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SEXUAL ASSAULT AWARENESS

WHAT IS SEXUAL ABUSE? 


Sexual abuse is any sexual activity (verbal, visual or physical) engaged in without consent, which may be emotionally or physically harmful and which exploits a person in order to meet another person's sexual or emotional needs. 

                                                                           Shelter from the Storm©


SURVIVORS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE ARE: 

  • 3 times more likely to suffer from depression
  • 6 times more likely to suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol
  • 26 times more likely to abuse drugs
  • 4 times more likely to contemplate suicide                               
   **Statistics by www.rainn.org 

STATISTICS

  • 1 in 3 girls will be sexually abused by the age of 18
  • 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused by the age of 18
  • 90% of reported cases the victim knew their attackers

                                                                          ** Statistics: 2000, National Center for Victims of Crime


View more statistics at: Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN)


Statistics indicate the majority of sex offenders are male. However, women can and do sexually abuse children either:

1) directly by initiating or participating in the offense

2) indirectly by failing to intervene upon knowledge sexual abuse is occurring 

ABUSER PROFILES

Contrary to popular belief sex offenders are not “dirty old men hiding in bushes."


While stranger rape is a reality, sexual abuse is frequently committed by someone the victim knows & trust. (i.e., a parent, family member, step-parent, neighbor, brother, cousin, babysitter, friend, teacher, coach, clergy, etc.)


A person who commits sexual abuse can be male or female. Sexual abuse does not discriminate it crosses all:

  • educational status
  • socioeconomic levels
  • religion
  • race
  • gender
  • age

There are no physical characteristics that will identify an individual as a sex offender. Sex offenders come from all walks of life and look like ordinary people. Sex offenders can come from within the family system. 



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SEXUAL ABUSE: A SILENT EPIDEMIC

Sexual abuse is not an easy subject to talk about but we cannot remain quiet any longer and just turn a deaf ear to this silent and horrendous CRIME! Sadly, the heartbreaking reality is that the most vulnerable in society are being preyed upon and many lives have been and are being destroyed at an alarming rate.


Sexual abuse creates illegitimate guilt and shame in a person that will prevent them from seeking the help they need and deserve in order to heal from the traumatic event(s).  There are many consequences due to sexual abuse but the most common are:

  • misplaced guilt and shame (responsibility belongs to the abuser not the person who was victimized)
  • anger
  • confusion
  • low self-esteem
  • fear and anxiety
  • depression
  • controlling behaviors
  • loneliness
  • numb (suppression of feelings)
  • distrust of people


WHAT TO DO IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW HAS BEEN SEXUALLY ASSAULTED 

  • Go to a safe place away from the offender
  • Preserve all evidence of the assault
  • Don't bathe, wash your hands, brush your teeth, smoke, eat or drink
  • Preserve the crime area: do not clean up or straighten anything from your surroundings
  • Call 911

Seek medical assistance for post sexual assault assistance at the following locations in Dallas County: .