Your Sexual Assault Matters
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Your Sexual Assault Matters

It doesn't have to be rape for it to be sexual assault

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Your Sexual Assault Matters
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Sexual assault is any type of non-consensual sexual activity. Whether that be fondling, child molestation, sodomy, or sexual intercourse – anything that is not agreed upon by all parties involved would be considered sexual assault.

So why do we only talk about rape? I understand that rape is – by far – the worst thing that can happen to a person, at least in my opinion. And I’m not trying to take that away from anybody. I am just trying to give a voice to those who might feel silenced.

Why would people feel silenced? Simple. They did not experience the worst of what could have happened. They only experienced a “taste” of sexual assault. They are also silenced because so often, when we talk about sexual assault, we only reference rape. Therefore, those who were, in fact, sexually assaulted – just not raped – may feel as though they a) weren’t sexually assaulted or b) feel as though their assault doesn’t matter.

So, I am here to tell you that even if you didn’t get raped, but you were in a situation that was non-consensual, you were sexually assaulted and it matters.

I know there are movies out there that revolve around survivors of rape. I know that there are blogs and magazines and Facebook pages, and a plethora of other resources that are devoted to survivors of rape. I know it is difficult to see where to fit into the term “sexual assault” when it seems to be devoted to just survivors of rape. But, I need you to understand, that though there seems to be more resources for those that have been raped, there are also resources for you. Talking to friends, counselors, going to meetings are all good options.

If you were sexually assaulted, regardless of being raped or not, you experienced a moment in your life that was probably scary. You didn’t know what to do. You didn’t know how to get away or how to stop a bad situation from getting worse. Or you did and you just froze. I don’t know. There are many, many ways a sexual assault could go. But, one thing is for sure, your consent was not given – and that is enough to do harm to a person’s mental and emotional wellbeing. You were affected. No one can take that away from you.

So, you may feel as though since you weren’t raped, your sexual assault is menial. It is nothing to talk about, to draw attention to, or to acknowledge. You’re wrong. Your sexual assault means just as much as the next – because your word and your body was disrespected by another human being. Justice, whether that be through the law or just through acknowledgement, is important. I beg of you that if you have been sexually assaulted and feel as though you have been silenced because it wasn’t the most drastic of events, that you seek help. That you seek a listener, a shoulder to cry on. Someone that you can talk to at 3:00 in the morning because you had a nightmare. Someone you could call in the middle of the day because you saw your attacker. Someone you could run to, crying, because you were reminded of the time that you were violated. Please hear me when I say, your sexual assault matters.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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