Spot the signs

Are you being sexually exploited?

It’s not okay for someone to:

  • Threaten to end your relationship if you don’t have sex
  • Ask or make you have sex with other people
  • Expect sex in return for food or a place to stay
  • Share drugs or alcohol with you in return for sexual acts
  • Threaten to stop being friends if you don’t perform sexual ‘dares’
  • Give you gifts or money in return for sexual acts
  • Ask you to take sexual photos of yourself or share them online or by text
  • Threaten to humiliate or share sexual images of you if you don’t carry out more sex acts

This isn’t a complete list, but if any of the scenarios sound familiar then you may have been sexually exploited, even if the person who did it was a friend, boyfriend or girlfriend. If you are under 18, this behaviour towards you is against the law. No one is allowed to do these things to you and you should get help or report it.

You should also read this list of ways to help you and your friends keep safe.


Help and advice for parents or carers worried about their child.


If work with or care for young people, visit our resources for professionals. Make sure you can recognise the warning signs and know how to report it.