Offering support for victims in Sanders & Mineral Counties in Montana.
Reality: Anyone is a potential rape victim: 1 out of 3 women and 2 out of 7 men. Doesn't matter what age (although women 17 to 18 years old are at the highest risk), race, class, religion, occupation, education or physical description.
Reality: Rape most often occurs in one's home. Very often (60% to 80%) the offender is a relative, friend, neighbor or other acquaintance of the victim.
Reality: Rape is a violent assault that is acted out, in part, sexually. It is a crime of power, control and dominance.
Reality: Most rapists appear to be perfectly normal. Rapists can also be any class, race, education, and profession.
Reality: Rape is a violent crime - 87% of rapists carry a weapon or threaten the victim with violence or death. Often the actual rape is only a small part of the verbal and physical abuse that can occur during an assault.
In the past ten years, reports of men being raped have been on the rise. As more male survivors come forward and speak of their experiences, and more articles are published in newspapers and journals, public recognition of male rape has begun to increase and more crisis centers have begun to offer services for male survivors.
There is the mistaken belief that men and women have different needs after being assaulted. Although it is true that outreach programs specifically tailored to men are needed to reach male survivors, there is a common human response to rape. Shame, guilt, self-hatred, fear, problems with physical intimacy, and anger are common responses of both male and female survivors. All survivors need to know that they are not alone with their pain, that healing is possible, and that whatever the circumstances the rape was not their fault. Survivors need someone to care enough to listen without judging them.
Myth: Men can defend themselves.
Reality: Men are often attacked by gangs, assaulted with weapons, and taken by surprise. Drugs and alcohol are sometimes used to incapacitate victims. Physical strength is not always sufficient protection when faced with what is experienced as a life-threatening situation.
Myth: Male rape is homosexual rape.
Reality: Rape is about power and control, not about sex. Male rape says nothing of the sexual orientation of either the survivor or the perpetrator. Perpetrators of male rape usually identify themselves as heterosexual in their consensual sexual activities.
Myth: Male rape only happens in prison.
Reality: Most male survivors were raped as children or as adults who were not in jail.
About 3% of American men - a total of 2.78 million men - have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. (Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences of Violence Against Women 1998) In 2002, one in every eight rape victims were male. (NCVS 2002)