Essay Sample about Sexual Assault Survivors in College Campuses

Published: 2022-02-16 10:55:50
Essay Sample about Sexual Assault Survivors in College Campuses
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories: College Sexual assault
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1524 words
13 min read
143 views

Sexual assault is an act whereby a person uses physical force to touch another person without their consent to engage in sexual activity. Types of sexual assault include rape, unwanted sexual touching, forcible sodomy, coerced sexual contact, and forcible object penetration. People who have gone through sexual assault and survived it are called survivors. Nearly one in three girls worldwide experience a type of sexual assault in their lifetime. In college campuses, for example, many girls have come forward to report occurrences of sexual assault. Crall and Goodfriend (2016) asserted that women between the ages of 16 and 24 are the most in danger of sexual assault. It has been discovered that 18-21% of women in school detailed being sexually assaulted and 7% announced being the casualty of attempted or successful assault in one academic quarter (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Survivors of sexual assault experience trauma throughout their lifetime that has detrimental effects on their well-being and health. Various countries have legislation on sexual assault. For instance, the Survivor's Bill of Rights Act of 2016 is a landmark civil rights and victim's rights legislation in the United States, which stipulates that rights afforded to sexual assault survivors in government criminal cases, approves the Attorney General to manage grants to guarantee that survivors get certain notifications, and coordinates the Attorney General, in counsel with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to set up a joint working workforce to create, facilitate, and spread prescribed procedures in regards to the consideration and treatment of rape survivors and the conservation of legal evidence (U.S Department of Justice, 2018). This paper discusses the trauma experienced by sexual assault survivors in college campuses by looking into the dynamics of the biopsychosocial impact and the social forces that contribute to their experiences. Also, some of the myths and misconceptions of sexual assault survivors and a case illustration of a person who has experienced the trauma will be discussed.

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Biopsychosocial Impact and Social Forces that Contribute to the Experience of Sexual Assault on College Campuses

Biopsychosocial Impact

Survivors have reported post-traumatic stress disorder. Rosenthial (2017) indicated that the connection between sexual assault during school and posttraumatic stress indications is settled and instinctive, given that rape comprises a reasonable trauma. Also, another psychological impact is depression, which various women have experienced after sexual assault. Glover, Williams, and Kisler (2012) mentioned that stressful encounters achieve a complex and counterbalancing set of hormonal reactions in the immune system. According to him, the capacity to effectively adjust to the challenge of sexual assault, both promptly and in the long-run, is vital to mental and physical well-being and maybe even to what extent one can hope to live.

Social Forces

National Institute of Justice (2018) mentioned that at the point when a woman reports turning into a victim of sexual assault officially to law enforcement or a community service provider or casually, to family, friends, or different intimates, the response itself, if negative, can make further damage the person in question. That harming "social reaction" impact has been perceived for quite a while. Research reveals different degrees of negativity in sexual assault victims. new research uncovers critical variety in the level of cynicism of various kinds of sexual assault disclosures. Maybe irrationally for some, survivors announced getting progressively negative responses from informal supports (e.g., peers, family members) than they encountered when uncovering rape to police or network-based organizations, as per an exploration group studied by Anne P. DePrince, a University of Denver therapist (National Institute of Justice, 2018). Informal supports additionally, for the most part, gave less substantial help and helpful information to the survivors, the scientists found (National Institute of Justice, 2018).

Myths and Misconceptions Surrounding Sexual Assault on College Campuses

Sexual assault myths and misconceptions are the reason some people find it hard to believe that another person is a survivor of sexual assault on college campuses. Society's perspectives about women, sexuality, and power are grounded in instilled thoughts of abuse, bigotry, sexism, heterosexism, homophobia and different types of power. Crall & Goodfriend (2016) articulated that sexual assault myths and misconceptions reinforce false beliefs about its definition, its victims, and the way to prevent it from occurring by shifting blame to the perpetrator (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Many assault myths pass on the idea that only men commit sexual assault and only females are unfortunate casualties (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Another myth is that rape is the main sort of sexual assault and that culprits who are drunk cannot be considered in charge of their activities (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Another myth is that assault happens when somebody's sex drive is uncontrollable (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Another one is that there must be a weapon present for the occurrence to be viewed as assault and that only bad individuals get assaulted (Crall & Goodfriend, 2016). Sexual Assault Support Services (n.d) mentioned that these myths and misconceptions make an absence of trust in reporting and experiencing a legitimate procedure since survivors feel as if they will not be accepted and will not get equity, or they may even accept that they truly "asked for it." Arguably, the public's acceptance of sexual assault myths and misconceptions has negative effects on the survivor's physical and psychological functioning.

Case Illustration

Jane, not her real name, is an African-American 22-year old campus student who attends the University of Toronto. She indicated that during freshman year, one of her close friends, whom she did not want to mention, sexually assaulted her. According to her, it happened during one of the nights she went to sleep over at his hostel. Jane reported the case to campus officials who later investigated the matter and decided to expel the perpetrator from the school since that was not his first case of sexual assault against a student on the campus. Jane's social support was the campus counseling center, where she received sessions three times a week. Her strength is that the incident did not define her and prevent her from achieving her main objective, which was to get a degree. Right now, what Jane needs is social support.

From the fieldwork, Jane had a difficult time holding a conversation because she was still traumatized by the situation. It was difficult establishing boundaries during the encounter with Jane. Concerns of client safety pushed me to change boundaries. Considering I am male, and her perpetrator was of the same gender, Jane had a hard time talking with me. I allowed her to sit near the door where she felt comfortable and informed that if she feels uncomfortable we could stop the session. During the encounter, I applied empathy to build rapport with Jane. With Jane, I anticipate that she will continue to be uncomfortable around male people for a while before she overcomes the trauma.

Conclusion

Sexual assault is a pervasive problem that affects people in different campuses. Undeniably, campus sexual assault has received unprecedented attention over the past few years. Federal guidance and mandates have been enforced to prevent campus sexual assaults. The scope of sexual exploitation encounters among college students, just as the fluctuation in predominance discoveries, has generous ramifications for survivor services, including the arrangement of fitting treatment and legitimate administrations. Treatment reactions, just as grounds reactions to survivors, will fluctuate contingent upon the kinds of sexual exploitation experienced by students. Campus counteractive action and intercession systems should concentrate on the extraordinary elements and necessities of specific grounds and colleges, including assorted student body populaces. The commonness of various kinds of sexual exploitation such as coercive assault, weakened assault, and medication encouraged assault may contrast from grounds to grounds, and consequently, counteractive action, mediation, and survivor services endeavors should begin with a detailed comprehension of the particular needs of a campus populace. Estimating sexual exploitation since entering school is important to precisely assess the degree of grounds rape and recognize these encounters from lifetime, youth, and juvenile sexual victimization. The scope of exploitation encounters that may fall under undesirable sexual contact just as coercive assault, weakened assault, and medication or alcohol-encouraged assault ought to be obviously characterized and estimated independently. Institutionalized definitions can upgrade our comprehension of how commonness rates shift and illuminate the advancement regarding proper counteractive action and intercession systems for different kinds of sexual exploitation. Overall, future investigations should quantify sexual exploitation among explicit populaces of college students who might be a risk for rape, for example, LGBTQ students, students with previous experiences of sexual exploitation, and students with disabilities.

References

Crall, P., & Goodfriend, Wind (2016) She asked for it: statistics and predictors of rape myth acceptance, Modern Psychological Studies: Vol. 22 : No. 1 , Article 4. Available at: https://scholar.utc.edu/mps/vol22/iss1/4

Glover, D.A., Williams, J.K., & Kisler, K.A. (2012). Psychobiological Effects of Sexual Abuse. Semantic Scholar. DOI:10.5772/31606

National Institute of Justice. (2018). Study Finds Agencies Can React More Supportively Than Family and Friends to Victims' Disclosures of Sexual Assault. NIJ.gov: https://nij.gov/topics/crime/rape-sexual-violance/pages/agencies-react-supportively-to-disclosures.aspx

Rosenthal, M. N. (2018). Close Quarters: College Women's Experiences of Campus Sexual Violence. Retrieved from https://dynamic.uoregon.edu/jjf/theses/rosenthal17.pdf

Sexual Assault Support Services. (n.d). Retrieved from https://carleton.ca/sexual-violence support/what-is-sexual-assault/challenging-myths-and-misconceptions/

U.S. Department of Justice. (2018). Survivors' Bill of Rights Act Working Group. Retrieved from https://www.justice.gov/ovw/page/file/1100476/download

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