The Consequences of Sexual Assault
The survivor is subjected to traumatizing circumstances after a sexual assault incident. The consequences include social, mental, and psychological elements. After being involved in such a situation, the fear of losing the safe life that one is used to may lead to pretense. However, the influence of the experience lasts all the way into the victim's adulthood. Socially, the person feels unwelcome; mentally, he or she thinks that he or she is worthless. The past sexual incident has a significant psychological impact on the individual's judgment and reaction to issues. If proper counseling is not sought during the early stages, the event remains a nightmare that haunts for the peace of the individual for the rest of his/her life. Also, in cases where counseling has been carried out, some victims experience psychological unrest even up to over 20 years later. In this regard, the focal point of this analysis will be geared towards unraveling whether or not, those individuals who undergo sexual harassment during their tender ages end up suffering no permanent damages. Apparently, the evidence provided in this document show that most sexual abuse victims suffer lifelong injuries.
Factors Resulting in Permanent Damage to the Victim
Depending on the circumstances that the patient is attacked, the condition is likely to go away or become part of him/her. Several aspects have been found to be evident as far as the individual is concerned. The gender of the victim plays a significant role in their well-being. For girls, it is tough for them to adjust back to the healthy life. Most of the victims get to fear the gender of the person who committed the crime upon them. In the process of trying to act normal to avoid stigma, they lock the thoughts that may arise within. As a result, the victim gets difficult time dealing with the self-contempt and regrets.
However, for the boy child, the incident is not taken with the seriousness it requires. From several cultures of the world, it indicates that males cannot fall victim of sexual assault. In most cases of male sexual harassment, due to the fear of coming forward to seek help, the victim finds a way to cope with the situation. One of the most common approaches is through substance abuse and self-harm (Karakurt and Silver 79). The condition of male mistreatment can be easily treated. However, the victims are never willing to seek the required medication, making the state to remain a nightmare throughout the victim's life.
The shortcoming does not only fall on the side of the gender of the victim, but also the sexual orientation. Whenever an incident of sexual assault stumbles upon a homosexual, gay or a lesbian, the person fears to report the matter. The societal view towards their sexual affiliation is not favorable. Therefore, the individual decides on alternative ways of solving the situation by inflicting pain upon themselves and/or drug abuse. Once in such a state, recovering becomes almost impossible.
Furthermore, about 30% of the sexual harassment to the weaker homosexual and gay individuals in Washington takes place for those in jail and police custody (Goodtherapy.org). Therefore, due to the fear of not being believed or stigmatized, the victim decides to live with the condition that later destroys him/her over the years. Moreover, should the individual come forward and tell their story, the chances that the patient will be objectified is high. As a result, a life of pain and regrets follow the victim. The feeling of unworthiness takes control of the individuals; hence, it becomes difficult for them to take control of their lives once again.
In cases where the perpetrator is a family member, it becomes hard for the child to live with the situation. The shame involved in the incident may be too vast for the child to share out. Having the individual around the house becomes a constant reminder of the incident. As the child starts showing signs of unrest after a long period, sometimes two years, that is when the incident is realized by the child protection service (Raymond). At that stage, the little that can be done is to regulate a nonending effect on the child, since she/he already underwent much damage.
The effects on the individual are usually more than the physical body. Chemically, the situation is much worse. Substances that are altered within the brain profile lead to inappropriate sexual and cognitive development. In the end, the child grows with a higher sexual urge at a younger stage but with lower educational abilities. Additionally, the victim develops mental problems, a clear indication that such incidences lead to complexions development within the child. Unfortunately, very little medical help has been synthesized. Therefore, facing permanent damages becomes the only way.
Case Studies of Previous Sexual Harassment Incidents and How They Were Handled
From an example given by a man whose father, 34 years, married a four-year-old child, the son has failed to get over the harassment he encountered under his father. Sharing with the wife about the incident of his childhood, the spouse asks him to get over the past. However, the man fears that he feels affection towards his son. In such a situation, the chemical composition of the individual has been dramatically affected. Notably, his sexual development assumes sexual engagements young kids as a way of life (Davis 127). Through attending therapy, the man is helped to ease the anger he has for his father and also have a clear and respectable boundary between him and his son.
Another incident of a lesbian, 22-year-old, who was raped by three male students, is discovered after several weeks. She is taken to the therapist and counseling is done. The victim confessed that she had not told any member of her family about the incident. Also, she admits that she had been undergoing post-traumatic stress, making her skip classes and meals. Besides, she does not care about her outlook. After getting help, she finally tells her parents and also her ex-girlfriend whom she had broken up with. From the occasion, the victim gets help rather early, few weeks, and she is in a position to normalize her life.
Research done by Ashokl shows that the rate of obesity and depression grows higher as time elapses. As some therapist confessed, the victims, more so the ladies, experience lack of sleep due to the events that took place in their childhood. In a study performed in DC with 80 ladies who were victims of sexual abuse, it was clear that the long-term effects of the individuals do not matter to be overlooked. However, not all the victims suffer the same conditions. There are some who have their usual life, meaning that having been sexually abused does not mean the end of the victim's life. Should the attention be sought early enough, the person is entitled to lead a healthy life. Through counseling, the person can get help to move on with the events of that day, forming part of the non-traumatizing past.
The focus of this paper was to establish whether the victims of sexual harassment undergo permanent damages or not. From the events that have been discussed above, a large percentage of victims experience lasting impairments- some in the mental orientation, others psychological and physical course. However, under all situations, the baseline is due to lack of guidance. The effects prove to be much pronounced if the victims are not taken through the necessary therapy. Also, it is evident that even though an individual has suffered shame, regrets, and self-harm for quite some time, the effects caused can be reduced and the person is still entitled to gaining full recovery. Only after then, is when it will be appropriate to claim that victims of sexual harassment suffer no lifelong damage.
Ashokl, Jain, Mohan Nair and Robert Friedman. "Drug-Facilitated Sexual Assaults." SpringerLink (2016): 67-77.
Davis, Thomas J. "Evaluation of the Mechanism of Action of Anti-fertility Treatment in Cases of Sexual Assault: Moral Certitude and Human Acts." Springer (2017): 127, 223-254.
Goodtherapy.org. Sexual Assault/Abuse. 2016. 11 December 2017
Karakurt, Gunnur and Kristin E. Silver. "Therapy for Childhood Sexual Abuse Survivors Using Attachment and Family Systems Theory Orientations." The American Journal of Family Therapy (2013): 42(1), 79-91.
Raymond, Joan. Effects of sexual assault last for decades, study finds. 2011. 11 December 2017