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Suggestion For Thread On The "sexual Assault: Different Types" Forum


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hi there. the "Sexual Assault: Different Types" forum i find very helpful for finding people who have had similar experiences to mine.

i have a suggestion for another thread for that forum, a thread for sexual abuse with no physical contact.

my sexual abuse did involve physical contact, but i know that even when it doesn't it can still be damaging. i have a friend whose father perpetrated non-contact sexual abuse on her, and she has been effected similarly to those who have experienced sexual abuse with contact. i.e. she used to struggle with bulimia, she has issues with sex and relationships, etc.

ever since she began puberty (so like preteen age) her dad would do things like stare at her breasts and at her ass (without trying to hide it), comment on her appearance in a sexual way, and if she was walking up the stairs he would (in a very obvious way) go to the stairs and strain to look up her skirt (or if she was in a towel getting out of the shower try to look up her towel). and other messed up stuff like that, too. uggh. she's 27 now and he still does this crap. and her mom does nothing, she is in total denial! even tho it's obvious to her. it makes me mad just to write about it, and it didn't even happen to me.

i know there is already a thread for sexual harassment, but when i hear that term i usually think of incidents that are perpetrated by coworkers or random people on the street or at a club. i know that technically it can also be from anybody, including family members, but still, it's not what comes to mind when i hear the term "sexual harassment" so i think many people who have had experiences like my friend might not think to post there. and, judging from the types of posts that have been placed on that thread, i think others are interpreting it the same way.

also, i think that for a parent to sexually harass their child is a form of sexual abuse, and to have it called harassment might feel minimizing to many people who have been through this.

ok, that's just my two cents! thanks for running this awesome website. : )

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And a good 2 cents worth.

I think it is a great idea.

Thank you for sharing.

Found

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thank you, found! :)

i also have another friend who was sexually abused but with no physical contact. we have lost touch and haven't spoken in about a year so i had forgotten about her story when i first posted this suggestion.

her father would sometimes walk around the house naked. he would watch pornography in the living room when the kids were around. and there was one incident in particular when she was 12 which has given her ptsd. he was in his room lying on the bed with the door open. she was walking by and he called her name. he said: come here, i have something for you. she looked in and saw that he had an erection. she just turned and walked away but she was shaking with fear. she knew that he wanted to rape her. she had already been afraid of him but after that she lived in fear of rape. he never touched her sexually, but these experiences were enough to damage her. in fact of all my friends she is perhaps the most damaged. she is in her 30s now and her life has been in shambles for years.

so from these two friends i know that non-contact sexual abuse can be very damaging. and although my sexual abuse involved physical contact, he (my brother) also did verbal sexual abuse (sexual comments about my body, etc.) and i hated this.

the main reason i think this thread is important to have is because non-contact sexual abuse is often MINIMIZED, not taken seriously by others. and having your abuse minimized can add another layer of trauma. i'm particularly sensitive to this because i minimized my own abuse for years, in response to other people minimizing it, and that was one of the most painful things, because i didn't think i deserved any compassion. it led me to act in self-destructive ways. when i stopped minimizing my abuse, that was a giant leap in my healing. a thread specifically for people who experienced non-contact sexual abuse can help them realize that they should not minimize their abuse, and thus help them heal.

Edited by annieonymous
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this is an amazing idea. This covers so many fields even verbal sexual abuse!!! I would benefit greatly. I had a lot of sexual abuse from the men the drank at the bars I worked in. They made "some"physical contact but mostly verbal and hand genstures so would greatly appreicate this. :flowers::flowers: Hope to see it up :)

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I think this would be useful too. I feel like the "less bad" types are actually really important to have, because people here really struggle with feeling validated to talk about less extreme experiences. I love the SA without physical violence thread for that reason. Its explicitly a way to feel like it still counts.

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In some ways the worst abuse experiences I've had, were this sort of stuff.

Even the people who've actually had contact with me, I feel like the stalking before or snarky comments after were a big part of the whole deal...

I think it would be more recognizable if it were labeled "sexual harassment" or something. There's already a "stalking" thread which encompasses a lot of non-contact sexual abuse, but it's a pretty slow thread, I dunno why.

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I think it would be more recognizable if it were labeled "sexual harassment" or something.

there's already a "sexual harassment" thread. but after reading through it, people only seem to be posting about sexual harassment that was done by peers (coworkers, random dudes on the street or at a club). but i think that my two friends who i mentioned, who experienced non-contact sexual abuse from their fathers, would not think of themselves as part of that thread. i think that what is sexual harassment for an adult counts as sexual abuse when the victim is a child. i also think that, at any age, if the perpetrator of sexual harassment is a family member, this is sexual abuse. i'm an adult and the thought of a family member making sexual comments to me or leering at me in a sexual way is waaaaay more disturbing than some random person doing this.

and i also agree with what setrain said:

I feel like the "less bad" types are actually really important to have, because people here really struggle with feeling validated to talk about less extreme experiences.
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Fair enough. I experienced this type of abuse from my mother and I still feel weird calling it CSA, so I use "sexual harassment" sometimes for it, but I agree it is a sort of weird use of the word.

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