What is Sexual Assault?
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). The mission of SAAM is to increase public understanding of sexual assault and educate communities on how to prevent it. As per the U.S. Department Office of Women’s Health, Sexual assault is any type of sexual activity or contact that you do not consent to. Sexual assault can happen through physical force or threats of force or if the attacker gave the victim drugs or alcohol as part of the assault. Sexual assault includes rape and sexual coercion. In the United States, one in three women has experienced some type of sexual violence. If you have been a victim of sexual assault, it is not your fault, regardless of the circumstances. Sexual violence can happen within your relationships. Sexual abuse can be expressed in toxic relationships by feeling pressured or giving into demands for sex in avoidance of verbal, emotional, or physical abuse.
NSVRC reports: One in five women and 24.8% of men in the United States experienced completed or violence attempted rape during their lifetime. These statistics are underestimated as most cases of sexual assault are under reported. According to RAINN, our Criminal Justice system notes: only 230 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults are reported to police. That means about 3 out of 4 go unreported. As per Mental Health America, there can be short and long-term effects for these victims such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, anxiety and substance use disorders. These acts are further complicated when there is a resulting pregnancy affecting the victim not only physically, but emotionally, mentally, financially and spiritually.
Many of these women seek to have an abortion, whether that be the abortion pill (chemical abortion) or surgical abortion, finding later they now have compounded Trauma to deal with. Here at Soundview, we have a team of specialized, trauma informed, licensed professionals who will non-judgmentally support you in your personal story. You are not alone. If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence, that has resulted in a pregnancy, and you are considering abortion, we are here to walk alongside you to compassionately explore your pregnancy options.