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It’s Time To Wake Up!

Posted: December 2nd, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

We are in the middle of a social awakening.  Brave individuals are coming forward and acknowledging the sexual dangers women face on a daily basis.  With the growing number of voices, society cannot minimize or pretend that this is not a pervasive issue.  A male friend recently said to me, “I don’t know how any woman can ever let down her guard.”  He is right.  There is no career, economic status, ethnicity, or religion that is immune.  There is no place where women can be assured safety.

Consider these striking statistics

  • 33% of girls under the age of 18 endure sexual abuse
  • One in four women will experience an attempted or completed sexual assault in their lifetime
  • 700 people are sexually assaulted every day in the United States
  • Three fourths of these assaults are perpetrated by someone they know
  • 31% of female workers reported being harassed at work.  100% of those women said the harasser was a man
  • 60% of assaults go unreported, which means that the numbers above greatly underrepresent what women endure

The numbers are staggering.  It continues to astound me that many men possess outrageous entitlement to see women as objectified sex toys that are there for personal gratification.  There is no consideration about the other person who is being denied consent.  Each woman has the right to determine what kind of sexual experience she allows and who earns the privilege to engage in the various levels of intimacy. When this is ignored, it is not without consequence to the other person.  There is confusion, humiliation, a sense of being used, disconnection from the body, and an understandable fear of further harm, to name just a few impacts.  There have been breathtaking tolerance and victim blaming that have served to silence women so they have to bare this alone.  (Current form: calling this a witch hunt).  Women have the right to be treated with decency and respect. As a society and as individuals, it is time to believe that these stories are real and all too common.  It’s time to believe that these offensive actions can have lasting, devastating implications and need to be faced head on.  Finally, we need to give compassion and support to those who have endured sexual mistreatment, doing all we can to preserve/restore self-worth and dignity.

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Sources:

https://nwlc.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Sexual-Harassment-Fact-Sheet.pdf

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/massage-envy-sexual-assault_us_5a1ba7e5e4b0649480754640

https://thebluebench.org/learn/statistics.html

https://prevention.ucsf.edu/uploads/pubs/FS/pdf/CSAFS.pdf

https://brandongaille.com/23-statistics-on-sexual-harassment-the-workplace/

***Great interview on NPR’s Weekend Edition about the legality of these issues. (12/2/17)  (Please cut and paste the following into your search bar)  https://www.npr.org/2017/12/02/567974881/the-legal-recourse-for-victims-of-sexual-harassment

 



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Tania Henderson
M.A., L.P.C., N.C.C.