Article Index

Sexual violence against girls and women

All forms of sexual assault are not necessarily about violent forms of sexuality but rather about violence where sex is used as an instrument.That`s why we talk of sexual violence.

Only very few acts of sexual violence are committed by complete strangers. More often than not the perpetrators are acquaintances, friends, (ex-) husbands, partners or (step-) fathers, grandfathers, brothers or uncles.

Women and girls are in no way at all to blame for sexual assaults. There is no behaviour that warrants women or girls being sexually abused. Only the perpetrator is responsible for their actions.

Sexual violence evokes different and sometimes contradictory emotions: As well as feeling fear, anger, disgust and disappointment about the breach of trust if the perpetrator was someone known to the victim, sexually assaulted women and girls often harbour feelings of guilt and shame.

Anxiety and panic attacks, insomnia, self-harm, the inability to relate to others, isolation, feelings of guilt, addictions or dissociative disorders are often the consequences of violence. These can all have a profound and long-lasting impact on the victims.

On the next page you can find some vital information which should be considered in the event of rape.