What is the difference between sexual assault and rape?
Sexual assault is the unwanted sexual contact. Which means being touched, and or having your personal boundaries crossed without providing your consent. Which can include fondling, petting, voyeurism, exhibitionism and sexual harassment.
Rape is by definition forced sexual intercourse. Force does not always have to be physical. It can be a verbal threat, a psychological threat or even coercion.
Who made up these lies that only women can have their sexual boundaries crossed?
Historically, the rape of males was more widely recognized in ancient times. Several of the legends in Greek mythology involved abductions and sexual assaults of males by other males or gods. The rape of a defeated male enemy was considered the special right of the victorious soldier in some societies and was a signal of the totality of the defeat. There was a widespread belief that a male who was sexually penetrated, even if it was by forced sexual assault, thus "lost his manhood," and could no longer be a warrior or ruler. Gang rape of a male was considered an ultimate form of punishment and, as such, was known to the Romans as punishment for adultery and the Persians and Iranians as punishment for violation of the sanctity of the harem (Donaldson, 1990)
There has been a lot of research conducted about sexual trauma. A lot of the research is directed to find the answer to what i call the Why questions:
Why, do sexual offenders offend?Why do they not receive rehabilitation?Why do male survivors not come forward? Why is there more treatment and support for female survivors vs male survivors?
Those are seemingly the why questions that has led to more research and conversation.
The conversations that have been suppressed all of these years.The conversations that are going to change the world.But, finally the conversations around male survivors are getting louder.
While, there is an entirely different set of why questions that lead to answering one of the big WHY questions Why don't men come forward, after being sexually assaulted?
It has been noted in multiple publications, and within research. That the act of sexual assault, is not even truly about the sexuality aspect of the event. No matter what the gender of the offender or of the offended. Sexual assault is about power and control.
It is a thought that male rape only happens in prisons. Little known fact, that is extremely untrue. These acts are happening around us everyday.
You should never question an individual that has experience sexual trauma. Would you question a woman that finally had the courage to seek support? So why would you question a man?
* You didn't like?* Do you feel gay now?* What happened?* Are you sure that was rape?* Why didn't you fight back or try and get away?Anything that starts with "why" or "at least".
Things that can be HELPFUL!
By asking What do you need from me right now?
SHOULD BE one of the first questions you ask a survivor. As they have just shown that they trust you. You are now a safe space for them. SO BE THAT SAFE SPACE!
The mission of 1in6 is to help men who have had unwanted or abusive sexual experiences in childhood live healthier, happier lives.
Male Rape. Yes, men can be victimized. No, it does not mean you are weak. A listing of web resources for male survivors.
Dedicated to a safe world, we are an organization of diverse individuals committed through research, education, advocacy, and activism to the prevention, treatment and elimination of all forms of sexual victimization of boys and men.
RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) is the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization and was named one of "America's 100 Best Charities" by Worth magazine. RAINN created and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE) in partnership with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the Department of Defense. RAINN also carries out programs to prevent sexual violence, help victims, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice.