Rape is any sexual act that is performed by one person to another without their consent. It includes oral, genital, or anal penetration by an object or a part of a persons body. Traditionally, rape referred to forceful carnal knowledge of a female by a male assailant. This has not been entirely true since males have been and can as well be victims of rape. Fellow males or females can assault males. In the male case, rape will include the anal and oral penetration by a man or woman, as well as sex under duress with a female(s).
This act of sexual violence to males goes unreported in most cases due to fear of intimidation, low self-esteem and possible breach of confidentiality. Males also suffer both physically, psychologically after the gruesome ordeal. Rape can happen as a result of force either by a bigger assailant or attack by two or more people, threat of use of force either on the victim or also on another person, or the victim’s inability to give appropriate consent like in a drunken state after a night of binge drinking.
Some Statistics of Male Rape in The UK
So how big is this problem? According to The Guardian.com, between 2009/2010 and 2011/2012 in England and Wales, an estimate of 9000 males were victims of rape. The survey data further shows that in the year 2011, three out of a hundred males aged between 16 and 59 years had been a victim of rape or attempted rape.
Source (opens in new tab) – https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/jan/11/male-female-rape-statistics-graphic
Also, in 2011, approximately 12000 men are raped every year in England and Wales. Most perpetrators are usually acquaintances of the victim, romantic partners of the victim and even family in some cases. Most of the victims do not report the incident to the authorities hence the exact incidence and prevalence remain unknown. The males who are at the most risk are the very young, the elderly and the mentally/physically impaired.
Source (opens in new tab) – https://rapecrisis.org.uk/statistics.php
Facts about The Variants of Male Rape
Marital rape: forced coitus or related sexual acts within a marital relationship of without the consent of a partner, or in a same-sex (male) marriage.
Acquaintance rape: Sexual assaults committed by someone known to the victim.
Incest: By family member, including step-relatives and parental figures living in the home.
Date rape: Occurs in the context of a dating relationship of the same sex or different sex.
Statutory rape: Sexual intercourse with a male under an age specified by state law.
Child sexual abuse: Contact or interaction between a child and an adult when the male child is being used for the sexual stimulation of that adult or another person.
It is important to note that sometimes the motivations for rape are not for sexual satisfaction but rather a degradation, terrorisation, humiliation, demonstration of power (power rape), anger (anger rape), or sadism.
Facts About The Phases of The Aftermath of Male Rape
After that unfortunate ordeal, the aftermath is divided into two main phases, i.e. the acute phase and the delayed phase.
- The Acute Phase
The acute phase may last for hours or days. Characterized by a distortion or paralysis of the individual’s coping mechanisms, its initial outward responses vary from complete loss of emotional control (crying, uncontrolled anger) to an unnatural calm and detachment.
Later behaviour represents the victim’s need to re-establish control over himself and his environment. This includes abandoning the defence mechanism of denial, allowing the renewed invasion of privacy represented by allowing questioning and examination.
- The Delayed Phase
Secondly, there is a delayed phase which can occur months or years after the assault characterised by chronic anxiety, feelings of vulnerability, loss of control, and self-blame. Long-term reactions include mainly anxiety, nightmares, and flashbacks. In addition to these, it is common to also find sexual dysfunction and psychological distress, mistrust of others, phobias, depression, hostility difficulties in establishing sexual relationships, and suicidal ideations in many victims who do not seek help.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder catches up with many of the victims and is characterised by Intrusive reexperiencing of the trauma, avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma and intense psychological distress.
Physical injuries also happen to many of the victims including trauma to the anal canal, musculoskeletal injuries and other parts of the body. Many require an appointment with a doctor to treat the body injuries and the bleeding which can happen as a result. The major worries are contracting Sexually Transmitted Diseases such as HIV/AIDS, urinary tract infections, and seeking to escape from reality by abusing alcohol and other drugs.
Management of Male Rape
Management of male rape involves the victim coming out to seek help by going to a health facility. At the hospital, the victim will be attended to and his wounds treated. The health practitioner will also be in a position to help them link up with a counselling and community support service. The victim should pursue the matter further by visiting police departments to report the incident. With a lot of support, a victim can heal and move on from the ordeal.
Male rape is an inhuman act that can happen to any male. It is an act usually to assert authority and dehumanize another. Acquaintances are usually the propagators. The aftermath of rape has acute and far-reaching adverse effects. For a victim to fully heal from that ordeal, they require health services, counselling and community support. Like other forms of sexual violence, it should be loathed and the incidences reported to law enforcement authorities.