“I was raped by our house manager when I was 20. It was my first sexual experience. That shit messed me up on top of the childhood trauma I already had. It’s taken me 10yrs to talk about it. Couldn’t even write it in my journals.
What were we taught?
Boys, we were never taught to speak about our pain”
Whenever we hear/Talk about sexual violence the image that is formed in our brains in most of us is that of a male perpetrator and a female victim. It is not our fault though.
Society has taught us that men cannot be sexually assaulted. But, truth be told, there is a significant number of men who suffer in silence after being assaulted for fear of being stigmatized and ostracized in the community.
What Hinders Men from talking about it?
The above case is that of a man (J.E) -not his real name- a tweet chat confession that went viral some few weeks ago which gives us a clear overview of how men get assaulted and fail to seek for help. From his story he failed to speak up for YEARS because it is outside the norm for a man to confess of such.
This is just a single case in a million of men out there who secretly and silently console their souls for years after being sexually assaulted. The main hindrance to speaking up is the cultural dictates i.e. “men must man up”, “only weak men cry”, or the famous “Real men do not cry” thing.
What Does the Law say?
It is also quite evident that the law is somewhat lenient when it comes to male/female perpetrators in male sexual assaults as compared to when it comes to female victims.
This should STOP. It requires combined efforts right from the law makers down to the community members. A safe space must be in existence to ensure that these victims get justice whether male or female.
Truly, it is possible for anyone can be in any form of sexually assaulted. It is equally worse in men as it is in women.But sexual harassment is not solely a women’s problem.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the main federal agency responsible for receiving and investigating workplace sexual harassment charges, did a survey and found that just less than one-fifth—16.5 percent—of the sexual harassment charges received by the agency were filed by men, with the remaining 83.5 percent of the charges filed by women.
Time has come for men to come out strong and lawfully defend their rights. Just like women, men have a right to report any form of violation.
Keeping silent only worsens the situation.
Done by Faith Mwikali- A broadcast Journalist