The spectrum of adverse mental health trajectories caused by sexual abuse, broadly defined as exposure to rape and unwanted physical sexual contact, is well-known. Few studies have systematically appraised the epidemiology and impact of sexual abuse among boys and men. New meta-analytic insights (k = 44; n = 45 172) reported by Zarchev and colleagues challenge assumptions that men experiencing mental ill health rarely report sexual abuse exposure. Adult-onset sexual abuse rates of 1–7% are observed in the general population, but for men experiencing mental ill health, adult lifetime prevalence was 14.1% (95% CI 7.3–22.4%), with past-year exposure 5.3% (95% CI 1.6–12.8%). We note that these rates are certainly underestimates, as childhood sexual abuse exposures were excluded. Boys and men with a sexual abuse history experience substantial disclosure and treatment barriers. We draw attention to population health gains that could be achieved via implementation of gender-sensitive assessment and intervention approaches for this at-risk population.