DEFINITION OF SEXUAL ABUSE
Sexual assault is forced, manipulated or coerced sexual contact. It includes rape, child sexual abuse, same-sex assault, acquaintance rape, drug facilitated rape, harassment and marital rape.
Rape is not about uncontrollable sexual urges; it is an attack to inflict physical and emotional violence and humiliation on the victim. The perpetrator exerts power and control over the victim using sex as a weapon.
Anyone can be a victim of sexual assault. Women, men, and children of all ages, races, income levels, levels of education, and from all types of neighborhoods can be victimized.
Sexual assault is a physical assault. It is important not to minimize the emotional abuse in some instances such as inappropriate conversations held in the presence of children. It is abuse when an adult shares and intimate experience with them. Some families expose each other by not being fully dressed or leaving the doors to the bedroom open while changing. All of these acts make other people feel uncomfortable and therefore are inappropriate. In any situation, it is important to have good boundaries and help all people in you presence feel comfortable.
Think about coming into SASA and talking to an advocate about the situations that you are uncomfortable with. If you are a parent and need some help in protecting your children, we are here to help you.
TACTICS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT:
Sexual assault is surrounded by myths and misconceptions that create doubt and disbelief in the place of much needed belief and support for victims.
Many victims fear they will be killed or permanently disfigured during a sexual assault, even if such actions are not threatened. Perpetrators will use whatever level of violence necessary to achieve their goal. It is often said the whatever you did to survive was perfect. Most often following an assault, the victims have a list of "what they should have done instead". It is important to remember that you did everything you could in that moment.
Rape victims may feel a wide variety of emotions after the physical assault has ended.
These include: fear, guilt, disbelief, numbness, anger, grief, depression, and a loss of control over their lives.
Some common concerns reported by victims of sexual violence include:
YOUR REACTION TO SEXUAL ASSAULT:
There are many reasons why people don't fight back when they are sexually assaulted.
When people are afraid, in shock, or caught by surprise, their bodies respond in all kinds of ways. They may freeze, laugh, go along with it, or they may go somewhere else in their minds. Whatever you did to get out of the situation was okay.
Feeling guilt or blaming yourself is a normal response. it is an effort to gain some control over a situation that was uncontrollable.
If you are the victim of a rape, then you are experiencing a life crisis. Like many crisis victims, you will experience feelings that are not within the normal scope of emotions.
No matter what the situation, remember...
1 of 6 U.S. women and 1 of 33 U.S. men has experienced an attempted or complete rape in their lifetime. (National Violence Against Women Survey, “Prevalence, Incidence, and Consequences of Violence Against Women,” November 1998)
Of the nearly 650,000 adult women living in Nebraska, over 84,000 have been raped at least once in their lives. (Kilpatrick & Ruggiero, Rape in Nebraska: A Report to the State, 2003)
Between 70% and 85% of all rapes are committed by an “acquaintance” – someone known to the victim. (National Victim Center & Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center. “Rape in America: A report to the Nation.” Arlington, VA: National Victim Center, 1992)
CALL SASA IF YOU HAVE BEEN THE VICTIM OF SEXUAL ASSAULT. WE ARE HERE TO HELP.
SASA HOTLINE – (402)463-4677
CALLS ARE ANSWERED 24-HOURS A DAY.
**Note: For your safety- at any time press the escape (ESC) button on the site and you will be sent to a separate website to prevent detection from unsafe situations**