Myths vs. Truths

Myth: Rape is sex.
Fact: Rape is experienced by the victims as an act of violence. It is a life-threatening experience. While sexual attraction may be influential, power, control and anger are the primary motives. Most rapists have access to a sexual partner. Gratification comes from gaining power and control and discharging anger. This gratification is only temporary, so the rapist seeks another victim.

Myth: Rape is a crime of passion.
Fact: Rape is an act of VIOLENCE, not passion. it is an attempt to hurt and humiliate, using sex as the weapon.

Myth: Women incite men to rape.
Fact: Research has found that the vast majority of rapes are planned. Rape is the responsibility of the rapist alone. Women, children and men of every age, physical type and demeanor are raped. Opportunity is the most important factor determining when a given rapist will rape.

Myth: Women “ask for it” by their dress or actions.
Fact:Rapists look for victims they perceive as vulnerable, not women who dress in a particular way. Assuming that women provoke attacks by where they are or the way they dress is victim-blaming. No person, whatever their behaviour, “deserves” to be raped.

Myth: Only “bad” women get raped.
Fact: No other crime victim is looked upon with the degree of suspicion and doubt as a victim of rape. Although there are numerous reasons why society has cast blame on the victims of rape, a major reason found in studies is that of a feeling of self protection. If one believes that the victim was responsible because she put herself in an unsafe position, such as being out late at night, drinking alcohol, dressing in a certain way, or “leading on” the rapist, then we are able to feel safer because “we wouldn’t do those things.” But, the basic fact remains that without consent, no means no, no matter what the situation or circumstances.

Myth: Women fantasize about being raped.
Fact: No woman fantasizes about being raped. Fantasies about aggressive sex may be controlled and turned off if they become threatening. In rape, the victim is unable to control the violence and stop it.

Myth: You can tell a rapist by the way he looks.
Fact: Rapists are not physically identifiable. They may appear friendly, normal, and non-threatening. Many are young, married and have children. There is no common profile of a rapist. Rapes are committed by people from all economic levels, all races, all occupations. A rapist can be your doctor, your boss, your clergyman, your superintendent, your partner, your lover, your friend or your date.
Rapist types and traits however can be categorized.

Myth: Rapists are abnormal perverts; only sick or insane men are rapists.
Fact: In a study of 1300 convicted offenders, few were diagnosed as mentally or emotionally ill. Most were well-adjusted but had a greater tendency to express their anger through violence and rage.

Myth: Rape is just unwanted sex and isn’t really a violent crime.
Fact: Rape is a lot more than an unwanted sex act, it is a violent crime. Many rapists carry a weapon and threaten the victim with violence or death.

Rape is an impulsive, uncontrollable act of sexual gratification. Most rape are spontaneous acts of passion where the assailant cannot control him/herself.
Fact: Rape is a premeditated act of violence, not a spontaneous act of passion. 71% of rapes are planned in advance. 60% of convicted rapists were married or had regular sexual partners at the time of the assault. Men can control their sexual impulses. The vast majority of rapists are motivated by power, anger, and control, not sexual gratification.

Myth: Rape only occurs outside and at night.
Fact: Rape can and does occur anytime and anyplace. Many rapes occur during the day and in the victims’ homes.

Myth: A person who has really been assaulted will be hysterical.
Fact: Survivors exhibit a spectrum of emotional responses to assault: calm, hysteria, laughter, anger, apathy, shock. Each survivor copes with the trauma of the assault in a different way.

Myth: Rape only happens to young attractive women.
Fact:Rape can and does strike anyone at anytime. Age, social class, ethnic group and has no bearing on the person a rapist chooses to attack. Research data clearly proves that a way a woman dresses and / or acts does not influence the rapists choice of victims. His decision to rape is based on how easily he perceives his target can be intimidated. Rapists are looking for available and vulnerable targets.

Myth: As long as children remember to stay away from strangers, they are in no danger of being assaulted.
Fact: Sadly, children are usually assaulted by acquaintances; a family member or other caretaking adult. Children are usually coerced into sexual activity by their assailant, and are manipulated into silence by the assailant’s threats and/or promises, as well as their own feelings of guilt.

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7 Comments

  1. Christine said,

    December 5, 2006 at 3:09 am

    it’s sad 2 know that there is so much more to fear in this world before anyone can avail of justice…it’s alarming for victims to be judged by the public and worse to be humiliated because no one wants to believe…with the success of nicole in her attempt to fight for what she believed she deserved i do commend her-..while i chose to hide my pains from being raped by my uncle,i do believe that as humans we have to stop others from violating our rights whatever the cost may be.As for my case I chose not to let my family know about this…I was too young then to feel the pains…i think im okay now…BUT NEVER WILL I BE SILENT AGAIN IF THE PEOPLE I LOVED WILL BE ON THE VERGE OF LOSING THEIR INALIENABLE RIGHTS…

  2. Karen said,

    December 29, 2006 at 12:46 pm

    I were sexualy assulted by a friend of the families son . He is a Dominee or Reverend . His mother and Father knew that he raped and sexually assulted 6 other women ,the one being his brothers fiancee and sister the other being married women He planned the sexual assult. His parents knew he was doing these things but protected him at all cost ,offering the other victims money .He sexually assulted me ,it took me years to get over it . His mother wanted to have contact with me all the time ,not giving a damn about my feelings. I were overseas at the time and I phoned her and told her please leave me alone give me space please. She backed off but later people told me that she and her husband were slandering my name ,telling terrible stories about me and some of the other women . He got married ,3 or 4 years after that and has a child now . I just wonder if he will ever stop ? I still battle to forget .

  3. September 8, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    […] Re: 3-year-old raped by uncle, officials say Here’s a good one, as it addresses the "non-premeditated" defense, too: Myth: Rape is sex. Fact: Rape is experienced by the victims as an act of violence. It is a life-threatening experience. While sexual attraction may be influential, power, control and anger are the primary motives. Most rapists have access to a sexual partner. Gratification comes from gaining power and control and discharging anger. This gratification is only temporary, so the rapist seeks another victim. Myth: Rape is a crime of passion. Fact: Rape is an act of VIOLENCE, not passion. it is an attempt to hurt and humiliate, using sex as the weapon. link […]

  4. irma said,

    April 4, 2008 at 6:50 am

    rape happens to anybody, any age. i was 41 years old, a week before celebrating my 42nd bday (jan 24) when my brother-in-law did this horrible thing! fortunately i was able to run and ask help from our neighbors that he wasnt able to follow me out of the house. he was caught a few hours after as he hid in one of our rooms. unfortunately, my sister, his wife did not believe me and in fact stayed with her in-laws at present. by the way, this rapist had been fed by our family all the years they were married with my sister. i realized that no matter how good you are to somebody, if that person has the “instinct” of a rapist, he will do it, no matter who that person may be. right now he’s in prison but i am still afraid that anytime he might escape and come back to kill me as this was what he told me when he assaulted me in our comfort room. hopefully, i can recover and get on with my normal life with the help of my family. to those victims of rape, please dont fear to tell someone about it so that the person doing such act will pay for the beastly act he did. most of all, PRAY.

  5. February 9, 2010 at 9:05 pm

    Mine was one year ago. i am 54 years old!!! i was not drinking, that is how tricky these predators are. they are usually very good looking and very social. you can never tell who they are.

  6. Mel Pahoa said,

    March 7, 2011 at 6:51 pm

    Myth: Rape only occurs outside and at night.
    Fact: Rape can and does occur anytime and anyplace. Many rapes occur during the day and in the victims’ homes.

    I’ve been trying to get people to understand this one! I’ve been called “stupid” for walking outside. When I insist on going out early I get treated like I’m being ungrateful for people’s “concern”.

    The problem is ignorance and women’s hostility towards me as a result of their feeling vulnerable when a female (but I don’t identify as female though)
    doesn’t follow the “safety” rules.

  7. Cat said,

    April 21, 2016 at 3:34 am

    where did ya’ll get the stat about the 1300 convicted men?? can someone send me the source please?


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