"Understanding Child Abuse" is the first book to look at women whose partners are child sex offenders. Much of the book is devoted to the voices of the women themselves, telling their stories and how they feel about the situations in which they found themselves, how they coped, and how they remade their lives and those of their families. They describe what they learned from their experience and how it changed them. Such experience is largely overlooked by researchers, agencies and policy makers and this book throws unique light on this neglected area.The chapters cover: what we know about child sexual abuse, offenders and the effect of sexual abuse on children; a detailed description of the work which allows the women to explore and compare their experiences and feelings about what has happened; and, verbatim interviews with both partners and offenders. Combining theory, practice and personal testimony in a concise and accessible manner, "Understanding Child Abuse" is essential reading for social work practitioners and students as well as probation officers and anyone involved with child protection. It will also be of interest to members of the public.