Years have passed by, and the crisis of sexual assault continues to terrify thousands of human beings across the globe. Victim shaming takes place almost all around the world. It is the worst way to go about dealing with sexual assault.
The aftermath of such abuse could be deadly, causing depression, fear and even physical distress. People can feel compelled to contemplate self-harm. In the past, society has formed stereotypes assuming that women are the only ones who are susceptible to sexual assault and rape, as people label them as ones who are more sensitive and submissive in society. In reality, male-related sexual abuse is prominent too and it is not usually spoken about.
Several reports have voiced opinions about this issue. To begin with, America’s Cable News Network (CNN) stated that one out of every ten male youth have faced sexual assault. Moreover, it has also reported that men find it more difficult to define what happened to them as assault. Consequently, another documentary by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) also reported that one out of every six men are raped. To make matters worse, only 10 per cent of the cases are reported to the authorities.
Why? It’s because just like women, men are also sensitive, they also have feelings, and more importantly, they are also human beings. They get buried under the same shame and victim blaming. Besides, another reason for male victims to hide their fears are also due to society’s reaction and assumption of their sexuality. This forces me to ask everyone, what could be the solution to this hidden crisis? We should change our mind-set, our thinking and stop being ignorant. Furthermore, we should educate our youth and adults about sexual assault, so that they don’t live with misconceptions and learn to empathise with victims, irrespective of gender.
- The reader is a writer based in Dubai.