Yesterday I had a speaker from Safe Haven come to my women's group. Safe Haven is a a victim's assistance program for victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence. Safe Haven is located in many states throughout the country. Yesterday she spoke of sexual assault, and I thought it is something important enough to share it with you.
Sexual assault in the United States can be all too often a taboo subject that rarely gets brought up in conversation or in other formats. Sadly, many victims feel don't want to talk about it because they feel too ashamed and embarrassed. And, when we hear the news surrounding high profile cases in which celebrities or sports start are accused of sexual assault, the women who bring charges against these celebrities often find themselves brutalized by the media and society at large. Rape is one of the few crimes in which the victim is attacked instead of sympathized with. These cases are often so severe that the women drop all charges in order to regain their normal life, land when victims of rape are attacked by the media, the cycle of guilt and shame regarding assault is intensified and more and more women fail to report incidences.
What is Sexual Assault?
Sexual Assault and abuse is any sexual activity that one party does not agree to. This can include:
- Inappropriate touching
- Vaginal, anal or oral penetration
- Sexual intercourse when one party says no or is drugged
- Attempted rape
- Child molestation
The following have been deemed unable to give consent:
- Anyone under the age of 17
- Those who are mentally disabled
- Those who are mentally incapacitated i.e under the influence of drugs and alcohol
- Those who are physically helpless