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Child sexual abuse

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The media can be a great tool for increasing public awareness about sexual violence, but it can also pose challenges for some survivors. Portrayals of sexual violence in movies, television shows, the news, and social media can prompt negative reactions, from flashbacks and anxiety to feelings of sadness or irritability. Below are a few ways to help limit your exposure to media that could prompt these uncomfortable experiences. Movies and TV Shows Movies and television programs that depict sexual violence can be part of dramatic plots, contain graphic scenes, or emphasize trauma over healing. Keep the following tips in mind to help navigate your viewing experience in a safe way. You are in control. You never have to watch something to prove you can handle it. If you go to a movie and find it upsetting, feel free to leave. If your favorite weekly television show includes a scene you find upsetting, it is ok to…

Continued… HERE’S THE THING NOW. Like I said after this incident, my brother and I never spoke of it again. So, we continued our relationship as usual (only now I had a sudden and intense urgency to constantly beat him up, which I would. Of course, now it all makes sense). But, we’ve been best friends since. Now that I’m thinking of it, what probably happened was that he was entering the puberty-age, and I think maybe he was scrolling through TV channels late at night. Sometimes, on HBO or Showtime, they would show dirty movies (I know this because I later discovered this when I first started puberty at around 9). I know that when I came across a dirty film for the first time (around puberty age too), THATS WHEN I first had any feelings of arousal and a desire to just touch myself. I began masturbating at…

I keep replaying a faded memory in my head lately. These past few years, I think I’ve only thought about it 3 or 4 times (and only for a split second). However, for some reason, for the past few months, I’ve begun to remember bits and pieces more and more. Each day, I think about it more frequently, and I’m hoping that since I’ve recently reinforced my daily self-care routine (daily meditations, writing my poems/lyrics, daily cardio, doing word puzzles, learning at least 1 new thing per day, keeping the house clean) that this new method of Philosophical Meditation will help me in uncovering and finally one day facing the truth. I’ve told ONE person before since it happened, and she was my best friend in middle school. I remember being in absolute shock that I had even admitted it. I don’t remember going into details, I don’t even really…

Sexual assault is a seriously under-reported crime. Victims and survivors do not report their assault to law enforcement for several reasons; such as, fear of retaliation from perpetrators; feelings of shame and embarrassment; a belief that the rape, abuse or harassment was a minor incident and not a police matter; and a concern that police and prosecutors would question their veracity and credibility. Victims who report the crime and are willing to cooperate with police and prosecutors as the case moves forward may encounter criminal justice officials who are skeptical of their allegations and who question their credibility. Sadly, victims experience these negative outcomes all too often. There is much to be done, there is much that can be done if sexual assault is to be treated as the violent crime it is and if victims of sexual assault are to be treated with respect and dignity. We had a…

Secondary victimization is characterized by engagement in victim-blaming attitudes, behaviors, and practices, which result in additional trauma for sexual assault survivors. Secondary victimization minimizes the significance of a crime, which leads to apathetic and discriminative attitudes. Far-reaching political, legal, and social implications result from these attitudes, ranging from low conviction rates for sexual assault cases, to victims’ hindered psychological recovery. In order to combat secondary victimization, it is vital to understand and then challenge these prejudicial attitudes. Some of the elements that influence secondary victimization including hyper-masculinity, gender-traditionality (GRT), relationship closeness, the participant gender, level of belief in a just world, and religiosity on victim-blame attribution are explored below: Hyper-Masculinity. One factor that influences secondary victimization is attitudes around hyper-masculinity and gender-role traditionality. Research has found that males are more likely than females to blame a victim. An explanation is that females tend to empathize with victims, whereas males often…

For victims of rape, sexual abuse or sexual assault, especially those who are courageous enough to brave the trauma and stigma to bring their case to trial, undergoing the rigors of a trial especially facing their perpetrator and reliving the terrible ordeal, can be quite overwhelming. This is why it is necessary to dispel some of the myths and focus on some of the truths of what victims of rape or sexual assault can expect from the justice system. It is necessary to state at this point that some of the issues which will be discussed are what would transpire in an ideal setting where the justice system works as seamlessly as it should. In Nigeria, cases of sexual assault that actually go to trial are very minimal in relation to actual cases of sexual assault. This makes discussing what to expect at trial a bit difficult as there are…

Sexual response or orgasm during sexual assault is the best-kept and most deeply shameful secret of many victims and survivors. Unfortunately, some people believe that if a victim experiences arousal while being raped, that person must have enjoyed being raped. Some others believe that arousal is synonymous with consent. However, consent is not given by a person’s body parts, it is verbally given by a sober, informed, non-coerced partner. And since vaginas and penises can’t speak, it’s safe to say that they cannot give consent. If you are a survivor, and you experienced pleasure, no matter how little, it’s important that you understand that sexual response in sexual assault is extremely common, it is also well-documented and nothing for you to be ashamed of. Below is some information from researchers and professionals about sexual arousal and sexual assault: Rape and Sexual Arousal: Rape is not always violent. Some survivors surrender…

“A while ago?” her friend asked. “Yes, he raped me a while ago. Exactly nine months and two days ago. What’s that? Nine months or nine minutes. It’s the same thing. And it is in the past, you say? Then why is it still happening, every day, every time I close my eyes? Every time I hear someone behind me, and I don’t know who it is; or someone touches me, and I didn’t see it coming? How is it that I get an almost irresistible urge to punch anyone who happens to touch me unexpectedly? Tell me, sis, how do I forgive, let alone forget, something that is still happening, that keeps happening over and over? How? How do I do that?”  – A Survivor. People who are traumatized, like sexual assault survivors, have good reason to feel that they should be hyperaware of possible danger. Hypervigilance is an…

A detailed education program that covers all aspect of sexuality is based on the idea that young people have the right to be informed about their sexuality and to make responsible decisions about their sexual and reproductive health. From all indications, there are a number of confusions about sexuality education, one of which is defining it as “sex education”. The word “sex” is used in our culture to mean sexual intercourse. “Sexuality” is a much broader word and its meanings include sexual values and decision-making, biology, emotions, gender identity, sex roles, relationships and feelings. It’s often difficult to talk with children and young people in general about sexuality, in part because most people didn’t have parents who discussed it with them. Therefore, they lack models of positive sexuality educators. Also, sexuality education programs continue to come under attack by supporters of abstinence-only education because they may believe some of the…