Male Survivors of Sexual Assault
Our society’s expectations of men are that men are always strong, invulnerable, stoic, and in control. Despite these stereotypes, men of all ages, sizes, strengths, looks, personalities, and sexual orientations are victims of sexual assault. Males are sexually assaulted both as adults and as children.
Many people wonder why men are assaulted at lower rates than women. Sexual assault usually results from the perpetrator’s attempt to feel more powerful, thus the individuals who are perceived as having less power are often at greater risk for sexual assault. This is one reason why males are less often sexually assaulted than females, and why male children are at a greater risk of sexual abuse than are adult males. On an individual emotional level, males are just as profoundly affected by sexual assault as females. As a result of the assault, male survivors frequently experience emotions such as:
- confusion over sexual intimacy
These reactions are common because our society perpetuates the myth that sexual assault is about sexual attraction not domination and power. This same myth often inhibits survivors from seeking help in the aftermath of the assault. All survivors, male or female, are entitled to receive empathetic, non-judgmental support and information after an assault. And, regardless of gender, the assault is never the survivor’s fault.
It is not unusual for a sexual assault to leave a male survivor questioning his masculinity and often his sexual identity or orientation if his abuser was male. This is one reason among many that men are less likely to report a sexual assault. It is not unusual for a sexual assault to leave a male survivor questioning his masculinity. This, among other reasons, is why men are less likely to report a sexual assault.
Verity offers counseling services to survivors of all genders. Call Verity for more information about services at 545-7270 x 14. We have a large list of therapists and other providers in Sonoma County so that you can find the help that is the best fit for you.