental images that term is generating for me are weird and as a kid I think it would have been really confusing as to what they meant.

  5. I can’t believe this is supposed to be read by kids. No child would want to read this! The cover is ugly and looks like a teacher’s manual, the art is so basic it looks like it belongs in a CPR guide, and the writing is extremely dry and stilted. There’s no way a child could relate to this, even if they’re being abused. There has to be something more engaging out there.

    1. This book was published in 1985, when child sexual abuse was first being discussed. Plus, the authors were primarily therapists, not creators of children’s books. The mere mention of the subject was groundbreaking at the time.

  6. I thought the description sounded familiar, and now that I read the pages, I am positive that I read this book as a child. It was in my school media center, along with a picture book on the same topic that was more palatable (but had its own problems) that I believe was also featured on this site.

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