Question with regard to sexual assault victims; why is the world so comfortable blaming the victims for the crimes done against them? Making statements such as…“She wore a “way too short” skirt.” “She usually sleeps around.” “She was drunk…” “He’s 14. He’s lucky to have that experience with a 23-year-old.” “she didn’t tell anyone it happened so she must have wanted it.”
I’m here to tell you that there is only one person to blame and it’s the abuser. No matter gender, sexuality, sobriety, or appearance if you say NO it means NO.
Let’s look at it this way if you and I had sex before I have every right to say NO the next time. Let’s look at it another way, every 73 seconds an American is sexually assaulted which means that every 73 seconds a rapist is attacking their next victim. They select these victims not by what they wear or because they seem promiscuous but because they are rapists.
We as individuals have to stop making up excuses and stop blaming the innocent. Instead of questioning all the things that the victim could’ve done to prevent the incident, we should instead question how we could eliminate the threat of those taking what is not being offered.
No matter what you wear, do, or how you act you have every right to say NO/ STOP. Let make it very clear that an abuser is going to abuse their victim regardless of the circumstances. In no way shape or form is it the victim’s fault. Approximately 1 in 3 women and 1 in 6 men have experienced sexual violence. Of that less than 20% of rapes are reported, majority of victims of sexual violence do not come forth because they are afraid they won’t be believed or they are simply scared to relive the experience.
Male victims of rapes are rarely seen as rapes because it is usually not associated with violence like women are. With men, it is usually an older woman involved and close friends or family telling them that there is nothing wrong with what is happening. I had a friend tell me that he told his friends he didn’t want a woman to go down on him and they thought he was crazy for denying a woman. If you don’t feel comfortable taking the next step with someone it doesn’t make you any less of a man.
For every 1000 rapes in the US, 995 perpetrators will go unpunished which is a direct result of our legal system failing us. America has been plagued with an increase in sexual violence and a dramatic lack of will to assist these people in receiving their justice while also protecting those who participate in these despicable acts. This is not an attack on our justified system but an eye-opener on the way those who have faced sexual assault need all the support they can get.
If you are approached by someone who was a victim of sexual assault provide them with comforting unconditional support. Remind them that it is not their fault, that you are there for them, and most importantly tell them that you believe them.
Be that listening ear for them to vent to or that shoulder to cry on or the person to hold their hand while they file a report. Every little effort helps them know that they are not alone. If you are a person who has been sexually assaulted please do not hesitate to reach out for help. Call the National sexual assault hotline: (800)656-4673 or chat confidentiality online at hotline.rainn.org.
My question at the beginning wasn’t truly answered within the article instead it was a reiteration of reminding us to support any and all victims of sexual assault. NEVER is it warranted to blame or shame the victim!
Expect Kiss & Tell Magazine to discuss many issues surrounding the topic of sexual health and wellness. Some of the said articles will be under the category opinion.
Subscribe to our weekly newsletter below and be part of the K&T community so your voice will be heard in guiding our future content.
Please share by clicking one of the social buttons below or by copying the link. Thank you!