Despite the fact that most news coverage of sexual assault focuses on women and girls, sexual assault can happen to anyone regardless of age, race, gender, ethnicity or more.
It is important to understand how to protect, support and defend all sexual assault survivors regardless of their gender.
Providing emotional support
RAINN discusses the particular impact of sexual assault on men. Many men experience similar feelings of shame and guilt that women also experience. They may experience fear and a reluctance to report the incident to the proper authorities.
When it comes to supporting a survivor of sexual assault, providing appropriate resources and validating the feelings of the victim are among the most highly suggested steps to take.
Regarding emotional support, it is important to tackle this from the best possible angle. Everyone copes with trauma in different ways, and it is important to take that into consideration. However, try not to downplay the incident and its impact on the victim. Do not exert aggressive optimism, either, as it may have the opposite effect.
Getting the right resources
Likewise, the resources to help a person cope through this troubling period will differ from person to person. Resources are not one-size-fits-all. For example, trans men and black men often face unique struggles when facing sexual assault that other men may not understand or experience, even as sexual assault survivors.
Despite the unique stigma and challenges that these survivors face, it is possible to help them through this difficult time with appropriate resources and support.