Male Rape Culture
What is this rape culture, this secret society of sexual abuse, male sexual entitlement? A few weeks ago I was talking to a long time friend. While talking about the good old days the topic of our conversation changed to rape. He began to give excuses of why girls and women were raped making the common mistake of blaming the victim. Big mistake! Rape is the only crime I know of where the victim is accused of the offense.
In our spirited conversation I reminded him of his history. At age nine my friend was raped. However he refused to see it as rape. As an adult he still doesn’t see it as rape. In fact he was proud of it. Like Chris Brown he felt there was nothing wrong with an older girl breaking him in. He bragged about it as if it marked his right of passage, his badge of honor. These survivors do not see the sexual encounter as a crime committed against them. It is a CRIME! You have been VICTIMIZED! It is a crime that warrants serious judicial determinations.
Richard P. Gartner, PhD , a blog writer for Psychology Today writes “Talking about boyhood sexual abuse and its aftermath for men can be difficult, even painful. But such talk is absolutely essential.” In his article he discusses many challenges a boy who has been sexually assaulted faces such as the trust factor, the confusion between abuse and affection, sexual orientation and more.
This topic is so much deeper and bigger than what can be contained in this short article. What type of life do survivors graft out for themselves.? Is the life and attitudes of a young boy who see his experience with an older girl as a right of passage different from the life and attitude of a boy who was sexually abused by an adult male. What are the psychological differences? What about a young high school boy who is seduced by his teacher. Does he see it has a medal of honor? What about the man who is raped in prison or in the military (side note, forty percent of military rapes are reported to be men raping men.) It’s interesting. The way a male survivor perceives the assault, the crime determines whether he brags proudly or bows in shame.
I hope this short blog enlightened you, causes you to think and question this American rape culture. But, where do we go from here? Where do you go? Will you ponder on this horrendous part of American society? Will you speak up? Will you empathize more with male survivors (and female survivors). Will you be silent no more? Our culture of males sexual entitlement has deemed many to be silent. This must change!
Silent Screams Men – Silent Screams Men will touch on topics pertaining specifically to the rapes of males in our society, the effect on them physically, emotionally, mentally and sexually. Though the rape of males has similar effects as the rape of females, such as anger, grief, guilt, low self-esteem, there are some distinct symptoms men in our society have as male survivors of rape, such as gender identity and manhood. This section of Silent Screams will hopefully address issues pertinent to male survivors and give them a source of relief and resources towards understanding themselves and healing.