|Susan Jane Smith B.Sc|
Currently on English television there is an advertisement where a young man watches himself start to rape a young woman – he is outside looking in on the situation. He is shouting at himself to stop because he has seen it from a different perspective. This is excellent in my opinion and I am so glad to see it on such a popular medium. Sadly, rape can occur at any age - it is a crime of violence. You can be any age, sex, or social class as either rapist or victim.
Back in the 1980’s, in the USA, I was a Director at a rape and domestic crisis shelter. I went on to train to become a therapist/counsellor so I have had the privilege of working with some victims and perpetrators. As you might imagine I have some thoughts on the subject based on that experience.
Rape is a crime of power and domination not dissimilar to that of terrorists’ who use fear to inhibit free nations. Rape is not about sex. Sex is just the weapon used. The fundamental desire is control – by controlling another person the rapist subconsciously or consciously hopes to feel adequate and in control of themselves.
In my opinion, we whitewash the nature of this behaviour when it is called sexual assault instead of rape. Yes, this covers the many variations on the situation, but I also think it is our minds wanting to avoid the horror experienced by the victim.
Well, you may be saying, what a topic for a blog by book authors! This is one of the many topics covered in my book Emotional Health for Emotional Wealth – available internationally via Kindle as an e-book, ordered via bookstores or my website www.EmotionalHealthForEmotionalWealth.co.uk. It will also be part of my e-books: Little Book Series on Emotional Health (coming out summer 2012) so that if someone only wants to see what I have to say about this particular subject they do not have to buy the larger book which covers the wider range of topics that is required by survivors.
If you had a wife, girlfriend, sister or mother raped you would be interested. And, yes, old women are raped because this is not about sexual desire so they are just as vulnerable. It is also important to remember that men get raped too and not just in prisons. Still, the public tends to ignore that because it is just too hard for men to talk about, I suspect.
Here is a brief extract from my book, and, by the way, in over 20 years I have worked with men who have been victims and perpetrators – not just female victims:-
“The men who have committed rape have not usually recognised it as rape. They have been talking about their distress (in counselling) and when I have labelled the incident thus they have been surprised. It had not occurred to them. They have talked about the incidents in terms of their needs and how there was only one way to get them met.” This includes marital rape.
In my experience more rapes go unreported than reported. If you know of anyone struggling with the aftermath of this horror do refer them to the many support groups that now exist, or take a look at my book for yourself so that you can pass along increased understanding in a gentle and caring fashion.
Emotional Health for Emotional Wealth
available internationally via Kindle as an e-book, ordered via bookstores or my website www.EmotionalHealthForEmotionalWealth.co.uk.