What is rape, and to whom does it happen? Generally speaking, rape is a violent sexual act imposed on a nonconsenting partner that makes you question many things about yourself. Unfortunately the mythology usually surrounding rape is that it only happens to women. The fact is, rape does not only happen to women, but men as well. It is one of the most misunderstood of all crimes, and when the victim is male, understanding why it has happened, is one of the hardest things to comprehend.
When I first learned about rape, I thought that it was something that only happened to women that was brought on by a male. Growing up, one doesn't hear about male rape. It was unheard of. Granted it happened, but no one wanted to talk about it. The fact is, male rape is a lot more common than one would think. The thoughts and attitudes toward male rape are that "real men cannot be raped", or that being raped turns the victim into a homosexual. The fact is, the majority of the rapists as well as victims are generally heterosexual. It is because of these attitudes which surround male rape with a feeling of total humiliation for the victim, that it is rare for a male rape victim to acknowledge the fact that he has been raped to his family or friends, much less to the police. This is one of the key reasons why male rape is not ever heard of, and is hidden by a curtain of silence.
Like female survivors of sexual assault, male survivors experience fear, anger, and a feeling of no control. Men who have been raped also feel very ashamed, guilty, and embarrassed. It is not uncommon for a male rape victim to blame himself for the rape, believing that he in some way gave permission to the rapist. Male rape victims suffer a similar...
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...pe, camouflages the fact that the majority of the rapists are not generally homosexual. According to the man that I spoke to, Gay's are sick and tired of hearing about male rape. "It seems that every time someone hears about a man being raped by another male, the first assumption that pop's into their head is that oh he must have been fagot or gay. The fact is most men who rape, and are raped are heterosexual."
The rape of males, a very widespread and extremely serious problem, has escaped the attention of many people because of the beliefs that to be raped is to be stripped of your masculinity. The mythology that women are the only ones to get raped is a fallacy of popular belief. Men too get raped. Though it is not reported as much because of embarrassment, feeling shame, and questions of sexuality, it is still a very serious issue that needs to be addressed.
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