Sexual abuse or assault is when one person uses force, the threat of force or coercion to make another person engage in sexual behavior against his or her will. Assailants commit sexual assault by way of violence, threats, coercion, manipulation, pressure or tricks. Whatever the circumstances, no one asks or deserves to be sexually assaulted.
The most common myth of sexual assault is that a stranger is the abuser when the reality is that about half of the people who have been sexually assaulted have known who their assailant was. A victim of sexual assault can be anyone, at any age, and of any race or cultural or religious background.
Children can be victims of molestation and sexual assault at a young age, and oftentimes it goes unreported until the child is a teen or an adult.
Oftentimes when a victim of sexual assault comes forward, the victim is blamed for the assault, saying it was the way they acted or how they dressed, or they were in the wrong place at the wrong time, or why didn’t they fight back. No victim is at fault for a sexual assault.
Assailants can use force, coercion, manipulation, tricks or threats to sexually assault someone. Although sexual assault involves sex, do not mistake a loving an intimate encounter with one of violence and fear. Any unwanted and forced sexual act, including anal, oral and vaginal sex, can be considered sexual assault.
Drugs may also play a role. You may have heard about “date rape” drugs like Rohypnol (“roofies”), gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), and ketamine. Drugs like these can easily be mixed in drinks to make a person black out and forget things that happen. Both men and women who have been given these drugs report feeling paralyzed, having blurred vision, and lack of memory.
Even if you are in a relationship with someone and they force you to have sex, that is still sexual assault. Someone who truly cares about you would never force you to have any form of intercourse with them.
If you feel you have been sexually assaulted, please feel free to call us about services. Your information will be kept confidential. Contact us at our 24 Hour Hotline at (209) 722-4357.
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